Grafton dog racing lives up to all the hype
WHAT a final the GBOTA Easter Maiden proved to be on Saturday afternoon at the Grafton Greyhounds.
With $2,000 first prize money plus a free service to the boom young sire Elite State, donated by Jim Osborne and Sam Cauchi at Rocky Ridge Stud, the field assembled were all quality youngsters and all will certainly win plenty of races.
The favourite was the Denis Reid-owned and Mathew Reid-trained Boiling Jet, however the sentimental favourite was the Dave Robertson owned-and-trained Hazavar Jet and this time the sentimental favourite prevailed when Hazavar Jet jumped in front at box rise and held on gallantly to win by a head in the very good time of 23.03.
Considering that Heaps Fast was an Eater Egg aspirant two weeks ago and won the preceding race in 23.02 Hazavar Jet certainly should win more than his share of races.
With all the problems that the Robertson family are having the scenes at the presentation were very emotional, even more so when Dave's wife Maureen was recognised for all the work that she has done for the club in the canteen over a good number of years.
It was also a great Easter for Naughtons Gap trainer Jan Finneran who won the three top grade races on the card including the Rocky Ridge Farm Derby and Oaks both these races had services to Rocky Ridge Stud Dogs Black Enforcer for the Derby and Cyrus The Virus for the Oaks courtesy of Sam Cauchi.
The run of Jan's dog Blue Punisher in the Derby was one of the best seen at Grafton for a long time.
This was a field of top grade dogs including the favourite Don Paco, the speedy Quiz Kid, Hot Syrup and Absolute Fury and yet Blue Punisher was able to come out second last and work his way through the field to be fifth at the home turn and then finish powerfully to win by a neck in 23.13.
The win was the fourth on the trot for Blue Punisher and although his time wasn't as quick as last week 22.88, this week's effort was a beauty.
In the Rocky Ridge Oaks Jan's bitch Heaps Fast had to work hard to burn off the speedy Sheena's Lucky on the circle and then come away to win by five and a half lengths in the best time of the day 23.02.
Jan's other winner was Kihael Krakka in the Sam Cauchi top grade over the 480 metre trip.
Kihael Krakka began well from box seven to lead through the catching pen and held on to win by a neck in 27.74 the best of the day over that distance.
Dryaaba trainer Denise Robinson also notched up a winning double she won the Diet Coke maiden with Spring Hawk who led all the way to score by a length and a quarter in 23.31 and then in the Brian Kutner [jnr] fourth and fifth grade over 480 metres Spring Royal led from the 407 metre boxes to win by a length and a half in 27.80.
Mighty Malcom broke a frustrating run of placing's for his trainer Maureen Boylett when he led all the way in the Zero Coke maiden to score by three quarters of a length in 23.53.
Trainer Gary Cluss was all smiles when Petrans Whattime led all the way in the Brian Kutner (Jnr) fifth grade over 407 metres, Petrans Whattime won by a half length in 23.32 to make it two wins on the trot at Grafton.
Local trainer Cynthia Robertson returned to the winners circle when Tranquil Royal won the Jim Osborn fourth and fifth grade by three quarters of a length in 23.40.
The final event on a very successful Easter programme went to the Bob Cooke trained False Alarm in the Jim Osborn fifth grade over the 480 metre trip, False Alarm led all the way to score by two and three quarter lengths in 27.85.