Kyogle kid out to claim feature final

GREYHOUNDS: A red-hot field will face the starter in the Greyhoundproductsdirect .com feature final at the Grafton Greyhound Racing Club this evening, with the Stratheden-trained Kyogle Clodhoppa certain to start as the punters elect to secure the spoils following his brilliant heat win.

Four heats of the fifth-grade series were conducted last week, and it was the Allan Lang-trained speedster that set the track alight and tongues wagging with his blistering 22.75- second victory from his favourable box 1 draw. While the impressive youngster was sent out a well supported favourite and was expected to win, none could have predicted this near-record run.

The well-bred youngster began with them from the boxes. However, he displayed great acceleration to quickly lead the field, and with every bound from that point on, he sat about spacing his rivals, eventually running out a hollow seven-length victory over the consistent Robell Summer. Kyogle Clodhoppa ran a slick 8.37-second first section, and his connections will be hoping for a repeat performance in the final off box 8.

The wide draw may pose some problems for Kyogle Clodhoppa as he does have a habit of missing the kick slightly before hitting top gear, and he can't afford to do many things wrong in the early stages against such classy opposition.

However, if he can once again clock around the 8.37 mark in the run to the turn, then it will take a herculean effort from one of his rivals to hold him out in the run to that all-important first turn.

His fans can be heartened by the fact that the one and only time he had box 8 was on the tight Casino circuit when tasting victory, and on that occasion he was very patient in crossing from the wide draw running a straight line in the early stages. He appears to be quite an intelligent greyhound, so he should race very well tonight.

The Dave Irwin-trained Curriculum has drawn box 1 in the final, which is typically a great box draw. However, on this occasion it may not be the draw he was looking for, as the greyhound drawn on his immediate outside, All Apache, has a penchant for cutting sharply towards the rails as soon as they jump, so Curriculum may be facing a tough task to avoid interference from the boxes.

All Apache for Ross Stephens is actually the second fastest heat winner, arriving in the last hop to defeat the Jeff Chapman- trained Zlaton in the time of 23.16 seconds. The run of both greyhounds was impressive, and each are not without their chances of causing an upset in the final, while the Glenda Dart-trained Movida will also have plenty of admirers following his 23.19- second win, and he doesn't look to be too badly drawn in box 5.

One of the better bets on the night looks to be the Gary Smith-trained Orara Charlie, which looks well- suited from box 7 in the Iluka Bowls Club stakes over 407 metres.

Orara Charlie recorded back-to-back victories towards the end of February before muffing the start badly at his last outing when finishing well back. Punters can ignore that run and can expect the son of Fear Zafonic and Orara Lass to perform more on a par with his previous run, which was a nice 23.25 second win.

On that night, Orara Charlie showed good speed to the first turn, and with a slow beginner on his outside, he should get all the favours tonight.

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