Wylie Boy’s Unique Sale Cup Double

HE is the only greyhound in the history of the Sale Cup to have won the race twice, since its inception in 1970. Wylie Boy, a black dog by Kareem out of Fantasy’s Halo, took out the 1995 and 1996 editions of the Sale Cup, when the race was conducted over the now defunct sprint distance of 511 metres.

Unfortunately for Wylie Boy, the Sale Cup was not classified in those years as a Group event, only attaining Group 3 status in 1997, before becoming a Group 2 race in 2001.

Wylie Boy began his career with victories up the Healesville straight (340 metres), over 424 metres at Sale, 513 metres at Traralgon and 511 metres at Olympic Park.

The precocious youngster was given his chance in the Sale Cup series, then run over 511 metres. That faith was rewarded when Wylie Boy destroyed his rivals in his heat on 8 July, scoring by just over 16 lengths in a fast 29.40, the best time of the meeting.

In his heat he had drawn box eight, but in the Sale Cup final he exited box one, with only the handy City Blitz expected to give him any cause for concern.

As it happened, Wylie Boy and City Blitz ran the quinella, with Wylie Boy prevailing by just over a length in 29.31, a new race record.

The victory meant Wylie Boy was undefeated in six starts. Unfortunately, next time out, over 520 metres at Cranbourne, he could only dead-heat for third.

He then won his next five on end, including the Traralgon Cup, which he won by seven lengths.

He was selected to compete in the 1995 Topgun, acquitting himself well with a strong third behind Rapid Hiker and Tenthill Doll in track record time for 511 metres at Sandown. It was even more meritorious considering Wylie Boy had fallen in a top-grade race (won by Rapid Hiker) at the track just two weeks earlier.

In 1996, Wylie Boy ran second in the Healesville Cup before returning to Sale for a tilt at his second Cup. He won his heat, from box one, by nine lengths in 29.79, the best time of the meeting, and once more had the luck of the draw in the final, again coming up with the coveted ‘cherry’ for the 20 July final. As with 1995, Wylie Boy made no mistakes, careering away to defeat the smart Zealous Guy by almost six lengths in a best of the meeting 29.66.

That second Sale Cup proved to be the last time he raced at the course. He was unbeaten in five starts at Sale over 511 metres. He also raced three times over the 424-metre trip, for one win, one second and a fourth.

It was also the fifth and final time Wylie Boy would draw box one during his career. As with any good greyhound, he knew how to take advantage of such a wonderful alley, remaining undefeated in those five starts.

He again made the final of the Traralgon Cup, but could only finish third behind Flash Monarch and Sparkling Buck as he attempted to become the first greyhound to win back-to-back Traralgon Cups.

As with 1995, Wylie Boy was again an invitee for the Topgun, and this time, over 515 metres, he prevailed in a close finish, defeating South Australian champion Oak Raider by three-quarters of a length with Zealous Guy just a head away third.

From there he made the final of the Cranbourne Cup, but was injured in finishing last behind Wild Season and did not race again for two months. For his efforts in 1996 he was named Victorian Greyhound of the Year.

In 1997 he raced just eight times for a single win and five placings. It was clear he was not at his best and was retired, having raced 59 times for 34 wins, seven seconds and five thirds, earning $133,465 in prize money.

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