Jeff Britton’s temporary posting as the King of Angle Park continued on Thursday night when he dominated the two semi-finals of the 2014 Group Three Brian Johnstone Memorial.
Britton landed the quinella in the first semi when his pairing of Oakvale Flyer and Weblec Belle (2) staged a battle royale. Eventually it would be the class of Oakvale Flyer that saw her sneak home by the barest of margins in 29.95.
The pair began the race well with Weblec Belle leading before Oakvale Flyer railed under her out of the straight and took a one length lead. The pair raced like that all the way to the home straight where Weblec Belle made one last ditched effort only to fail by a nose.
Sunday Shoes (4) ran on well to grab third and qualify for next week’s $25,000 to-the -winner final with Gun McBain (5) finishing fourth to also advance.
Britton then showed the first semi was no fluke by backing up to quinella the second as well when Texas Titan (2) scored by 1 1/4 lengths from his litter sister Oakvale Destiny (3) in a rapid 29.66.
Both dogs left the boxes worse than midfield before cutting a swathe through the field to take up the top two positions as the field headed down the back straight. Texas Titan led out in the centre with Oakvale Destiny poised on the rails a length away.
But try as she might, she could not over haul her brother who was impressive and continued his affinity with the Angle Park circuit.
Local trainer Cameron Butcher qualified two runners for the final with Dodger I Am (5) finishing third and Spicy Peppa (7) fourth.
Four of the finalists next week will come from the ultra successful Vapour Whirl – Foot Luce (Hallucinate – Scarlett) litter. Texas Titan, Sunday Shoes, Oakvale Flyer and Oakvale Desitny are all progeny of the mating which has already produced Group winners and multiple Group finalists.
The box draw for the 2014 Group Three Brian Johnstone Memorial is as follows;
1 – Spicy Peppa (Cameron Butcher)
2 – Gun McBain (Vadim Roz)
3 – Oakvale Destiny (Jeff Britton)
4 – Texas Titan (Jeff Britton)
5 – Dodger I Am (Cameron Butcher)
6 – Weblec Belle (Jeff Britton)
7 – Oakvale Flyer (Jeff Britton)
8 – Sunday Shoes (Nathan Wilson)
9 – Gunsmoke McBain (Vadim Roz)
10 – Young Gun McBain (Vadim Roz)