LEGENDARY Queensland trainer Tony Brett (pictured) will be chasing his fifth success in the Group 1 Winter Cup (520m) at Albion Park this Thursday when he contests the feature with talented siblings Thirty Talks and Split Image.
However, Brett, who has won the feature with Iso Octane (2011), Glen Gallon (2012 & 2013) and Flash Reality (2014), concedes the 2016 final will be a difficult race to win.
“It has been a great race for us over the years, but this time it is going to be tough,” Brett told Australian Racing Greyhound.
“It is a very open race, it certainly won’t be easy, the box draw has evened it out a lot.
“It is a very intriguing race and I have looked at it 100 times, but I have given up trying to work out what is going to happen.
“All I know is my crew are ready to go so we’ll have to wait and see what happens on the night.”
Brett’s best chance of securing the trophy in 2016 is with his exciting youngster Thirty Talks, a $6.50 shot with William Hill.
A winner of 14 from 18 overall, the brindle dog had to do plenty of work in his heat last Thursday, barging his way from the back of the pack around the first turn to shoot clear and score by one length over the fast finishing Cyndie’s Magic in 29.93.
“It looked like he missed the kick last week but he actually head-butted the boxes…he tried to time the start and he just went that fraction of a second too soon.
“It’s not a bad thing as far as I’m concerned because it means that he is down the front and pushing and ready to go – he just has to get it right.”
Brett says Thirty Talks, the winner of this year’s Group 2 Richmond Riches Series, will have to nail the start to win the final, but says if he can then he is capable of running scorching times on the bunny.
“He needs to come out humming this week from where he is drawn, you can’t give these dogs a start because there are three other greyhounds in the race which can run around 29.60.
“He is certainly capable of coming out well – he showed that two starts ago – and if he does he can show his big motor and he can run the hands off the clock.”
Brett also gives a chance to Split Image in box seven, with the 29.6 kilogram speedster qualifying for the final when finishing second behind Blazin’ Bomber in her heat last week.
“She is very honest and she is so consistent – she gets down and she has been beginning brilliant which really puts her in a race like this.
“It certainly opened my eyes last week just how good a dog Blazin’ Bomber is because she (Split Image) pinged the lids and I knew she would be running time, but he just went past her in the straight like she was a fifth grader.
“Realistically she is a 29.90 dog at Albion Park – I would be very surprised if she ever came out and ran 29.70.
“With that being said if she gets out like she normally does and a few of them find bother behind her then she can definitely pinch the race out in front.”
The favourite for the race is Anthony Azzopardi’s Zambora Brockie ($1.85) following on from his 29.64 heat victory, with fellow Victorian Blazin’ Bomber next best at $4.20.
The Group 1 Winter Cup is race eight on the card at Albion Park this Thursday night and is set to jump at 9:12pm.
Group 1 Winter Cup – market
Box 1 – Cyndie’s Magic – $13
Box 2 – Vegas Bound – $34
Box 3 – Outside Pass – $7
Box 4 – Zambora Brockie – $1.85
Box 5 – Master Jackpot – $16
Box 6 – Thirty Talks – $6.50 with William Hill
Box 7 – Split Image – $16
Box 8 – Blazin’ Bomber – $4.20
1st Res – Abby’s Magic – $51
2nd Res – Cheeky Chance – $51