FANTA Bale created history on Thursday night when becoming the first greyhound to secure the Australian Cup (525m) – Sandown Cup (715m) double with a determined effort in the world’s richest staying race at Sandown Park.
Starting from box six, Fanta Bale was only fairly away, slipping into third position behind Dundee Osprey (box eight) and Teddy Monelli (box two) in the early stages.
Entering the home straight the first time, Fanta Bale got a bump from Midnight Elsa (box four) which subsequently put her back in fourth position.
Racing into the back straight, the black bitch put her mind to the task, circling Teddy Monelli and Midnight Elsa to set off in pursuit of the tearaway leader.
Swinging for home, it was still Dundee Osprey clear by four lengths, but Fanta Bale was closing quickly, pushing up along the fence to capture the lead in the run to the line to score in 41.87.
Trained by Rob Britton, Fanta Bale has now won four group 1 races and is remarkably the first female greyhound to ever win at the highest level over 500m (Australian Cup), 600m (Hume Cup, Rookie Rebel) and 700m (Sandown Cup).
Kennel representative Peter Riley was full of praise for the daughter of David Bale and Ucme Typhoon following the event.
“I haven’t seen a greyhound so versatile,” Riley said.
“She had a really hard run there – she missed the start a little bit, found some trouble, then found trouble again – but she just chased her little heart out and you can’t ask any more.”
Fanta Bale has now won 23 from 37 with nine minor placings, whilst her career earnings are now in excess of $716,000.