Bendigo was the place to be last weekend with the second version of the Ready2Race auction taking place at Lord’s Raceway.
GRV’s premier greyhound sale has been highly marketed since Kiss Me Ketut won the $20,000 Ready2Race final and followed it up by making the Melbourne Cup final two weeks later.
However those in the know will remember that many of the talented dogs to come out of the inaugural sale last November were indeed buybacks – meaning the vendor purchased their own dog, preventing the greyhound from changing hands. It was always going to be interesting to see if that trend would continue for the second version of the sale, particularly with many of the same vendors taking part.
Before any of that could eventuate though, the 117 chasers had to show the eager crowd exactly what they could do under race conditions.
For the 2013 series, there was a wide variety of litters to choose from, with progeny from all over the state available. Lonesome Cry led the way with four individual litters nominated, while Where’s Pedro, Talk’s Cheap and El Grand Senor had three different litters.
Spiral Siyan was the standout name amongst the dams, having produced the star litter of last years’ sale, which included Kiss Me Ketut. Her single entrant in the sale would be by Sandown track record holder, Bekim Bale, and amusingly named Ketut’s Kaput.
26 heats were conducted on the 18th November over the 425-metre trip, with greyhounds grouped by age, ranging between 16 and 26 months. Entered in fields of four, the same chasers would then back up the following Saturday (25th November) to give another display of racing before the hammer would go down at the conclusion of the last race.
While several greyhounds stood out amongst the dreary weather, it was Max Moon, by El Grand Senor out of Bub’s Angel, who would set the time standard on both days of racing. Clocking 24.08 in the heat, Max Moon would return to winning in 24.13 in driving rain.
His final included another eye-catching runner in Detcord (Dyna Lachlan x Queen of Bling), who won in 24.16 before tasting defeat in 24.48 behind Max Moon.
Sisco Good showed plenty of dash in its two runs, with the High Earner dog showing 24.19 on the clock before improving down to 24.15 in its nine-length final success.
Another El Grand Senor pup, Senor Finn, was put up by Diane Bartolo and looked impressive on both weekends, setting times of 24.11 and 24.19, defeating Detcord’s littermate, Turbine, who ran 24.24 on both occasions.
With the racing complete, it was time for business and for thousands of dollars to exchange hands. There was a huge variance amongst the lots, with many buy-backs occurring once again.
Somewhat disappointingly, 40 of the 117 lots would stay in the hands of the vendor, including Ketut’s Kaput, which Dave Burnett chose to retain. But new homes were found for many of those with impressive showings, with the bidding going deep into five figures.
The highest price overall was for Turbine, with the March 2012 Dyna Lachlan x Queen of Bling pup going to David Toar for the incredible price of $28,000.
Mr Toar also shelled out another $15,000 for ‘Doc’, a very young July 2012 Lonesome Cry x Sweet About Me pup which went 24.44, 24.70 in the two public runs.
Best-of-day runner, Max Moon was arguably the highest profile purchase, heading to the Anthony Azzopardi kennel for $16,000. Interestingly though, it made $1,300 less than the dog it beat in the final, Detcord, who stopped the bidding at $17,300.
Senor Finn was purchased by Des Dooley on behalf of the SEN radio show ‘Off The Bench’ for $14,600, while Sisco Good was retained by John Galea for $10,000.
Robert Britton was also active at the sale, snapping up Dr. Portia (Aston Jobson x Dr. Joy) for $5800. Dr. Portia ran 24.51 in winning her heat before coming fourth out of four in 24.79.
GRV has often aimed the Ready2Race sale at people looking to buy their first racing dog, and there were plenty of smaller-price sales for those hoping for a bargain.
Scanz Choice may turn out to be a value-pick after showing plenty of box speed on both occasions, yet only changing hands for $1,800. While $2000 would have bought you the Royal Assassin bitch, Keep It Safe, who despite not turning two until march, was able to win her final by three lengths in 24.70.
All dogs sold in the auction can now earn points in selected events, with the top eight qualifying for the rich Group 3 final, to be held in November 2014.