WA trainer Enzo Crudeli says he isn't likely to head back to South Australia to contest next month's Group 1 Adelaide Cup (515m) after scoring the quinella in Thursday night's Group 3 SA Derby at Angle Park.
Crudeli's pair took advantage of good box draws, with Black Bombshell (Barcia Bale x Tearsabout Tears Aug '15) stepping brilliantly off box three, leading all the way and holding off a late challenge from kennel mate Bundles Galore (Dyna Nalin x Saving Bundles Jul '15) to win by three quarters of a length in 29.79.
Victorian superstar Mepunga Blazer (Barcia Bale x Mepunga Nicky Jun '15) was sent to the traps as the $1.40 favourite off box seven in the the $25,000 to the winner event, but missed the kick before rattling home for third.
“It was like we planned it – the race unfolded just like I was hoping it would,” Crudeli told Australian Racing Greyhound.
“It just proves you have to be out in front in these big races. Even though Mepunga Blazer was pretty close down the back Black Bombshell was going quick out in front and it's always tough to run them down coming from behind.
“In the end there wasn't much between my pair so I was very happy with them.”
Black Bombshell has now won nine of his 16 starts with three placings and more than $60,000 in earnings for Crudeli, who also co-owns the greyhound as the manager of the Ten Eighty Syndicate.
Crudeli says both greyhounds have returned home and have pulled up well, although he says at this stage he won't be heading back to the festival state to contest the $75,000 to the winner Adelaide Cup, with the heats set to be held on October 5.
“They've both pulled up well which is encouraging because it was their first time away from home and they had to travel three weeks in a row,” Crudeli said.
“They seemed to handle the travelling, but at this stage I think they'll just stay here for some of the feature races and miss the Adelaide Cup.
“They are both young and I don't want to push them too hard.”
Crudeli, who won this year's Group 1 Perth Cup, said it was a massive thrill to win the Derby – his first major race success outside of his home state.
“You can't beat winning the Perth Cup, but to put the hard work into travelling with a dog and then winning a group race interstate is very special – it is a good feeling.”
Although he isn't heading back to South Australia in the near future, Crudeli says he won't rule out travelling east with some members of his talented kennel – with major features such as the Melbourne Cup fast approaching.
“You always aim to have one going good enough for those types of races, but it will come down to how they are going at the time. But it will definitely be in the back of my mind.
“[Black Bombshell and Bundles Galore] are both going great at the moment and funnily enough I think they both have some improvement in them – hopefully they can just keep getting better with more racing.
“To have to travel three weeks in a row and do what they did was very exciting.”