Fernando Bale breaks $1 million mark, set for Topgun penultimate

CHAMPION sprinter Fernando Bale will have an easy fortnight before tackling the Group 1 Topgun
at The Meadows on October 24.

Trained by Andrea Dailly, the white and dark brindle superstar demolished a quality line-up in the Group 1 Adelaide Cup at Angle Park on Friday night, scoring by eight-and-one-quarter lengths in a sensational 29.20.

The victory was his 10th Group title, his seventh at Group 1 level, and took his career earnings over the $1 million mark, making him the first greyhound in the world to earn seven figures.

Co-trainer Tom Dailly was still in awe of the son of Kelsos Fusileer and Chloe Allen when speaking with Australian Racing Greyhound on Monday morning.

“He is a sensational dog to train – he is just a freak,” Dailly said.

“There was a huge crowd on course and when he hit the front everyone started clapping and then turning for home it just erupted – it was a spectacular feeling.”

Dailly said the next goal is the $150,000-to-the-winner Topgun, a race which is likely to be his penultimate.

“He’ll have an easy few weeks – his next start will be the Topgun – we will probably give him a trial at The Meadows in between as there is a 15 day break in between the races, but we haven’t decided definitely yet.

“He is only a young dog and he loves racing – when he knows he is going racing he gets very excited – so hopefully he can put a couple of more wins together before he goes stud.”

Owner Paul Wheeler has announced that Fernando Bale is likely to retire after November’s Melbourne Cup at Sandown Park, with a staggering $420,000 set to go to winning connections.

Dailly said it will be a tough day when Fernando Bale leaves the kennels.

“I think we will have to padlock his kennel door and not let Paul get a hold of him,” he joked.

Dailly said despite the superstar holding a special place in the hearts of his trainers, he is treated like any other dog on the property.

“We get attached to a lot of the dogs in the kennels, but we treat them all equally…of course he is something special, but he still gets treated like the rest of them, we treat them all well.

“He is a very outgoing dog, but he is also very quiet. He can be quite full of himself, but the only time you hear him is when he wants his tea – the rest of the time he is as quiet as a mouse – he is basically just like any other dog.”

The final field for the 2015 Topgun will be announced this Tuesday night, with the draw to be conducted on Saturday night. Dailly says there is no pressure on the draw, with his speedster having won a Group race from every box.

“He is one of the very rare dogs that, when he makes a final, we are never too concerned about where he draws.

“Everybody hangs out to see what box they get to find out what chance they have in the race, but he is probably the only dog we have ever had which we are not concerned about which box he draws because he comes out no matter what, it doesn’t matter where he is.”

Team Dailly are also hopeful that their highly talented chaser Dyna Double One will have done enough to make the invitation-only Topgun field, with a toe injury ruling him out of the Adelaide Cup last week.

Dailly said he is confident that the son of Barcia Bale and Crystin Bale will be firing on all cylinders should he gain a start in the feature.

“It was only a toenail injury – if he gets an invite into the Topgun he should be right for it, so hopefully he does and he can start off there before heading onto the Melbourne Cup.

“He deserves to win a Group 1 race, but he is only a young dog so if he stays sound he should have plenty of time to do so.”

Check out Fernando Bale’s epic Adelaide Cup victory below.

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