The performance of Jeff Britton’s chasers headlined the heats of the Group One Adelaide Cup on Thursday night at Angle Park.
Britton won four of the heats so he has half the field for next week’s big one. Victorian chasers dominate the final field, filling six of the eight available spots, with Texas Titan the fastest qualifier through to the final just ahead of Blurred Lines.
The first heat of the Group One Adelaide Cup resulted in a massive upset when 40/1 chance Winbrook (2) prevailed over Iva Vision (8) and Musquin Bale (3) in 29.94.
The Where’s Pedro and Little Looper (Primo Uno – Koyuga Proof) dog had won just one of his last five races prior to the heats and in his last two starts had finished last. That was back in May this year and this run was his first back from a spell.
The Cameron Butcher trained conveyance began well from box two and just kept bobbing when he crossed the line in front. The favourite Iva Vision was unable to get across and had to do a lot of work to get into a handy position on the rail. Musquin Bale was well away but elected to take the longest way around by sticking three off the rail. The finish was close, Iva Vision missed out by just a head and Musquin Bale was another half a length behind.
Lovely Banks based trainer Kelly Bravo made the long trip to Angle Park worthwhile by taking out the second heat with Blurred Lines (4). The Bartrim Bale and Witch Fantasy (Premier Fantasy – Witch Magic) dog went to the boxes at 9/1 with race favourite Allen Deed (1) looking almost a certainty from box one.
When the lids opened, Blurred Lines was best away and he wasn’t headed for the remainder of the race. Allen Deed and Wind Whistler (2) dwelt and were at the back at the field heading into the first turn. While all honours go to the winner, Allen Deed’s finish was something to behold. He absolutely stormed home to go down by just a neck in 29.75. Superfonic (8) rounded out the placings.
A favourite went down again in the third heat after Campaspe Will (1) absolutely murdered the start at his first look at Angle Park and subsequently blew all his chances of winning. National Time (5) emerged as the lamplighter from box five, followed by Kalden Gambino (2) and Texas Titan (3).
Texas Titan was in a very handy position and as the race progressed the Vapour Whirl and Foot Luce (Hallucinate – Scarlett) dog chipped away at National Time’s lead and then went past him halfway up the home straight to win by two lengths in 29.74 for Jeff Britton. National Time held on for second in front of Kalden Gambino.
Star greyhound Oakvale Destiny (5) embodies the definition of tenacious. The 29kg blue bitch was only moderately away in the fourth heat and jammed between a wall of runners but she still managed to push through, get herself into a clear third and then work away at the leaders to win by three and a half lengths in 29.78. Her finish was very similar to her brother’s in the previous heat. She defeated Dustnado (7) and Clash Of Kings (6) to give Jeff Britton another runner in next week’s final.
The trend of defeated favourites continued in the fifth heat as 18/1 chance Valladares (8) streaked away for a convincing seven and a half length win in 29.87.
In a messy affair, Aston Kane (1) copped another bout of bad interference, this time at the first turn where he had his back legs taken out from underneath him. Valladares was able to cross the field before all the trouble started with the rest of the field ending up off the fence rounding the turn.
It was Valladares eighth win from 16 starts and the El Grand Senor and Sealin’ The Deal (Talk’s Cheap – Trusta Rush) dogs win gives local trainer Lauren Harris a runner in a Group One final.
Jeff Britton’s night got even better after the sixth heat as his charge Mepungah Armagh (7) proved too good in 29.83. All eyes were on Ernie Bung Arrow (8) but he was bitterly disappointing as he ‘bungled’ the start and dashed any chance of defending his title from last year.
Mepunga Armagh, a strikingly marked black and white dog by Premier Fantasy and Mepunga Harmony (Pure Octane – Mepunga Shiraz) was never going to be beaten once he led the field around the first turn and he waltzed away comfortably by over five lengths. Classy local chance Sidney’s Shadow filled second and Eye Smith (2) wound up in third.
If three runners in a Group final isn’t enough, Jeff Britton decided to go one better and will now rug up half the field after Cosmic Wise’s win in the final heat.
It was a battle early as Footluce Diva (1), Cosmic Wise (7) and Emerley Senorita (8) raced tightly for the lead into the first turn. Emerley Senorita came out on top but her lead was short lived as Cosmic Wise nailed herself to the rail down the back and took the lead turning out of the back straight.
The final field for next week’s race is:
Box 1 – Oakvale Destiny (29.78) – Jeff Britton
Box 2 – Allen Deed (29.77) – Allen Deed
Box 3 – Winbrook (29.94) – Cameron Butcher
Box 4 – Mepunga Armagh (29.83) – Jeff Britton
Box 5 – Cosmic Wise (29.84) – Jeff Britton
Box 6 – Valladares (29.87) – Lauren Harris
Box 7 – Blurred Lines (29.75) – Kelly Bravo
Box 8 – Texas Titan (29.74) – Jeff Britton