TALENTED speedster La Grand Logie will carry the hopes of NSW when he contests the Group 2 Healesville Cup (350m) final on Sunday.
Trained on the Central Coast by husband and wife team Jeff and Carole Eaton, La Grand Logie began brilliantly from box five to score in last week’s heat, much to the delight of his trainers.
“We are over the moon to have made the final,” Carole told Australian Racing Greyhound.
“We took three down and the other two didn’t go any good in their heats and so I was starting to think that it was going to be a very long trip home.
“But La Grand Logie is a dog that always gives one hundred and ten per cent, so I knew that even if he didn’t win that he would still do his best.”
Defeating a quality field including the likes of Shared Equity and Hail Storming, La Grand Logie clocked a slick 19.00 at his track debut- a time usually reserved for seasoned top class chasers up the straight.
“A couple of the trainers down there said that it takes a special dog to break run that time at their first go at Healesville, but he generally runs brilliant times up the trial straight, so I was quietly confident that he could do it,” Carole said.
The Eatons are hopeful that their star chaser, currently $13 with Luxbet, will repeat his heat performance in this week’s $47,000-to-the-winner final, with the son of El Grand Señor and Oh Em Gee drawing more favourably in box one for the decider.
He will be up against a superb field including the likes of Shared Bonus (box two), Billo’s Pick (box four), Ronray Spirit (box five), Allkel To Excel (box seven) and Kayda Shae (box eight).
“I think he might be able to go a bit quicker this week. Being on the rail opposed to coming out of box five and having to go left will help him.
“I think being on the first line will help him too as he will have a bit of extra time in the boxes – he should be able to get down and ready before the second line goes in and he will hopefully anticipate the start as well as he did last week.”
Carol indicated that the black powerhouse is nearing his brilliant best, following a nasty fall at Wentworth Park back in June.
“The fact that he got up that night was a huge relief – I didn’t care that he didn’t win, I was just glad that he was ok.
“He went off a little bit after that, I think a fall can do that to them as it affects their confidence, and then he got the kennel cough.
“He just wasn’t the same dog for a while – but now you can see that his mood has gone back to being his normal, happy self, and he is back to his best on the track again too.”
Carol said it would be a massive thrill to land a big race win with La Grand Logie, which has already made a Group 1 final and has been placed in the Group 2 Maitland Cup and the Group 2 Black Top during his career.
“He has been knocking on the door for a while now and I don’t like getting my hopes up, but it would be lovely to win.
“It would mean so much. We have four children – one of our sons is engaged at the moment – and we also foster a little girl – so to be able to give them all a helping hand would be amazing.”
The Group 2 Healesville Cup is race eight on the card this Sunday and will jump at 3:09pm.
Below is the form and career highlights for each runner, with comments and tips from Australian Racing Greyhound‘s expert tipster Brad Bugeja.
Box One – La Grand Logie
Black Dog – 32.4kg – March 2013
El Grand Senor x Oh Em Gee
Prize money: $63,173
Trainer: Jeff Eaton
Career: 38: 13-6-8
T/D: 1: 1-0-0
T/D Best: 19.00
Career Highlights: 2ND 2015 Group 2 Maitland Cup, 3RD 2015 Group 2 Black Top, FINALIST 2015 Group 1 Vic Peters Classic, 2015 NSW Sprint Championship.
“La Grand Logie is a gun NSW speedster and he really impressed when posting a slick 19 flat heat win. Last week he was having his first look at the track, so I would expect him to be able to go a little quicker this time around and from the red draw he looks to be a serious chance.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $13 with Luxbet
Box Two – Shared Bonus
Black Dog – 32.5kg – February 2013
Brett Lee x West On Bluebird
Prize money: $51,525
Trainer: Jeff Britton
Career: 39: 16-5-9
T/D: 3: 1-1-1
T/D Best: 18.90
Career Highlights: FINALIST 2015 Group 2 Horsham Cup.
“Last week he roared out of the traps and he was never in doubt when posting a sizzling 18.90 heat win. On that occasion he had Azza Azza Azza settle just behind him, but he was never able to take any ground off him. Obviously this is a much tougher assignment today, but if he bounces out of the traps like he did last week he will definitely take some catching. He is currently around the $8.50 mark and that appears to be a good price.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $8.50 with Bet365
Box Three – Señor Grumpy
Brindle Dog – 35.3kg – July 2012
El Grand Senor x Jules Asner
Prize money: $19,110
Trainer: Aaron Ware
Career: 23: 9-7-1
T/D: 8: 4-3-0
T/D Best: 18.88
Career Highlights: WON Healesville 18.88, Bendigo 23.76, Warragul 22.72.
“Injury prone chaser who really could have been anything had he remained sound. He has won four of eight over this trip and he has been placed in another three attempts, and last week he was the fastest qualifier when posting a brilliant 18.88. Obviously if he can reproduce that effort he is a serious chance. However, last week he exited the pink draw; today he steps from a middle pin and he has speed drawn all around him, so he is likely to find early bother. Great effort to qualify but I can’t see him figuring in the finish today.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $16 with Bet365
Box Four – Billo’s Pick
Brindle Dog – 33.4kg – June 2012
Where’s Pedro x Macie Bell
Prize money: $42,320
Trainer: Kel Greenough
Career: 28: 18-2-1
T/D: 1: 1-0-0
T/D Best: 18.90
Career Highlights: WON The Meadows 29.87, Sandown Park 29.43, FINALIST 2015 Group 2 Bendigo Cup.
“Enormous talent which has scored three devastating wins on the trot. Three starts back he destroyed a class lineup at Ballarat when posting a ridiculous 24.90 and he displayed a similar amount of speed when posting an impressive 18.90 heat win last week. His first section of 6.52 was solid but I think he is capable of going a tad quicker this time round, and that means he should be able to settle in the top three early. He is currently around the $6 mark and that price is okay, but I am concerned he might get squeezed in the initial stages.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $6 with Sportsbet
Box Five – Ronray Spirit
Black Dog – 34.0kg – December 2012
Cosmic Rumble x Ronray Disco
Prize money: $168,245
Trainer: Terry Reid
Career: 41: 22-4-5
T/D: 2: 1-0-0
T/D Best: 19.18
Career Highlights: WON 2015 Group 2 Warragul Cup, 2015 Group 2 Warrnambool Cup, FINALIST 2015 Group 2 Shepparton Cup, 2015 Group 1 Golden Easter Egg, 2015 Group 2 Bendigo Cup.
“Superstar is aiming for the Country Cup bonus and although he is big odds today, he definitely has a blow out chance. Last week his winning time was only steady but he is clearly better than that. If the five gives him a cart across early, he should be in the mix for most of the journey. He has the early speed to match any runner in this event and at the $21 quote he appears to be well over the odds.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $21 with Sportsbet
Box Six – Pud
Black Bitch – 31.0kg – June 2012
Mogambo x Mum’s Heart
Prize money: $32,870
Career: 36: 10-4-8
T/D: 12: 6-2-3
T/D Best: 19.08
Career Highlights: WON Ballarat 25.37, Cranbourne 30.14, Sandown Park 29.44.
“Has always done her best racing here and she was able to score quite easily in her heat. However, the time of 19.21 was far from impressive and today she meets an impressive lineup. The box draw is a big disadvantage and with the speed draw around her she is likely to find a lot of bother in the initial stages. Great effort to qualify but I can’t see her featuring in the finish.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $34 with Sportsbet
Box Seven – Allkel To Excel
Black Dog – 36.5kg – February 2013
Elite State x Kingsbrae Di
Prize money: $33,405
Trainer: Kel Greenough
Career: 12: 11-1-0
T/D: 3: 3-0-0
T/D Best: 18.94
Career Highlights: WON Warragul 22.58, Ballarat 21.80, Bendigo 23.68.
“Freakish talent who has won 11 of 12 to date and on each occasion he has been able to post impressive sectionals. His past three wins have come from the pink draw, so he clearly has the ability to handle a wide draw and his sectional of 6.44 last week has him settling in the top two early. This is his toughest test to date but he should be up to the challenge. However, at the $2.90 quote, he does appear to be a little under the odds.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $3.60 with Sportsbet
Box Eight – Kayda Shae
Red Fawn Dog – 34.2kg – June 2013
Kilty Lad x Comsic Aphrodite
Prize money: $83,020
Trainer: Kelly Bravo
Career: 18: 10-4-0
T/D: 1: 1-0-0
T/D Best: 19.08
Career Highlights: WON 2015 Group 2 Cyril Rowe Cup, 2ND 2015 Group 3 Cranbourne Puppy Classic, FINALIST 2015 Group 2 Warrnambool Cup.
“Legitimate star in the making. He was able to overcome a few difficulties early in last week’s 19.08 heat win. Clearly the time wasn’t there, but second up today I would expect him to take at least two or three lengths off his winning time which puts him right up there with the leading chances. He is normally better suited to a rails draw but at least from the pink he should get plenty of room to balance up early and with a clear run he should probably prove too strong for his rivals.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $3.50 with Sportsbet
1st Reserve – Danyo’s Slappy
Brinde Dog – 29.3kg – January 2013
Cosmic Rumble x Danyo’s Kelly
Prize money: $47,605
Trainer: Neil Ryan
Career: 40: 17-9-4
T/D: 7: 2-3-1
T/D Best: 19.43
Career Highlights: WON Healesville 19.87, Cranbourne 17.55, Sale 24.60, Sandown Park 29.72.
“Classy country chaser who was just pipped near the line last week. He has a solid record here and if he happened to gain a start he could be a serious chance at odds.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $13 with Bet365
2nd Reserve – Azza Azza Azza
Brindle Dog – 33.2kg – May 2012
Collision x Alotta Mojo
Prize money: $177,385
Trainer: Wayne Vassallo
Career: 48: 30-7-0
T/D: 6: 2-3-0
T/D Best: 19.16
Career Highlights: WON 2015 Group 2 Shepparton Cup, 2015 Listed Easter Gift, FINALIST 2015 Group 2 Warrnambool Cup.
“Super star talent who is the reigning Shepparton Cup champ. He was probably a tad disappointing in his heat, but I would expect him to be able to turn it around this week. Unlikely to start but obviously a great chance if he does.”
Odds to win the Healesville Cup: $7 with Sportsbet
Top Four: 8 – 7 – 1 – 5
Win bet on Kayda Shae and Ronray Spirit (more on Kayda Shae)
Boxed Quinella: 1,5,7,8 ($6 for 100%)
Exacta: 7,8/1,5,7,8 ($6 for 100%)
Trifecta: 8/1,5,7/Field ($18 for 100%)
Trifecta: 1,5,7,8/1,5,7,8/1,2,4,5,7,8 ($48 for 100%)