THE greyhound racing spotlight will shine on Richmond this Saturday night with the Londonderry track hosting the final of the Group 3 Richmond Oaks over 535 metres.
Open for bitches only, Star Torana (box one) and Rue De Kahn (box six) are currently the $3.65 equal favourites with Bet365 to take out the $30,000-to-the-winner feature.
Dean Swain’s Rue De Kahn, a daughter of Where’s Pedro and Shelbourne Dawn, was the fastest qualifier from last week’s heats, recording her 17th career victory in a speedy 30.61 off box one.
The winner of last year’s Group 1 National Futurity has been a model of consistency throughout her 58 start career and has a great record from the awkward six alley where she will jump from on Saturday, with three wins from four starts.
Star Torana also has a great record from her draw in the final with a perfect two from two wearing the red rug. A winner of seven from 16 overall, she has not managed to score within her within her last six starts, but has also had to contend with a string of poor box draws.
Four other runners are currently under double figure odds with Bet 365, the next best being Miss Sueko (box two) at $4.50 after her 30.88 heat win last Saturday.
Also in contention is Group 1 National Sprint Champion Chica Destacada (box five), which is currently $6.50 to take out the race, with Zipping Abby (box four) and Fancy Top (box eight) both rated an $8.50 shot.
The final will be race six on the card and is scheduled to jump at 8:55pm.
Lets hear what Australian Racing Greyhound‘s Brad Bugeja had to stay about each of the finalists.
Box One: Star Torana
Black Bitch – 28.9kg – June 2013
Collision x Redskin
Trainer: Shaun Evans
T/D Best: 30.76
Career Highlights: FINALIST 2015 Group 3 New Sensation, 2015 Group 3 Ladies Bracelet, WON Wentworth Park 30.13, Bulli 26.40.
“Consistent speedster and, although she is better suited to a wider draw, she should be able to handle herself quite well from the red. Last week she began well and led for a long way before being run down in the closing stages. She is normally a little stronger than that so I’m expecting her to improve a little this week. I’m not convinced she can win the event but she might be able to sneak into the placings.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $3.65 with Bet 365
Box Two: Miss Sueko
Black Bitch – 25.9kg – July 2012
Dyna Lachlan x Miss Lolola
Trainer: Justin King
T/D Best: 30.88
Career Highlights: WON Wentworth Park 29.67, 29.68, 29.85.
“She normally races best when she can lead and dictate the terms, however last week she stormed home from off the speed and she looked impressive when scoring a commanding 30.88 heat win. Tonight’s assignment is a little harder so she can’t afford to make too many mistakes in the early stages. She has the talent to win but I’m willing to risk her in this event.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $4.50 with Bet 365
Box Three: Wuxi
Black bitch – 26.4kg – November 2012
Fabregas x Florinda Belle
Trainer: Luke Azzopardi
T/D Best: 31.00
Career Highlights: WON Gosford 29.69, 29.80, 29.83, Wentworth Park 29.68.
“Far from disgraced when placed in her heat and she did catch the eye when winning at Wentworth Park four runs back in a blistering 29.68. The only concern with her is that she can bomb the start at times and she does need to lead to win this race. Great effort to qualify but she will need a lot to go right for her to win.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $16 with Bet 365
Box Four: Zipping Abby
Fawn Bitch – 26.8kg – July 2012
Spring Gun x Agent Gibbs
Trainer: Ronald Seymour
T/D Best: 31.01
Career Highlights: 3RD 2015 Group 3 The Ambrosoli, FINALIST 2015 Group 3 Ladies Bracelet, WON Bathurst 30.00, Wenworth Park 29.66, 29.74, 30.07.
“Strong 31.01 heat winner last week and if she turns in a similar effort tonight she can score. The track was quite heavy last week so I’m willing to ignore the steady time, if she landed on the lure she could easily get down to the 30.50 mark. The main concern is that there is an abundance of early speed drawn on her outside, so she may get crowded through the first corner. If she can avoid bother she should figure prominently.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $8.50 with Bet 365
Box Five: Chica Destacada
Black Bitch – 26.6kg – May 2012
Cosmic Rumble x Eluthra
Trainer: Doreen Drynan
T/D Best: 30.62
Career Highlights: WON 2014 Group 1 National Sprint Championship, 2014 Group 3 Xmas Gift, 2ND 2014 Group 1 Melbourne Cup, FINALIST 2014 Group 2 WA Oaks, 2014 Group 1 Dapto Megastar, 2014 Group 1 Topgun, 2015 Group 1 Temlee.
“Star chaser and if she gets away well she is a monster chance of winning. Four starts back she sizzling around Wentworth Park in 29.51 and she was far from disgraced when placed behind Rue De Kahn in her heat last week. She is drawn inside Rue De Kahn this time around so if they both step well she should be able to drive through and hold her out. She is a very hard chaser to get past when on the lure and I think she can get the job done.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $6.50 with Bet 365
Box Six: Rue De Kahn
White and Blue Fawn Bitch – 26.4kg – February 2012
Where’s Pedro x Shelbourne Dawn
Trainer: Dean Swain
T/D Best: 30.50
Career Highlights: WON 2014 Group 1 National Futurity, 2ND 2015 Group 2 Gosford Cup, FINALIST 2014 Group 3 Canberra Cup, 2014 Group 2 Bob Payne Sprint Sprint, 2014 Listed Richmond Oaks.
“She has been back to her brilliant best in recent weeks and she must be considered again. She has won four of her past six in explosive style and she has been putting the time on the board. I would prefer her drawn nearer the inside but she has the ability to lead or come from off the speed, she just has to avoid trouble in running. Definitely not my top pick but she must be included in your exotic bets.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $3.65 with Bet 365
Box Seven: Good Odds Regina
Blue Bitch – 28.0kg – May 2013
Don’t Knocka Him x Noir Rose
Trainer: Frank Hurst
T/D Best: 31.24
Career Highlights: WON Dapto 29.76, Wentworth Park 30.02, Bathurst 30.05.
“Solidly placed in her heat and will have derived a lot of benefit from that run as it was her first look at the track. The big concern tonight is that there is an abundance of early speed drawn underneath her so she can’t afford to make any mistakes in the early stages. If she goes around at double figure odds she could be worth an each way ticket at the overs.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $14 with Bet 365
Box Eight: Fancy Top
Red Fawn Bitch – 27.4kg – March 2012
Cosmic Chief x Armatree Ella
Trainer: Anthony Azzopardi
T/D Best: 30.93
Career Highlights: WON 2015 Dubbo Cup, Wentworth Park 29.90, 29.94, Grafton 27.39, Dubbo 29.90.
“In form and is highly talented on her night but I dont like her from a wide draw. She has always raced best when drawn nearer the inside and she needs to be able to find the early lead in the early stages. From the pink she is likely to be posted wide for the entire journey and I can’t see her getting into the race at any point.”
Odds to win the Richmond Derby: $8.50 with Bet 365
1st Reserve: Zipping Midge
Black Bitch – 27.2kg – November 2012
Fabregas x Zipping Jewel
Trainer: Jason Mackay
T/D Best: 30.99
Career Highlights: WON 2015 Group 1 National Futurity, FINALIST 2015 Group 1 Golden Easter Egg.
“Class act when on song and she was having her first look at the track last week, so I’m expecting her to improve on that run. If she happened to gain a start she would be a serious contender in this event.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $10 with Bet 365
2nd Reserve: Winsome Amanda
Black bitch – 29.7kg – April 2013
El Grand Senor x Ramblin’ Ruby
Trainer: Melinda Finn
T/D Best: 30.67
Career Highlights: WON Wentworth park 30.01, Dubbo 30.08.
“Inexperienced chaser but she continues to improve and she was solidly placed in her heat. I don’t think she is quite up to this class yet but she will continue to get better and she should keep working her way through the grades.”
Odds to win the Richmond Oaks: $12 with Bet 365
Top Four: 5 – 6 – 7 – 4
Boxed Quinella: 4,5,6,7 ($6 for 100%)
Trifecta: 5/4,6,7/Field ($18 for 100%)
Trifecta: 5,6,7/4,5,6,7/1,2,4,5,6,7 ($36 for 100%)
Exacta: 5,6,7/4,5,6,7 ($9 for 100%)