THURSDAY night will see two group 1 events kick off at Sandown Park, with heats of both the Harrison-Dawson and the Sapphire Crown over the 515m trip.
The Harrison-Dawson is restricted to male greyhounds only, with Blazin’ Bomber and Unlawful Entry the joint favourites to take out next week’s final at $5 with Bet365.
Blazin’ Bomber comes into the series having won the Group 3 Bill Collins Memorial Speed Star at his latest start, clocking a sizzling 29.09 over the track and trip at Sandown. The son of Kinloch Brae and Absolute Stunna is beautifully boxed to qualify for the final, having come up with box one in the first of four Harrison-Dawson heats.
Unlawful Entry will contest the fourth and final heat of the night, with the two time group winner set to jump from box two against a classy field including the likes of Aston Bolero (box four) and Zambora Brockie (box five).
The girls will also get their chance to shine on Thursday, with four heats of the Group 1 Sapphire Crown featuring some of the finest females in training.
The $100,000 to the winner series currently has four greyhounds sharing favouritism to take out the title next Thursday, with Folio Bale (heat one box one), Nymeria (heat one box three), Outside Pass (heat three box one) and Shared Equity (heat four box six) all sharing the $6 quote.
For punters placing a bet on the all-in markets, your greyhound will need to finish first or second on Thursday night to keep your bet alive and must win their respective final in order to collect.
Group 1 Sapphire Crown – heat one – 7:07pm
Folio Bale (1) has been racing against some high class company at her most recent starts and although she has been mixing her form a little bit, she must be respected as she is more than capable on her night. She has only won the one race at Sandown Park, but on that occasion she recorded a slick 29.38. Box one suits and she looks a good chance of winning.
Nymeria (3) appears to be the main danger. She has won seven of her 14 starts to date and three starts back clocked a hot 29.35 here. Can be hit and miss at the start, but she is explosive when she does everything right and has very little pace around her in this race.
Moonlit Wings (8) showcased her best last start when leading all the way in 29.55. This is a rise in class and she is probably better suited towards the fence, but based on her last run she is one to throw into the multiples.
Polijuice Potion (6) has a stack of ability but she isn’t a good beginner and she will get a long way back. However, she should be rattling home late and is rough place hope.
Suggested bet: WIN bet on Nymeria at $2.90 with Sportsbet
Group 1 Sapphire Crown – heat two – 7:25pm
Outside Pass (1) was far from disgraced when running second in the Bill Collins Speed Star last start with a time of 29.25. Probably better boxed out wide, but there isn’t much speed in this race so from box one she should be able to push up into a nice spot and make her own luck.
Benta Bale (3) is in hot form at present having won her past three starts including two over the track and trip in 29.35 and 29.47. Not the fastest of beginners but definitely has the ability.
Lyka Allen (5) has been beginning very well of late and only needs to repeat some of her recent sectionals to go close to leading this race. If she can find the front she is capable of running around 29.35 and they would have to be very good to pick her up.
Cash In Motion (6) is a group 1 winner and probably one of the fastest greyhounds in the series. The thing that lets her down a lot of the time is her box manners but she should get every chance to get into the race on the outside of a fast beginner.
Suggested bet: WIN bet on Outside Pass at $2.40 with Bet365
Group 1 Sapphire Crown – heat three – 7:46pm
Alpha Demeter (2) is a good beginner and she is suited by the inside draw. Last week she jumped well off the one and led all the way in 29.52 – a repeat performance would see her go close again here.
Steel The Best (3) mixes her form a bit but is more than capable on her night with a fast 29.47 personal best at Sandown. Will be aiming to follow the two into the event and could run a nice race at handy odds.
Star Torana (1) has a great record around Wentworth Park and heads to Sandown for this series where she has won her only start over the track and trip. Goes well from the inside and should run well.
Fantastic Skye (7) goes well at Sandown Park and must be respected although she does tend to go better from the inside, while Zipping Lilly (5) is a last start group 3 winner which is debuting at Sandown Park in this race.
Suggested bet: WIN Bet on Alpha Demeter at $3.65 with Bet365
Group 1 Sapphire Crown – heat four – 8:10pm
Shared Equity (6) is the class runner of the entire series. Two starts back she ran third in the Group 1 Perth Cup after leading, however she is normally pretty strong and she returns to Sandown here where she has a slick 29.22 personal best. Box six doesn’t help but if she can show her usual good dash she should be near the lead and will be very hard to stop.
It’s All Talk (2) is forming an imposing record with 13 wins from just 15 starts and she appears beautifully boxed in the two. Normally a nice beginner and if she can find the lead she will be running some time out on the lure.
Sausage Sizzle (4) showcased some of her best at Warrnambool recently, clocking a phenomenal 24.93 over the 450m trip in a heat of the Group 2 Warrnambool Classic. Has only won two from 12 here, but she is finally starting to hit her straps and could be a danger.
Fantastic Roxy (5) has been racing very consistently, but has come up with the squeeze box and will need a bit of luck early.
Suggested bet: WIN bet on Shared Equity at $4 with Sportsbet
Group 1 Harrison-Dawson – heat one – 8:28pm
Dalgetty (8) was far from disgraced when clocking the fifth fastest overall time in last Thursday’s Bill Collins Speed Star and he should get every chance to muster pace and claim the lead early here off box eight. The Group 1 Temlee winner is better than his recent form reads and he should be giving the favourite a run for his money.
Blazin’ Bomber (1) is the obvious danger. He was sensational here last week when recording a sizzling 29.09 and he is unbeaten off box one. Only needs to reproduce that run to be taking home the win.
Diego Bale (4) is a freak with a massive engine which nailed the start at The Meadows last start when clocking 29.87. His issue is that he is inconsistent at box rise and he can’t afford to be giving these greyhounds a start.
Cactus Jack (6) has a heap of ability, but he is very inexperienced and is not drawn well. One for the multiples and be sure to watch out for him in feature events over the next few months.
Suggested bet: WIN bet on Dalgetty at $3 with William Hill
Group 1 Harrison-Dawson – heat two – 8:52pm
Ultimate Magic (8) has only had one start here where he recorded a fast 29.35. He has some fast dogs to cross here if he is to win this race, but he generally shows terrific early speed and should be able to clear them early with a safe getaway. Will be hard to run down out in front if he gets clear around the first turn.
Tiggerlong Await (4) ran second in the Group 1 Perth Cup two starts back and followed up that run with a 29.36 win at Sandown Park. Box four is no help but he has the pace to be prominent.
Marley Bale (2) is racing very well but is probably drawn on the wrong side of the track. Nevertheless he is more than capable of featuring if he can get away well.
Moreira (6) is probably the strongest dog in the race, but like all back markers he will need luck.
Weston East (1) has a super record off the cherry and is a must for exotics.
Suggested bet: PLACE bet on Tiggerlong Await at $2.44 with Sportsbet
Group 1 Harrison-Dawson – heat three – 8:52pm
The third heat is probably the hardest to pick a winner.
Dawkins Bale (7) has mixed his form recently but he is suited out wide in this race and he loves Sandown where he has won six races with a 29.24 personal best. Will need to produce his best to win this race, but is a rough chance at odds.
Major Jackpot (3) is suited in box three and he was far from disgraced when competing in the Bill Collins Speed Star last week. He placed seventh overall but posted sizzling first and second sectionals – if he can reproduce those times tonight he will be right in the mix here.
Slick Ice (5) has good early speed and has won his past three start, however he will have to bring his A-game against this lot.
The Jason Thompson-trained pair of Buck Forty (1) and Invictus Rapid (2) are also winning chances, however they will both need luck in a race with a fair bit of speed.
Suggested bet: PLACE bet on Dawkins Bale at $3.80 with Sportsbet
Group 1 Harrison-Dawson – heat four – 9:37pm
Zambora Brockie (5) is racing in career best form and comes into the series as a last start winner of the Group 2 Warrnambool Cup. Box five is not ideal but he is racing high on confidence at present and is a speedy beginner. If he nails the start he should just win.
Unlawful Entry (2) is the track record holder at Sandown and if he actually jumped it would be a thrilling race to see him go stride for stride with the five. He is very risky early and will need luck, but he is drawn well and should be powering into calculations.
Aston Bolero (4) is another one racing in good form. He will need some luck from the alley but he is a speedy dog on the lure.
Snakebite Bale (1) has a big motor, but has been mixing his form lately and he is likely to be giving them a big start early.
Suggested bet: WIN bet on Zambora Brockie at $3 with Bet365