Cindeen Shelby created history as she stamped herself as Australia's premier sprinter with a devastating win in the $72,500 Group 1 Macro Meats Crown Classic at Sandown Park tonight.
Having secured the Paws of Thunder at Wentworth Park in Sydney followed by the Sky Racing Topgun at the Meadows a week later, Cindeen Shelby clinched her third consecutive Group 1 title inside four weeks with an all-the-way in Australia's premier race for female greyhounds.
“I still can't believe it,” said handler Jackie Greenough.
“When she led through the first turn I looked to see where (favourite) Queen Lauryn was and when I saw she was back in the pack I started to get excited.”
Trained by Jackie's husband Kel, the daughter of Triple Crown winner Bombastic Shiraz took full advantage of the cherished box 1 draw, jumping well to hold her position on the rail going through the first turn before opening a two length margin on Bora Bale.
From there she was never threatened. She maintained her margin in the run to the line and claim the $50,000 first prize, holding off the fast finishing Flash Of Light ($4.80), while Bora Bale ($17.40) chased gallantly to finish third.
Queen Lauryn, who ran a scintillating 29.42 in her heat, found early trouble but finished strongly to run fourth.
Kel Greenough was effusive in his praise of his champion speedster.
“She is just a complete professional,” he said.
“I would really like to thank (owner) Ray Parkinson – it's so hard to get hold of a dog like this.
“This is a dream come true for us. To win three Group 1's in a row is just unbelievable.”
Cindeen Shelby joins some of Australia's greatest ever greyhounds on the Macro Meats honour roll. Since becoming the nation's richest race for females, the Group 1 feature has been won by Australian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame inductees Bogie Leigh and Paua To Burn, three-time Group 1 winner Betty's Angel, multiple Group race winner Que Sera Sera, and 2008 winner Queen Lauryn.
Tonight's win was Cindeen Shelby's fifth Group race win and 25th of her 42 race career, and took her career earnings to $368,050. Cindeen Shelby will now set her sights on the $250,000 Solo Melbourne Cup, where success in Australia's premier greyhound race would elevate her to a new Australian prizemoney record.
The heats of the Solo Melbourne Cup will be run on Thursday 19 November with the final to be run on Thursday 26 November.
After the placings the field finished in the following order 4th Queen Lauryn ($2.40fav), 5th Aint Workin ($31.50), 6th Octare ($46.90) 7th Boozeroo ($13.00) and Arvo's Chill ($56.60).
Cindeen Shelby is Red Fawn Bitch whelped August '06 she is by Bombastic Shiraz from Proper Shelby (Royal Assassin x Proper Angel). She is raced by Ray Parkinson and trained by Kelvyn Greenough the Group 1 Top Gun win took her record to 44 starts for 25 wins and nine placings and prizemoney earnings of $368,050.
The Sapphire Classic was first run in 1974 as an age restricted race for dogs and bitches. The event was relaunched in 2002 as the Sapphire Crown Classic bitches only feature. Listed below is the impressive list of past winners.
Sapphire Crown Full Honour Roll
- 1974 Bristol Sue Alec Reid 31.11
- 1975 Dynamic Dean Paul Hogan 30.67
- 1976 Tawny Brad Greg Durham 30.82
- 1977 Overflow Love Pat Haas 31.09
- 1978 Rubin Caine Ted Sallows 30.77
- 1979 Monica's Mist John Hellingman 30.74
- 1980 Worthy Weston Brian Jacobson 30.93
- 1981 Shamrock Flight Kevin McCabe 31.06
- 1982 Wynlee Spirit Alan Roberts 31.17
- 1983 Rocky Pyramid Fred Ladd 30.65
- 1984 Currency Lass Ned Bryant 31.10
- 1985 Rembrant John Hose 31.06
- 1986 Sydney Dingaan Ned Bryant 30.83
- 1987 Rothwell Keith Anderson 30.63
- 1988 Hogan Len Ketelaar 31.02
- 1989 Super Gun Eddie Baumgartner 30.81
- 1989 Dapto Brandi Darren Murray 30.77
- 1990 Ravello Robert Britton 30.82
- 1991 Heza Mullrook Keith Kent 30.42
- 1992 Dashing Eagle Bob Douglas 30.31
- 1993 Magnacarter Bill McNally 30.60
- 1994 Stylish Raider Kevin Byng 30.33
- 1995 Ben's Surprise Len Ketelaar 30.34
- 1996 Sarah's Deano Marion Siakew 30.30
- 1997 Token Prince Michael Abbott 30.31
- 1998 Time Framer Philip Newman 30.12
- 1999 Ashlee Jeannine Peter Giles 29.74
- 2000 Dutchy's Angel Tom Dailly 29.74
- 2001 Let It Be Neil Dicks 29.75
- 2002 Bye For Now Ian Dann 30.00
- 2003 Bogie Leigh Tony Brett 30.07
- 2004 Paua To Burn Steven White 29.85
- 2005 Paua To Burn Steven White 29.82
- 2006 Betty's Angel Paul Bartolo 29.85
- 2007 Que Sera Sera Angela Langton 29.91
- 2008 Queen Lauryn Tony Brett 29.79
- 2009 Cindeen Shelby Kelvyn Greenough 29.72