Cosmic Bonus to start favourite in 2017 Gosford Cup
COSMIC Bonus (Cosmic Rumble x Dark and Stormy Dec '14) has been installed as the $2.90 favourite with Sportsbet to take out next Tuesday's Group 2 Gosford Cup (515m) after an impressive performance in his heat of the feature earlier this week.
Trained at Whiteman Creek by Evelyn Harris, Cosmic Bonus led all the way from box two in his qualifier, recording a fast 29.83. It was his third straight win since resuming from a two-month spell and his 22nd victory overall at start 45.
Cosmic Bonus has a liking for the Gosford track, having won four of his six starts on the Central Coast circuit including a blistering 29.40 personal best which he recorded on Gosford Cup final night last year.
He will start from box eight in the $40,000 to the winner final, a draw from which he has won three of his eight starts with three minor placings.
A win in the feature would end a frustrating run for Harris and Cosmic Bonus in big race finals, with the white and brindle dog having previously qualified for the Group 1 Winter Cup, the Group 2 Queensland Derby and the Group 3 Casino Cup with no success.
It will be no easy task for Cosmic Bonus which comes up against a sensational field in the final.
The fastest qualifier is the Hank Vanderburg-prepared Miss Splendamiro (Barcia Bale x Splendorous Sep '15) which won her heat in a scintillating 29.61 on Tuesday night.
Boxed to perfection in the red, Miss Splendamiro hopped well off the inside and quickly found the lead, bolting to the line to defeat defending champion Barking Bad (Bella Infrared x Ebby Miss May '14) by one length on the line.
Miss Splendamiro has come up with box five for the final and is the $3.30 second elect with Sportsbet.
Victorian One Required (Cosmic Rumble x Enlightenment Mar '15) benefited from a look at the track the week prior when winning his heat in 29.75.
The Graeme Jose-trained chaser battled for the lead with Poppa Ogg (Fabregas x Little Mother Jun '15) for the majority of the race before slipping into top gear approaching the home turn, racing clear to win by three lengths over the fast finishing Chase The Cash (El Grand Senor x Time And Money Feb '15).
One Required will have to overcome box four to win the final and is rated a $7 shot.
The remaining heat was won by double figure shot Viva Opal (Barcia Bale x Glamorous Opal Mar '15) which bounced back for her first win in seven starts when triumphing in 29.88.
The black bitch is bred to run, being out of a sister to Group 1 Melbourne Cup winner Black Magic Opal (Magic Sprite x Awesome Opal May '11) and she has now won 12 of her 44 starts for Budgewoi owner-trainer Carol Hudson.
Veteran greyhound Pedro Cerrano (Where's Pedro x Chasing Diana Aug '13) also booked his spot in the final when finishing one and one quarter lengths behind Viva Opal – a win in the decider will take his earnings beyond $120,000 for trainer John Little and his owners, P & D Tweddle.
Amazingly, all four heats were won from boxes one or two, highlighting the importance of a good box draw in big races.
Chase The Cash has drawn the coveted rails alley for the decider and is a $6 chance of capturing the title.
The Group 2 Gosford Cup will be run next Tuesday and is worth $40,000 to the winner.
Group 2 Gosford Cup – box draw
1. Chase The Cash
2. Wait There
3. Pedro Cerrano
4. One Required
5. Miss Splendamiro
6. Barking Bad
7. Viva Opal
8. Cosmic Bonus
9. Utah Miss
10. Barton Bale