They came from far and wide to contest the coursing at Benalla this weekend from as far afield as Yarram, Crossover, Drysdale and places in between. With 107 nominations received and 10 events on the program the coursing was sure to be fantastic and they proved us right.
Whilst we did have a few concerns on Saturday night regarding the weather many prayers were answered and we coursed in sunshine the whole day. The track was a treat and a real credit to the Benalla Club especially Syd Chibnal, Gary Walker and Theo Dahl who spent many an hour getting the track prepared in readiness for today’s meeting.
The first event for the day was the Roy Symes Memorial Trophy, which eventually saw Quincy show he was too good on the day for locally trained Marvel for Tony Grimmond. The Dalton team from Coldstream got their first Double for the coursing season, also taking out the Oaks Trial 1 with High Light Star proving she was the star today over Smart Jess trained by Shane Dervish.
The Benalla CC All Aged Stake saw the first half of another double for the day when Queen Selene showed she’s still got what it takes when she was first past the post over first time courser Uno Mordi again for Shane Dervish. The GOTBA One Win Stake was dominated today by the Jerry & Maureen Maye’s Connemara Girls and today Sky was too good for Fire.
Next up were the Maiden’s and in the Geoff Harris Memorial Maiden Dog 1 it was state against state with the Vic’s getting the chocolates over New South Wales when Steve Burke’s Gunpowder got up over Beaver Menzies who made the trek down from near Bathurst NSW it was a great final and you should both be proud of your charges as they both coursed fantastic during the day.
The Donahue Meats maiden Bitch 1 was won by Balleer Glory for Gerard Rigg defeating Kristie Collyer’s Bullbar Jeanne. The Garry Thomas Bookmaker Mixed Maiden saw some slick times each course by first timer Sprite Lee who left us all thinking she will be one to watch when she get back to her home track a Longwood ! This bitch coursed beautifully all day and in the final she was too good for C Hennessy’s Silver Portrait.
Last but by no means least were our puppies, with a lot of talent around they left us with no doubt that our Puppy Championship, Derby and Oaks will have some crackerjack youngsters in the fields. Robyn Massina’s Steel Beams was first past the post in his final against Must Be Serious. Chuck Pies took out the Derby trial 2 for Shane Dervish. Dave Dawson’s Hare Addict proved she was just that today getting past the post first over Bev Lindsay’s Hide Pie.
It was also great to have the GOTBA get on board with the Benalla Club and run this meeting together, congratulations on a job well done.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the trainers who are getting behind coursing this year. We realise how busy these days can get when you have a few dogs to get ready. Keeping this in mind it is probably a good idea to try to bring along an extra pair of hands or two if possible to relieve some of the pressure on both yourselves and the other participants as nobody likes to be left waiting around because another trainer has trying to do too many dogs at once or be in two places at once.
Also if trainer’s could try to supply a catcher on race days this would be appreciated by the clubs and their volunteers as the catching pen can become quite a busy place especially if you have a block of races and nobody turning up to collect the dogs that have already ran.
We head back to Melton next for the Werribee Cup and J.N.Smith Memorial plus supporting stakes so we hope to see you there.