“We are stoked.”
What was most pleasing for the camp is that the daughter of Collision and Horizon Bale didn't have it all her own way in Saturday night's $25,000 to the winner final, but still prevailed in style.
“She had to do it hard this week, I think she has proved what she can actually do. I didn't think she'd have to get across Set To Shine early on. Set To Shine ran a pretty good race and made it a little bit tough for her, but she did it well. When she got checked as they went through the catching pen I was a little bit worried that dogs might come from behind. Then coming of the home turn, when the two (Smart Valentino) lobbed on her back I was worried about her being run down but she held him to the line so I was very happy with her.”
Before the race, Collins was not so sure that box eight was the best draw for her 28 kilogram red brindle chaser. Dyna Willow handled the pink alley with aplomb however, showing plenty of track sense in the process, en route to her one and a half length win.
“I actually think she might like racing there (Box 8). I was very impressed with the way she handled herself.”
Dyna Willow also exhibited plenty of tenacity. After working her way inside the initial leader Infinite Wish leaving the straight the first time, she was disappointed for a run. But the 29 month old bitch picked herself up and still managed to replicate her rapid 41.92 heat win from a week earlier.
“I couldn't believe the time that she ran after finding that trouble. It would have been good if she didn't get that check from Infinite Wish through the catching pen. It would have been very interesting to see what she could have done with a clearer run early but we are happy with the win anyway.”
Collins describes Dyna Willow as the consummate professional when it comes to her kennel manners at their Lara property.
“She is a very quiet kennel dog, she waits her turn, once she's been out she goes straight back on her bed, she's just an easy going dog, she's beautiful.”
As the saying goes, you can't buy experience, and Dyna Willow had also benefited greatly from her journey to Sydney a week earlier.
“Last week was her first really long trip. I leave at seven o'clock in the morning and just take my time driving to Sydney. The first week she seemed to travel a little bit uneasy, she got up a lot and was looking around at things. But this week I think she knew what was going on and she was very relaxed and laid back on the trip.”
Dyna Willow fans don't have to wait long to see the star in action again. She will drop back to the sprint distance and exit box five in heat six of The Laurels at Sandown Park this Thursday night.
“It was a toss up between the Sale Cup and The Laurels. The Laurels is an age restricted race and it's probably her last chance to run in a race like that, so you've gotta give it a shot I guess. We will freshen her up this week and hope she can come out well and make the final. After that there's a staying race in Sydney on the 11th of January ($40,000 Summer Plate) that she will probably head to.”
Should Dyna Willow return to Wentworth Park and display the same sort of form as she has in the past fortnight, there is no doubting that the current track record of champion bitch Miata (41.81) could well be under threat.
Dyna Willow has now surpassed $50,000 in prizemoney and won 12 of her 32 race appearances, five of which have been over 700 metres or more. All things being equal, we can expect to see a lot more of Dyna Willow in the best staying races in the country.