The Richmond Cannonball is a race yearned by all trainers with short-course sprinters, as the final carries an enticing winner’s purse of $5,000.
Four heats were conducted on Saturday night over the 400m journey, with I’m Pedro securing time honours for the night in heat two.
Jumping from box three, the Sydney Wales-trained chaser squeezed between runners heading into the back straight and careered away to score by four-and-three-quarter lengths at the finish. Clocking a sizzling time of 22.35, the son of Where’s Pedro and Dawn’s Memory notched up his 10th career win last night from start number 30 and recorded his second consecutive victory over the 400m distance at Richmond. Justin King’s Flying Morson began brilliantly from box two and finished second, also clocking an impressive time of 22.65, making him a genuine contender in next week’s final.
Heat one went to Princess Syrene for Oakdale trainer Anthony Meredith, who scored by a head in a greatly contester affair. Exiting from box four, the daughter of Prince Diablo and Mark’s Tears took advantage of a glorious rails run and clocked a speedy time of 22.73. Second placegetter Jamarlo for John Jones was gallant in defeat and deservedly earned a place in the final, also clocking a fast time of 22.74.
Justin King was successful in getting a second qualifier through to next week’s final in heat three, after Miss Pocano gained a start as a reverse runner and led all the way in a sizzling time of 22.61. Owned and trained by King, the daughter of Dyna Lachlan and Miss Lolola scored by a length over Death Cloud, who also recorded a fast time of 22.70.
Favourite punters were finally rewarded in the fourth and final heat of the night, when Silver Label pinged from the inside alley to clearly lead throughout, in a speedy run of 22.53. The Syd Swain trained son of Where’s Pedro and Runner Runner saluted by a length and three quarters over Sass, who stuck with the winner the whole way, notching up a new personal best of 22.63. Silver Label showed his versatility after dropping back from a winning performance last week over the 520m at Wentworth Park, and has won half of his 32 race starts.