Ken Gill strikes gold in Group 3 Gawler Cup

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KEN Gill won his second Group 3 Gawler Gold Cup (531m) on Sunday night when the consistent Windmill Haze ( x Contrary Mary May '15) broke through for the biggest win of his career.

Stepping fairly from box one, Windmill Haze was able to push up along the fence and was too strong at the finish, defeating Topology (Brett Lee x Starlight Delly Mar '14) and (Banjo Boy x Zardae Feb '15) in 30.97.

Race favourite Worm Burner ( x Little Looper Dec '13) was poorly away off box four and never got into the race, finishing fifth.

Gill, who won the race nine years ago with White Admiral (Where's Pedro x Hazafuture Dec '05) said he gave his charge a good chance heading into the race, despite coming up against some opposition.

“I won the race in 2008 so I knew what sort of dog it took to win it and I was happy with him going into the race,” Gill told Australian Racing Greyhound.

“I thought if he could run 30.70-odd out in front again then he would take some catching – as it turns out he only ran 30.90 but they still couldn't get to him.

“He isn't normally a box one dog – he likes to be drawn off the track – but he handled himself very well.”

The 30-kilogram greyhound has now won 15 of his 39 starts with a further 11 placings and has now earned more than $50,000 for Gill, who also owns the black chaser.

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He has been in terrific form in recent weeks, winning five of his past seven outings, with Gill crediting three runs over the middle distance for having him spot on ahead of Sunday's feature.

“I gave him a couple of 600s before this series and I think they really strengthened him up for the final and it also gave him a bit of confidence as he was able to get closer to the front early and stay out of trouble,” he explained.

Gill also believes his promising sprinter is getting better with age and maturity.

“It took me three months to break him in.

“He was a bit green and he didn't know what was expected of him, but I took and he has matured into a lovely dog.”

Gill had a massive night at Gawler on Sunday night, also winning the Gawler Cup Consolation with Stitch ‘em Up ( x Niamh Premier Jun '15) which took his record to 12 wins from 21 starts when saluting in 30.71.

“He is going to make a very nice stayer,” Gill said.

“He is owned by some people at Broken Hill and he started off racing around there.

“One day I got a call out of the blue asking me to take him – he showed a lot of ability and had run some there.

“I said I'd have a go and he has turned out to be a very good dog.”

Also scoring for Gill was Ruff State ( x Lektra Snap Mar '14) which won the 33rd race of his career when getting to job done over the 400m sprint in 22.90.