They will rug up My Awesome Opal in the final of the Group Three Sportingbet Bulli Gold Cup after he caused a boilover last week, winning heat three at massive odds in the time of 26.41.
ARG caught up with Ross Burton, who admits that, while the run of his dog was no surprise, the result was.
“I knew he could run the time that he did but wasn’t so sure that he would be able to win,” Burton said.
“I thought he could lead in the heat but thought he may be wanting at the end of the run. He isn’t that strong and I thought that there was stronger dogs in the race than him. I was surprised that some of the other dogs didn’t run him down.”
“We have only had him a couple of months, we bought him out of Queensland. We have been pretty happy with him, he has won three races for us. He won at Gosford in fast time and Richmond in good time and he also went well there the other week.”
My Awesome Opal was not originally on the radar for the Burton’s when they made a phone call to enquire about a dog that was for sale.
“When we bought him we originally rang up because his brother Glorified Gee was advertised in the paper and then they told us that they had him for sale too. I had a look at his form and we decided to buy them both.”
“We bought them off Grant Fennelly, he owns Punch One Out. He had a new litter coming into his kennel by El Grand Senor and he didn’t have room for these guys anymore. He owned Glorified Gee and the breeder (Barry Kitchener) owned My Awesome Opal and they wanted to get rid of them, they put them on the market and we bought the pair of them.”
“They both won first up for us at Gosford, Glorified Gee won there again and ran second at Wentworth Park last week, they are going ok.”
While Burton originally purchased the dogs based on form, it is fair to say that they lack nothing in the breeding department, sharing a damline with one of the countries fastest current dogs.
The pair are by Irish sire Fear Zafonic out of Awesome Knocka (Knocka Norris – Awesome Opal). Awesome Knocka is a half-sister to the all-conquering Black Magic Opal (Magic Sprite – Awesome Opal), who needs no introduction.
Burton admits that is was not something that initially lured him into the purchases but he is happy with the fact.
“I initially just looked at their form but have since been told that his damline means he is somehow related to Black Magic Opal.”
When it comes to Wednesday night’s final, Burton is far from brimming with confidence.
“It is a pretty hard field, I think our hopes are pretty slim. That was only his second run on the track. We had put him around without a look at the track and he ran second, then last week was his second look. It is good to be in the race but I am a realist, there is some champion dogs in that race. But he is in it to win it, he will be having a go and we will have our fingers crossed.”
While he may not be too bullish about his hopes in the Bulli Gold Cup, Burton is much more optimistic when it comes to the future of My Awesome Opal.
“There is plenty of races he can win later on in his own grade. He is certainly good enough, but it is very, very good for him to get into a final like this.”
My Awesome Opal will exit box six in the final on Wednesday night, which is scheduled to jump at 7:25pm. His brother, Glorified Gee, is also engaged at the Bulli meeting in race four at 7:05pm.