Despite entering the twilight of his career veteran chaser Flying Mitch proved too strong over for the concluding stages for younger rival Bells Fair in the unique Bathurst Greyhound Of The Year Match Race on Wednesday July 1st.
The race went to script with the Mark Vella trained Bells Fair spearing to the lead at box rise and carved out a sizzling first section of 15.38 as he held a 6 length advantage down the back.
Approaching the 618m boxes Flying Mitch made his move and began reeling in Bells Fair however the bold striding front-runner wasn’t giving in without a fight and it took until the final 20 metres for the son of Just The Best and Agreement to overhaul the reigning Bathurst Greyhound Of The Year.
Flying Mitch posted a brilliant 25.87 which was just outside his PB of 25.82 whilst Bells Fair registered a PB of 25.97. His trainer Ashley Lamb paid tribute to the versatile chaser and dedicated the victory to local owner/trainer and breeder Terry Bourke who sadly passed away earlier in the evening.
The highly regarded Bourke bred Flying Mitch and litter-mates Ashes Platinum, My Son Rules and Lily Lagoon. The latter actually finished a great second to star youngster Hesa Felon in a smart 30.01 during the program.
Incredibly the two dog match race saw $15,777 invested in the win pool on the NSW TAB whilst the Vic TAB held just a little less at $15,458. This compared more than favourably with other races on the night with the best win pool being $19,000 and only a couple of others bigger at around $17,000.
There will be no rest for the vanquished as Bells Fair will now venture to Grafton on Saturday in preparation for a tilt at the upcoming Sprinters Cup whilst Flying Mitch will accompany talented younger kennel-mates Your Show Jake and Hot September on the local circuit.