A star studded lineup has been assembled for the 2009 KS Black and Co. Country Challenge Showdown to be held this Saturday night at Wentworth Park in Sydney. The field consists of Golden Easter Egg winner Dana Beatrice, Country Challenge Series winner Cashmere Queen and journeyman trainer John Lawson who has three potential victors.
Elite Flash is one of the three runners and Lawson is looking for some much-deserved consolation after his last-ditch defeat in the overall series. Elite Flash suffered a serious leg muscle injury during his heat run at Appin in the first week of May and hasn’t raced since. At the time Lawson expected the dog wouldn’t run again but he now believes the four year old will be competitive in his return race on Saturday night.
Lawson’s Future Fund was on top of the standings ahead of the last race of the series, but was beaten on count-back when Cashmere Queen won at Kempsey. That cost Lawson $10,000, but sentimental dog followers will be hoping one of Lawson’s runners can claim the $10,000 first prize in the Wentworth Park ‘Showdown’.
“We’ve had a great year. I’ve won challenges and had the trifecta in one of them, now we’ve got three dogs in the final and I only just lost the series on count-back,” said Lawson.
“Its been a lot of hard work – people don’t realise how far you drive and how much work you put in, but as well as going all over the state and as far as Broken Hill, you go to places like Moree to trial the dogs, then to race, then back to race after the meeting was called off. It’s a hard slog.”
Future Fund has drawn box six while Elite Flash and Drive Up have drawn boxes two and three respectively. Lawson said box six will help Future Fund.
“He needs to straighten up out of the boxes so this will give him a chance before they make the first turn.”
Golden Easter Egg winner Dana Beatrice has been squeezed into the middle of the field drawing box five while series winner Cashmere Queen has probably received the worst result of the box draw taking box eight.
The GRNSW Country Challenge is conducted across 28 tracks statewide with each hosting a leg of the series. Greyhounds accumulate points based on their finishing position in the local finals. The top eight points scorers in the Country Challenge series are then invited to compete in the KS Black and Co. Country Challenge Showdown and race for prizemoney totaling $20,000.
The inaugural Showdown was won by Mountain of Love last year and by 9.15pm on Saturday night we will know who is this year’s Showdown Champion.
GRNSW Country Challenge Showdown Final
- Box 1 – 5235 COLUNDER Robert Munn
- Box 2 – 2272 ELITE FLASH John Lawson
- Box 3 – 1154 DRIVE UP John Lawson
- Box 4 – 1222 ASSASSIN JOURNEY Ronald Steel
- Box 5 – 3146 DANA BEATRICE Rodney Mcdonald
- Box 6 – 5111 FUTURE FUND John Lawson
- Box 7 – 4243 WINONA GOLD Graham Pickering
- Box 8 – 6121 CASHMERE QUEEN Dianne Craig
- 1st Res – 2357 TADMORE BUCKSHOT Simon Ma
- 2nd Res – 7138 IIGLOO OSTI Lorraine Roy