A BLACK greyhound which won its first start at a NON-TAB meeting at Wauchope in the slowest time of the day will head into Saturday’s heats of the Group 1 Peter Mosman at Wentworth Park as one of NSW’s best chances.
Knight Sprite (pictured wearing red rug), trained at Hexham by Gayle Masterson, has already taken his mentor on a thrilling ride so far, winning 12 of his 24 starts and giving Masterson her first city winner in more than 30 years as a trainer.
After claiming seven of his first 11 starts at NON-TAB and provincial meetings, Masterson wasted no time in taking the son of Magic Sprite and Jaydos Neglect to Wentworth Park where he has now won on three occasions with a personal best of 29.72.
Masterson said she always knew that “Oliver” was going to turn into a good dog on the track, having purchased him and his sister as three month old pups.
“ I dont know why but ever since he was little I knew he was going to be something special,” Masterson said.
“I reared them, broke them in and now I train them so it is very exciting.
“ I always do a lot of travelling around to race my dogs so it is a new thing for me to be able to go down to Wentworth Park thinking that I might have a good chance of getting a winner — it has just been unbelievable.”
Knight Sprite, currently $4.60 with Bet365, will exit box two on Saturday night against tops class performers No Donuts ($3.20) and Dyna Double One ($2.35), however Masterson believes her chaser is right in the mix.
“I was saying today at work that I was starting to get nervous which I haven’t been for any of his other starts — this is a big test for him and I never thought I would have a runner in a race like this.
“ He has the fastest first section of all the dogs in his race, so if he does what he normally does and can find the lead by the first turn then they are the ones that will have to catch him.
“He is going really well and I think he will give it a good shake on Saturday night.”
While he may not have a glittering CV of Group performances like some of his opponents this weekend, Masterson has a lot of faith in her underdog who has a growing fan base.
“It doesn’t matter what track I take him to, everyone seems to love him. It is really nice to have a dog and know that people like him and I think it is because he is consistent and honest,” she said.
“ His first start at Wenty he was in against Varcoe, who is a good dog, and he has run second to Zipping Midge and has beaten Bessy Boo, so he has raced against all of the good dogs and really deserves a chance to show what he can do in a race like this.”
In total, eight heats of the Group 1 Peter Mosman will be run on Saturday night, with the final to be run on June 20 worth $75,000 to the winner.
The favourite to win the series is gun Victorian Fernando Bale, already a three time Group 1 winner, which is currently $1.16 with Bet365 to take out heat five.
Another value bet on the card appears to be Group 2 Maitland Cup winner Spacecraft which is $3 to win heat four, while Avenging Gun is a rough hope in heat six, currently at a juicy $14 fixed.
Check out Knight Sprite winning at Wentworth Park two starts ago in 29.88 from box four.