ANDREA Dailly’s star bitches Kerrigan Bale and Spring Leaf were at their brilliant best at Wentworth Park on Saturday night in winning their semi-finals of the Group 1 National Futurity.
The first semi was all about Kerrigan Bale with the consistent Victorian sent to the boxes as the $1.50 favourite from the one.
When the lids flew open Jingjing (box three) exploded from the boxes with Kerrigan Bale pushing up along the rail into second position. Despite stepping off around the first turn, the daughter of High Earner and Maple Bale was able to hold on to her position and set off in pursuit of the lamplighter, eventually finding the front around the home turn before drawing clear to score by three-and-a-half lengths in 29.73.
Kerrigan Bale has won three from four at Wentworth Park with her only defeat being a third placing to Dyna Villa in the Group 1 Paws of Thunder.
Jingjang ran a gutsy second for Chris Nutt while another Dailly runner in Polly Bale filled the trifecta.
In the second semi-final Jason Mackay’s Assertive Bella (box 2) started the favourite but she was out of action early following a slow beginning. Spring Leaf on the other hand shanghaied out of the boxes, crossing from box seven and never really looking in danger, defeating Weblec Belle by three-and-a-quarter lengths in a flying 29.50.
Spring Leaf has now won 14 races from 40 career starts with 10 minor placings and more than $70,000 in prizemoney earnings.
The third and final semi-final was the only one to go to a locally-trained greyhound with Zipping Midge triumphing in the final stages for Hunter Valley conditioner Mackay.
Stepping cleanly from box three, the daughter of Fabregas and Zipping Jewel slipped into second position behind Dyna Nico (box 5) around the first turn, trailing by around three lengths by the time they ran past the 720-metre boxes.
Once she balanced up, the black bitch began taking ground off the leader, hooking to its outside around the home turn and accelerating in the straight, claiming the lead in the final stages to record a terrific 29.82 win.
Dyna Nico held on for second spot for Andrea Dailly with Zipping Abby finishing third.
The final of the Group 1 National Futurity will be run next Saturday night and will offer $75,000 to the winner.
Group 1 National Futurity final box draw
1 Spring Leaf
2 Polly Bale
3 Dyna Nico
4 Kerrigan Bale
5 Ella Has Class
6 Zipping Midge
8 Weblec Bale
9 Zipping Abby
10 Eyes Adorable