On November 10 the boom Queensland short-course star Anja (Collision x Dulcinea) ventured to Lismore and continued the sensational beginning of her career by scoring a very good and determined win over 420 metres on the northern NSW circuit.
The black bitch, trained by Frank Hancock, stretched her career record to 10 wins from 10 starts, thereby equalling the effort of another Queensland greyhound, Bearability, who won his first 10 race starts back in 1997-1998.
The only Queensland greyhounds who have had a better start to their careers are Ace Boy, who won his first 11 outings in 2002, and Elite State, who scored 13 successive wins before tasting defeat for the first time, in 2003.
Whether Anja will be able to continue in this incredible vein of form and stretch her undefeated record to a point where she equals that of Elite State, and maybe gets to match the Australian record of winning at her first 14, held by Promises Free, only time will tell.
Already Anja has made a huge impression. She started her career in a maiden over 395 metres at Albion Park on 26 August this year, winning by a just over four lengths from box one in a solid 22.70.
She then reeled off a series of hollow victories over the same distance from a variety of boxes, leading all the way to score by as much as 10 lengths. In fact, Anja has an aggregate of 54 lengths from her 10 wins, and I doubt if there have been many greyhounds who average 5.4 lengths per win over races of 420 metres or less.
Anja equalled Mr Babicci’s 395-metre track record on October 25, although she only scored by just under seven lengths.
Her closest race came on November 4 when she had to pull out all the stops to chase down Knock For Me before scoring by only three-quarters of a length.
Her victory at Lismore showed Anja is definitely capable of, and is probably now looking for, more ground. From box seven she wasn’t all that quick to begin and it may well be given how the race was run that she was fortunate in being drawn wide. She chased hard around the outside of the field and went to the line strongly.
Her time of 24.33 was well outside the best of the night (24.01) and a long way from the track record of 23.74, held by the brilliant Paw Licking, but Anja will garner a great deal of improvement from that run under lights and on a strange track.
Hopefully Anja can keep reeling off the wins to give Queensland fans something to cheer on.