For a relatively small kennel to get a greyhound through to a Group Two final can take a lot of good luck, and good management. To get two through all the way from an auction purchase is something special.
That is exactly what Bill and Jan Warner have done and, this week, they will rug up Masai Princess and Femme Jolie in the $40,000 to-the-winner Puppy Auction Final at Ipswich.
When ARG spoke to Jan Warner, there was a clear edge of excitement in her voice as she described her joy.
“We are stoked,” Warner said.
“We just could not believe it. We only had the two dogs entered in the series. You know, to get one through was amazing, because we are only a very small kennel, but to get two through, we just couldn’t believe it. It is absolutely wonderful.”
A win would mean a lot to the Warner’s and would be considered their biggest success to date should they be able to pull it off.
“This would be our biggest win, we have been in the final before and came third many years ago and I think we may have made one other final but this would definitely be our biggest win.”
Masai Princess (3) and Femme Jolie (4) have drawn right next to each other and both are blessed with terrific early speed. While not perfect, Warner says they are content with the draws.
“We are not too unhappy about the box draw, we might have preferred the eight for Femme Jolie, but they are both good jumpers. I guess if they are going to win, they are going to win.”
Masai Princess is the more experienced of the two winning five of her 24 career outings while Femme Jolie, who has had just four starts, looks to be a very promising youngster who has already attracted the interest of buyers. Warner explains that both dogs were lucky to even start in the series.
“They had both been a little bit sick, it was touch and go, especially for Femme Jolie on whether or not she was even going to start or not. She is a promising pup, we have had an offer for her but we knocked it back, we feel we are going to have a lot of fun with her.”
At the moment Masai Princess is still a length faster than Femme Jolie, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a lot more improvement from her.”
Masai Princess registered her first win over the 520 metres Ipswich last week when she defeated boom pup Oh That’s Nice in a handy 30.69. Warner says she was pleasantly surprised with the effort but did expect the improvement given the way that they have nursed the up-and-comers along to the longer trip of the series.
“Masai Princess did surprise us last week, before the series we had never put them out of the 520 metre boxes, the most they had gone was a post-to-post, because they have got a long series to go through. They are both very young still.”
With a little bit more of that improvement, combined with some luck, it could be a big night for Bill and Jan Warner on Saturday evening.