The first of four winners on the night for leading Victorian trainer Graeme Bate came up in the first heat of the West End Distance Championship where Irma Bale continued on her winning way making it 6 wins from her last 8 starts recording a quick 43.36 over the 731m journey putting pay to any doubt about her staying ability.
he led throughout to defeat fellow Victorian Full Circle for trainer Keith Lloyd by 3¼ lengths with local stayer Miss Woods battling away in third position.
The second heat of the Distance was a surprise result for punters when Elena McLaren for trainer Tania Foster led throughout to record a solid victory in a handy 43.75 at the juicy odds of $31.00.
She defeated Jessenia Bale for leading local trainer Shaun Matcott by 1½ lengths who raced up near the lead with reigning SA Greyhound of the Year Kalden Mayhem for trainer Troy Murray flashing home to grab third in the shadows of the post and just claim his spot in the final.
The Troy Murray trained star looked a little flat during the run and only got motoring late in the race, however, if he can produce his best in the final he does looks the main chance for the locals.
The fastest qualifier for the final was the New South Wales stayer Cousin Callum for trainer Ray Webster who led throughout from box 7 and staged a two dog war with Victorian Kiltanon Skye trained by Martina Whelan for most of the race before he drew away to win by 3¼ lengths in a flying 43.11. Kiltanon Skye lost no admirers in defeat as they both went terrific, spacing their rivals by almost 20 lengths, with Leica Drill filling the minor placing.
The box draw was conducted on course last night at Angle Park for the $36,000 Group 3 West End Distance Championship and the final looks one of the most open in recent years. It will be race 8 on the program and is listed to jump at 9.11pm (SA time).
The West End Distance Championship Final field in Box Draw order is:
2012 West End Distance Championship Final
1. Jessenia Bale Shaun Matcott (SA)
2. Elena McLaren Tania Foster (SA)
3. Full Circle Keith Lloyd (Vic)
4. Kiltanon Skye Martina Whelan (Vic)
5. Irma Bale Graeme Bate (Vic)
6. Kalden Mayhem Troy Murray (SA)
7. Miss Woods Gino Grgurovic (SA)
8. Cousin Callum Ray Webster (NSW)
9. Leica Drill (1st Res) Peter Hurley (SA)
10.Bobby Rocks (2nd Res) Ken Gill (SA)