Despite having failed on two occasions in Melbourne, outstanding chaser Damek will take plenty of beating when he contests the $75,000 Wrest Point Casino Hobart Thousand series to be conducted at Tattersalls Park during December.
“I am mystified as to why Damek did not perform as well as we anticipated on the two occasions we took him across to Melbourne,” trainer Eileen Thomas explained this week.
“He was placed at Sandown, but his two runs at The Meadows were abysmal. It may be that he is just not suited by the track or can’t handle the pressure, but he certainly did not reveal his true ability on either occasion,”she added.
In recent months the son of Big Daddy Cool has taken all before him in Tasmania, smashing track records at both Tattersalls Park and the Tote Racing Centre and scorching to within a length of Lilli Pilli Lad’s long standing Devonport Raceway 452 metre standard.
Damek is unbeaten in nine attempts at Tattersalls Park and has had his colours lowered on only one occasion on home soil, when second to Tombstone Jack at the Tote Racing Centre in August.
An indication of the speedster’s ability is the fact that he has gone around showing “red”figures at all but one of his outings.
Raced by prominent breeder-owners Peter and June Phillips, Damek’s record now stands at 20 wins from 24 starts while accumulating a purse of $50,920.
It will be the Launceston based Thomas’s first attempt at winning the time honoured Hobart Thousand, first run at the TCA ground in 1939.
“I have had the pleasure of preparing handy chasers of the calibre of Billy Jones, which I named after my father, Real Conquest and Big Bad Freddy, but never have I had one that I considered worthy of competing in the Hobart Thousand,” she explained.
“Because he has such a great record at the venue, I am quietly confident that Damek will give a bold showing.”
With the anticipated arrival of several interstate top-liners and the possible inclusion of the Victorian champion El Grand Senor , there is no doubt that the Hobart Thousand will once again live up to it’s billing as one of Australia’s premier Group I events.
Surprisingly, Elaine Thomas rates Damek’s victory in a heat of the Illingworth Classic conducted at the Tote Racing Centre in March, as his best win to date.
“He was dragged down from behind and shuffled back to last, but railed through to hit the front turning for home and eventually score by 14 lengths,” she explained.
“I know the breaks went his way, but it was an amazing performance and one that I will never forget.”
The trainer, who has also prepared Damek’s litter-brother Daegan to win 10 of 25 lifetime starts, is unfazed by all the attention that her kennel has been attracting leading up to the prestigious event and is intent on getting on with the job of producing winners.
“Damek is a wonderful greyhound to handle, nothing worries him and it is up to me to try and have him ready to win each time that he steps out,” she said.