In what is probably a first, Mount Direction father and daughter Laurence Mulligan and Donna Goodluck have qualified greyhounds for Monday night’s $20,760 Shaw Contracting Illingworth Classic Final (515 metres) to be conducted at the LGRC meeting in Launceston.
Laurence prepares Director ( Cosmic Rumble – Icy Popsicle) which qualified for the rich event by winning his heat in the time of 30.34 and Donna is responsible for Gracie ( Where’s Pedro – Smart And Sassy), which prevailed in a slick 29.94.
Both chasers are raced by Karleen Cuthbertson and Sally Wilson and are recent additions to the Mulligan and Goodluck kennels.
Laurence is no stranger to Illingworth Classic success, having won the prestigious event previously with the classy Bomber’s A Flyer (Friendly Flyer – Coral Blue), which retired in 1998 boasting the remarkable lifetime record of 33 wins and 18 placings from 59 outings and a purse of $64,000.
“Director may not be a Bomber’s A Flyer but we have qualified for the race and are in with a chance, despite the fact that we have drawn the blue box,” he explained this week.
“I believe that Rodney Walker’s bitch Bell Oh Moss, which makes a habit of breaking 5 seconds for the first split, is the obvious danger from the pink box.”
This is the first occasion that Goodluck has qualified a greyhound for the Illingworth Classic and she is naturally over the moon at having a runner in the event.
Drawn in the white box, Gracie will be in the firing line for a long way and her qualifying time was the second fastest of the heats behind Bell Oh Moss (Kiowa Sweet Trey – Marananga Moss), which flew the lids and recorded an exceptional 29.81.
“I am not concerned with the draw, my bitch usually begins nicely wherever she draws and I couldn’t be happier with her at the moment,” she explained.
“You’ve got to be in it to win it and luck in running, as always, will play an important part.”
Bell Oh Moss made it three in a row by winning her heat and is probably the logical favourite from the pink box, although she is a chaser that in the past has flown beneath the radar, returning win dividends of $6.90, $19 and $8.60.
If she displays her customary early brilliance she will most likely occupy the premier position and take plenty of running down.
The remainder of last Monday night’s heats was won by the Peter Dalton owned and prepared Willy Wag Tail ( Cosmic Rumble – Ricky’s Angel), which atoned for recent second placings by scoring in the time of 30.10.
A high speed chaser, he has entered the winners circle on eight occasions for his St. Leonards based
owner – trainer, while accumulating a purse of in excess of $14,000.
Dalton will launch a two-pronged attack on the prize money, he having also qualified Willy Wag Tail’s litter-brother Tic Tac Thomas, which is the winner of three of 17 outings and stakes of in excess of $7,600.
$20,760 SHAW CONTRACTING ILLINGWORTH CLASSIC FINAL (515 METRES)
1. JACK O’RILEY (Knocka Norris – Regent Ebony) TRAINER: DAVID POLLEY
2. QUICK ADVANCE (High Earner – Stylish Moon) TRAINER: ROBIN GRUBB
3. GRACIE ( Where’s Pedro – Smart And Sassy) TRAINER: DONNA GOODLUCK
4. DIRECTOR ( Cosmic Rumble – Icy Popsicle) TRAINER: LAURENCE MULLIGAN
5. WILLY WAG TAIL (Cosmic Rumble – Ricky’s Angel) TRAINER: PETER DALTON
6. YAPPIN’ JACK ( Aston Galilee – Patsy Anne) TRAINER: MICK STRINGER
7. TIC TAC THOMAS (Cosmic Rumble – Ricky’s Angel) TRAINER: PETER DALTON
8. BELL OH MOSS (Kiowa Sweet Trey- Marananga Moss) TRAINER : ROD WALKER
9. FULANDE (Surf Lorian – Portent) TRAINER: PETER PHILLIPS (EM 1)
10. BIG PIPPY LEIGH (Knocka Norris – Em’s Solo) TRAINER: ROD CALLINAN (EM 2)