Outstanding Tasmanian chaser Damek (Big Daddy Cool – World’s Finest) has been scratched from the Macro Meats National Sprint Championship to be conducted at Albion Park next week and has been replaced by the Anthony Bullock prepared Hellyeah Jacko ( Where’s Pedro – Coasters Choice).
The Peter Philips owned and prepared Damek tore a hip muscle while trialling at Albion Park on Sunday night and is back home in his kennel at Copping in Southern Tasmania.
Despite not having performed at his top on previous interstate campaigns, Damek was considered one of the leading contenders for the feature event and his scratching comes as a huge blow to the local industry.
Damek won the right to contest the National Sprint Championship by defeating the smart bitch Ella Lucy ( Collide – Copper Delight) and Hellyeah Jacko in the State Final conducted at the Tote Racing Centre in Launceston on August 8.
Penguin trainer Butch Deverell was not able to make the trip to Queensland with the bitch when it was announced that Damek would not be racing, meaning that Hellyeah Jacko was the next in line for a crack at the prestigious event.
Raced by the Hellyeah Syndicate, headed by NWGRC committeeman Rick Donaldson, Hellyeah Jacko has been to the sports on 115 occasions for 13 wins and 43 placings and a purse of in excess of $32,000.
“He’s ten lengths slower than Damek – and that’s on a good day,” Bullock declared this week.
“Someone has to go so it might as well be me and I just hope that he draws an inside box,” he added.
The chaser is being flown to Queensland today (Wednesday) and will be cared for by leading mentor John Dart.
Bullock, the son of former prominent greyhound racing administrator Paul Bullock, prepares a large team at Exeter in the Tamar Valley.
Although Hellyeah Jacko will be his first runner in the National Sprint Championship, he has had two finalists in the National Distance Championship.
He finished second with Classic Zena when the race was run in Launceston in 2000 and fifth with Excessive Heat in Adelaide in 2004.
Meanwhile classy staying bitch Ming Dynasty (Chinatown Lad – Brandon Sky) was flown to Brisbane on Sunday for her first look at the Albion Park track.
The bitch trialled in 43.20 on Monday and was then flown back to the Brighton kennels of her trainer Susan Gittus and will remain there until next Wednesday.
“Her trial was fairly steady but she will improve considerably the next time she goes around,” Gittus explained.
“We are not going up there with any great expectations, but it is an honour and a big thrill to have made the National Distance Championship Final.”
Unbeaten in six starts over 720 metres since her initial outing on June 20 at the Tote Racing Centre, the Paul Felgate owned bitch will be storming home over the concluding stages and should not be left out of the winning chances.