Former harness racing trainer driver Brendan Pursell provided a major upset at Thursday night’s HGRC meeting conducted at Tattersalls Park, when Lika Whisper ( Solve The Puzzle – Silver Legs) was successful in Heat 2 of the M. A. Morgan St. Leger ( 461 metres).
The ex- Victorian chaser accounted for hot favourite Pudzianowski (Pure Octane – Petal) and Awesome Naz (Collision – Brami’s First) in the time of 26.02 and in doing so returned the handsome win dividend of $39.50.
“The win came as a real surprise, it was a cracker-jack field and he won nicely, we are over the moon,” the trainer explained on Friday.
The Brighton based Pursell retired from the harness racing industry to devote more time to his Bridgewater car-washing business, but after a year or two decided to try his hand at preparing a greyhound.
“Greyhounds take up far less time than pacers, so I figured I could do my business justice and still be involved in the racing industry,” he explained.
“I was very keen on greyhounds as a lad and my mate Simon Saliba in Victoria suggested that he sell me a chaser to get me started.”
Cash Lyrics (Cash Express – Casual Lyrics) was transferred to the Pursell kennels and in 11 Tasmanian outings has won on two occasions and been placed a further six times.
Lika Whisper, which was purchased from New South Wales, has raced on only three occasions for two wins and a second placing and is a great chance of further enhancing that record in next Thursday night’s $5,000 M. A. Morgan St. Leger Final.
Romantic Lover (Head Bound – Lucille’s Ball), a maiden bitch from Victoria, has also entered the Pursell kennel and the fledgling trainer is naturally hoping that she can also adapt nicely to her new surroundings.
Meanwhile Mangalore trainer Mick Stringer provided the winner of Heat 1 of the St.Leger when
Wandy Neg (El Galo – Sophia’s Destiny) defeated Rob Pines (Bombastic Shiraz – Velocity Thunder) and Pendle Beri (Mandagery Man – Mohar) in the time of 26.11.
A former new South Wales chaser, Wandy Neg was sent out a heavily supported $1.60 commodity and has now won at his only two Tasmanian outings.
Two heats of the Charmer Lodge Laurels were also conducted at the HGRC meeting, the $5,000 Final to also be conducted next week.
Stringer also featured as the winner of Heat 1, when well related debut runner Millie Grace (Paddy’s Flame – Miss Bardi) prevailed over Peejay Tadmore (Collision – Baretta Betty) and Roo’s Blue (Collision – Bogie Skye) in the time of 26.30.
Ted Medhurst was seen in the winners circle following the second heat when smart bitch Baretta Bee ( Collision – Baretta Betty) defeated Pretty In Blue (Where’s Pedro – Pretty Larkhill) and Our Silhouette (Scull Murphy – Painted Shaza) in 26.20 at odds of $2.70.