Jason Thompson has won his fifth Group 1 AJS Corporation Silver Chief as outsider Godsend ($15.50) strode to a 29.93 win to claim the $75,000 first prize at The Meadows in a fantastic start to the 2012 greyhound season.
The son of Bombastic Shiraz and Sensation Lee began well from box one and skipped away down the back to set up a race-winning lead (splits of 5.06 and 17.74), eventually running out a five and a quarter length winner over the fast-finishing Glen Gallon and the Heston Bale, with both greyhounds finding trouble in running.
Owned by Serg Buccilli, Godsend joined Thompson’s four former Silver Chief winners, including Light Of Fire (1994), Awesome Assassin (1996), Ben’s Fury (2005) and Fedex (2009) on the Group 1 honour roll, which also includes past champions such as Brett Lee and Chariot Supreme.
“This is easily the biggest thrill for me in greyhound racing. We are so proud of the dog and it is great when you have people like Jason Thompson, son Ben and Seona Hood looking after your dogs,” said Buccilli, who purchased the blue blood as a three-month old pup as a repeat mating to Group 1 Paws Of Thunder winner Lochinvar Marlow.
Trainer Jason Thompson said Godsend was drawn perfectly in the Group 1 classic.
“We drew the right box and we had the right dogs boxed around us and it is fantastic to win such a great race like the Silver Chief.”
Godsend improved his record to seven wins from 15 starts, pushing his prizemoney to $111,375 after Sunday’s success.
Group racing continues at The Meadows in February for the Australian Cup Carnival for the running of five Group races, including the Group 1 MTD Australian Cup ($175,000 to the winner), the Group 1 Macro Meats Temlee ($75,000), the Group 1 Macro Meats Australian Super Stayers ($75,000), the Group 2 Macro Meats Zoom Top ($40,000) and the Group 2 Macro Meats Rookie Rebel ($40,000).