After a tenacious victory in the Group 3 Silver Bullet at The Meadows on Monday night, underrated sprinter Farmor Las Vegas will head straight for the heats of the Group 1 Melbourne Cup next Thursday night.
Trained by Robert Britton, the near 38 kilogram speed machine dominated the feature event, blitzing the classy field to pick up the $25,000 winner’s cheque. After beginning fairly from box seven, the black dog landed in third position early before pushing up into second along the rails around the first turn. From there the son of Knocka Norris quickly assumed the lead from Dark Warrior and sprinted away to score by 4.59 lengths in 29.71s.
Britton spoke very highly of his talented chaser, although he admits that he was not expecting a win going into the final
“I wasn’t really confident. Because of the pace in the race I thought he would be struggling to get across. I was just disappointed when the box draw came out because I had the six (Iona Seven) and the seven (Farmor Las Vegas) and I knew he would take care of the six because he wants to get to the fence”, Britton said.
“As it turned out he began better than the six and he got a relatively clean run”
“He is a very good chaser. Sometimes he gets himself into too much trouble, but he would just go through a brick wall. That is one thing I really respect of his racing is that he just wants to win and that is something that is pretty rare in dogs these days”
“He is the type of dog that has been a touch unlucky. In the Geelong Cup he came out and broke the track record by running second which is unheard of and in the Adelaide Cup he was in a winning position on the first turn and he just got completely taken out. With a little bit of luck I think he could have won two or three big races, but he still gets in them- he was also in the Shepparton Cup and he came second in the Healesville Cup”
Being such a big dog, it took Farmor Las Vegas plenty of time to figure himself out on the racetrack. Now with 43 starts for 18 wins and 13 minor placings it appears that he has the racing caper down pat.
“He is 37.5 kilos and early in his career he just wanted to barge through packs and he was just so big and awkward that there was times where he probably should have won the race- I think it took him a long time learn, but now he is really starting to put it all together”, Britton explained.
“He is coming out a lot better and he is running straighter- he used to go straight for the fence and knock half of the field down, and he is starting to really learn”
“Up until two months ago I thought he was a dog with unlimited ability that just did things wrong, but he is putting it together so hopefully he can do that for a few more weeks at least”
Farmor Las Vegas will head straight for the heats of the Group 1 Melbourne Cup next Thursday evening. Although proving himself from outside boxes in recent starts, Britton is hoping for an inside draw with the mad railer.
“I would love to think we could get a nice box in the next couple of weeks because that’s when it really counts. He has the high speed to match it with the top dogs, but you still need that element of luck”
“Hopefully he can draw an inside box. The Melbourne Cup is the toughest race on the planet because it is the very best 64 dogs and it is cut throat- you run a great second but you’re still out of it. You just have to win which is why the draw becomes so important”
Also heading to the Melbourne Cup heats for Britton is the fast trio Iona Seven, Clone Your Own and Slater Hill. Iona Seven was luckless in the Silver Bullet final, finishing fifth, while Clone Your Own will be aiming for his second Group win after taking out the Group 2 Harrison-Dawson earlier this year.
“He (Clone Your Own) is a really high speed dog but he has one issue- he never begins. He needs more luck than the others. When you are coming up against dogs like Black Magic Opal you can’t giveaway the start”
“He has massive mid-race pace but gee it would be nice to see him come out, just once. I watched his 17 starts in New Zealand before he came across here and he didn’t begin in any one so I don’t think I am going to change him. You never know, he might do it at the right time”.