Exiting box five, the same draw he had in his heat victory, the black son of up and coming sire Cosmic Chief began well and shared the lead with Yellowrock Magic as the field neared the first turn. It was clear after box rise that the race favourite Hooksy and the well fancied Zulu Zircon would find the going tough after beginning moderately from the awkward draws of four and seven respectively.
Meanwhile Ride The Rails and Yellowrock Magic duelled for the early lead, while the red runner, See Him First angled for a run inside the pair. Ride The Rails, showing great track sense, allowed himself enough room to keep clear of the two greyhounds inside him and, as the bend neared, accelerated brilliantly, taking a clear lead, before racing right away in the home straight to win convincingly.
When the judge called a halt, Ride The Rails finished 7 ½ lengths to the good of Hooksy, who ran on well, with Zulu Zircon a further 2 lengths away in third place. Ride The Rails completed the journey in a superb 25.18.
The runs of the second placed greyhound Hooksy and third placed Zulu Zircon were both excellent, as they both made good ground from back in the field and neither would have lost too many followers with their respective performances.
The Ballarat victory was Ride The Rails 13th career win and took his stake earnings to just over $67,000. Lara based Trainer Darren Brown has enjoyed two stellar weeks at Ballarat, as his smart bitch Magic Diva took out the Lil Dickie Oaks a week earlier. In a strange co-incidence, both victories for Brown came from the dreaded yellow box.
ARG spoke to Darren to congratulate him on his two feature race victories at Ballarat and asked him about his career training greyhounds and his love of the long tails.
“Dad and I are a training team, Dad has been around greyhounds since he was a kid and he and I work together”, Darren said.
When questioned about how the Brown team acquired Ride The Rails, Darren told how he and his daughter, 6 year old Mikayla, picked him out as a youngster.
“We bought him as an untried pup at 13 or 14 months of age. My daughter Mikayla picked him out of three pups that were available. He only broke in fairly; perhaps a little better than a Grade Five dog, but has really peaked in the past six weeks. We were a little disappointed he was not selected directly into the top 56 in the Australian Cup rankings, and therefore had to go through the elimination heats, where he finished a close second.”
“He is a reserve for the Australian Cup Heats on Saturday night and he will need a scratching in order to gain a start”, Darren explained.
When queried on future aspirations for the smart chaser, Darren said perhaps a race like the Horsham Cup may be on agenda, although he said a final decision would be made, after the Australian Cup was over.
Without doubt, whichever event Ride The Rails contests next, he is sure to make his presence felt.