This time last year, I remember typing out a piece about Glen Gallon’s slashing 29.87 run around Cannington, and how the Perth Cup would be all his with a clear run. Well, 12 months later and here is a similar message again, after the dynamic Queenslander crushed his rivals proving it was no fluke last year, stopping the clock at 30.01 in what was clearly the fastest of the eight Perth Cup heats held last night.
The son of Flying Stanley and Incoherent began well from the awkward four box, and managed to cross the path of Gable Drum and Easy Peasy around the first turn. From there it was a solo trial for Tony Brett’s speedster, as he cruised around the 530 metres winning by eleven lengths. Just like it was suggested last year, one would think he would be very short favourite again if given a nice inside draw.
If there was to be a challenger for the crown, then Renegade Chief must be the first dog mentioned. The supremely talented Victorian is becoming a true force of our sport, and the authority he stamped on his 30.12 heat win could not have been more impressive. All he needed to do was avoid any carnage from the pink box and his strength would always be enough to take care of the mainly local field. It shapes as a mouth-watering battle if Glen Gallon and Renegade Chief can both stay clear of interference in transit during next Saturdays final.
Both Renegade Chief and Glen Gallon will most likely have to come from behind however, given that W.A’s premier sprinter, Hot Irish will be joining them in the final. In a typical Hot Irish performance, the Ben Abercrombie trained speedster won the race in the opening stages, setting up a winning break very early on. Running a time of 30.22 and winning by over five lengths, Hot Irish will no doubt make his own luck next week, and interference shouldn’t pose much of a threat.
Paul Stuart will be represented in both Group 1 finals next week, when Dyna Nalin went sizzling around in the final heat of the night, running 30.21. In a field that included Veyron Bale and Hurunui Hitman, it was the biggest challenge this young dog has faced, but he passed the test with flying colours. Wearing green and facing the breeze out wide for the first half of the race, the Ashom Bale-Tally Bale juvenile finished the race off with incredible power to win by six over One Banana.
Adding another Wheeler dimension to the final will be the consistent Grigorieva Bale. Opening the night with a 30.48 win from box seven, he was too strong for Melbourne Cup finalist General Destini, who got within two lengths on the line. It will be the evergreen sprinter’s fourth group final in a prosperous 44 start career for Paul Wheeler, although his box manners may be to his disadvantage in a hot field this time around.
On the other end of the scale is youngster Hello Good Bye who went around for only his third metropolitan start. One of those previous two metro runs was a blistering 29.09 run around Sandown, so the ability of the chaser was never to be questioned. This is also franked by its easy seven length win in a respectable time of 30.42. Bringing up his seventh win in a Group 1 heat is a resounding performance and he could represent value come a weeks’ time. Race favourite Take It All was slow to begin and found plenty of bother, giving him no chance to display his true ability.
Adelaide Cup winner Spud Regis lined up in the second last heat of the night, but was never sighted as a winning chance in an event won by Harry Monelli for trainer, David Hobby. Spud Regis began fairly before crashing left into Deutronium who had drawn alongside. Both greyhounds lost ground, giving Harry Monelli a lovely run along the rails. With three or four greyhounds challenging the leader around the home corner, the W.A sprinter held on to record a 30.47 victory, the eleventh of his career on the track.
Rounding out the field will be local greyhound Saving Bundles, who looks to face an uphill battle against the class Group 1 final field, after recording a modest time of 30.61. Starting the heat on the fourth line of betting, she managed to reel in the runaway leader, Squashed Banana, before scampering away ahead of her more fancied rivals including Vocal Enforcer and Streetbike Tommy. If there is a couple of things in her favour, it’s the Linda Britton factor and the fact that her Sire, High Earner, is the only dog to win the Perth Cup in consecutive years.
The box draw for the prestigious final will be conducted Sunday night and will hold the hopes of many connections, looking to give their charger the best possible chance to grab the Perth Cup title.