Western Australian-bred greyhound Mini Emily put in a dashing performance to earn her spot in the Group 2 Solo W.A Oaks final last night at Cannington. After missing the start from seven and dashing directly to the rail, Mini Emily got to second down the back straight and set sights on leader Shereen Bale. Once a slight gap opened along the rail, the black sprinter charged past Shereen Bale and careered away to a 30.38 win for trainer Glenn Rounds.
Many would remember Mini Emily as a finalist in the Launching Pad at Sandown last month, and early signs are the form from that race is strong. She won a heat of that race from a wide draw and a replica of that run is needed from the pink box in the Oaks final.
Shereen Bale lost no admirers and will begin from box five in the final. Her early speed suggests she may be a factor, however doubt remains whether she has the class to outrun her rivals on this occasion.
Mandagery Man gains a Group race finalist as a sire after Olivia’s Asset led all the way in 30.52. Once recent Laurels winner Tonneli Bale made a run turning for home, most would expect the Graeme Bate runner to be too strong, but Olivia’s Asset refused to wilt and held on to win by a neck. Proven Que Tee was checked down the back and recovered well to run third and will start first reserve for the final.
Where’s Dominica led home a Victorian quinella by taking heat four in 30.70 by a length. As was the general trend for the night, Where’s Demonica settled just off the speed down the back after railing strongly and was too strong for the early leader, Tikkabilla and the fast-finishing Aston Elle from the Jason Thompson kennel. Aston Elle looks to have the better of the box draw next week however, as the well bred daughter of Bombastic Shiraz and Elite Oriental will start from box two, while Where’s Demonica will wear the blue rug.
It’s not often we see greyhounds start at odds of 50/1 but it’s even more scarce to see them win a feature heat. That’s exactly the case for trainer Andrew Mclaren when Lady Ashby surprised the crowd to hold off recent Ladies Bracelet winner Darya Bale, paying $50.70 on SuperTab. After a horrible beginning, Lady Ashby got a dream run up along the paint and to snatch victory once the tiring leader Dynamite Jarvis relented to the pressure.
Darya Bale made it through to the final but would need to improve in order to take home the large first prize, considering the winner ran a modest 30.99. Without taking credit away for Lady Ashby, it is hard to imagine the daughter of young sire Surgeon can repeat the dose and should start at odds close to the 50/1 mark again.
The box draw for next weeks’ $52,000 final was drawn on track during the epic 14-race programme. Tonneli Bale and Aston Elite look to have the best of it, however the performance of Mini Emily is hard to ignore. Olivia’s Asset and Shereen Bale will be showing early speed from middle boxes making for an intriguing run to the first corner. Proven Que Tee and Valdahree have been given reserve duties for the night.
$52,500 Group 2 Solo WA Oaks Final
1. Tonneli Bale
2. Aston Elle
3. Olivia’s Asset
4. Where’s Demonica
5. Shereen Bale
6. Lady Ashby
7. Darya Bale
8. Mini Emily
Res 1. Proven Que Tee
Res 2. Valdahree