Feature racing appears once again on the Cannington programme this weekend with three heats of the Sandi’s Me Mum memorial. The race pays tribute to the late Gerry O’Keefe’s champion greyhound who won a staggering 62 races from 92 starts, with 15 finals to her name, including back-to-back National Sprint Championships in 1989 and 1990. Despite not racing for over 20 years, she sits at number 54 on the all-time prizemoney list with over $272,000.
Focusing on Saturday night, where most of the interest in the series will revolve around On Coin, who lines up in the second heat. The John Crossley-trained pup had tongues wagging recently with a 29.85 performance over the 530m. That flying effort is the third fastest time seen around the Station Street circuit, only behind the early record-breaking runs of Miata. On Coin will line up from box two in race six and will attempt to make it win number seven from his tenth lifetime outing.
The race is made interesting with veteran star Vocal Enforcer drawn alongside in box one, however his previous start win of 30.50 suggests that his best is a long way past him and On Coin will still be expected to win comfortably.
This likely odds-on favourite was beaten two starts back by Saving Bundles when drawn identically, however he found plenty of bother that night, and his five wins at a combined margin of 33.75 lengths is far more indicative of his ability.
On Coin’s littermate, Celtic Coin (Primo Uno x West On Lee) faces a much harder task in the opening heat, when it comes up against South Australian dog, Kalden Kurageous. Celtic Coin’s record is not as impressive as other members of his family, but still nothing to be sneezed at with four wins and three placings from nine starts so far.
While the Troy Murray trained Kalden Kurageous started its career in the West, all of its best racing has been done around Angle Park, so some questions remain over his chances of repeating that form back on this track. Others in the market and with a live chance to qualify include Two Wah for Ben Abercrombie who is hoping to turn the tables after hitting the deck last start, while the usual Quinsee-connected chaser Merlot Monelli is also expected to feature from box seven.
The third and final heat is a far more even affair with four or five dogs capable of running the required time to win. Coloccini from the Jamie Marsh kennel has come up with the red box and looks a good chance to hold them out early. Having only graduated from maiden company in March, the son of Mantra Lad has really come on since, and looks an up-and-coming type now that it is approaching two and a half years of age.
Burzynski is in a similar position with only three wins to its name, however its early speed has been a feature throughout its short career, and a repeat from the widest draw on Saturday will result in a profitable finish for connections. Drawn alongside Burzynski is another dog given a hope in this tricky race in the form of Sharon Monelli. David Hobby has this bitch going well with 11 wins and 19 minors, and she could prove a bit too experienced for this younger field, and another 30.39 run like the one put down last week would take a power of beating.
The other interest coming from Cannington this week is the return of Kalden Mayhem to the track where it all began. The dominant stayer of South Australia raced at Group company last week in the West End Draught Distance feature at Angle Park, and comes back to a Free-For-All race over 642 metres where she is yet to win after five attempts. Freeway Ace is likely to start favourite from the red box, and with both chasers doing their best work late, it is bound to be an intriguing affair.
It would also be neglectful to not mention the return of Miata to the trialling track this week. Paul Stuart gave her a post to post trial for her first run since an injury forced layoff, and she stopped the clock at 24.43. This time is approximately four lengths of her best effort, and it would seem all is on track for journey back to Melbourne for the Group 1 Sandown Cup series, which kicks off May 23. Any further updates on the darling of W.A racing will be reported as soon as they come to hand.