Racing and Wagering Western Australia this week announced three finalists for its prestigious greyhound-of-the-year title to be presented at a gala awards night on February 1. They are On Coin, Star Recall and Zelemar Fever.
On Coin, which was also a finalist in the 2013 award, notched up 11 wins from 20 starts in 2014. Despite suffering several injuries last year, the John Crossley-trained chaser won the Lew Dorsa Memorial Final, Sandi's Me Mum Memorial Final and the Winter Cup. The son of Primo Uno and West On Lee also contested the WA Sprint Championship and Group 2 Solo All Stars Sprint.
Star Recall, now trained in Victoria by Jeff Britton, had 32 starts in 2014 for 20 wins and eight placings. The daughter of High Earner and No Recall made 12 feature finals, with her biggest success a third in the Group 1 Perth Cup at Cannington. Her wins included “The Sandgroper”, Mandurah Oaks, Spring Gift and WA Sprint Championship.
Zelemar Fever is now retired and was trained by Linda Britton. The daughter of Bombastic Shiraz and Noaki Pace won eight of her 25 races in 2014, with her biggest achievement being selected for the Group 1 Temlee. She finished fifth in the Group 1 Perth Cup and unfortunately fell in the Group 1 Sapphire Crown at Sandown Park.
GRV making the grades
Greyhound Racing Victoria will introduce two new grades this month, with grade 6 and grade 7 giving greyhounds the chance to build up more experience before joining fifth-grade contests.
Maiden winners will automatically become grade 7 greyhounds and after another win will move up to a grade 6.
The rollout of the new grades starts on Monday, January 26.
Stars check out Cannington
Six greyhounds contesting the $140,000 Group 1 Perth Cup heats next weekend had exhibition trials at Cannington on Saturday night over the 530m.
Space Star trialled over the 642m distance, as he prepares to line up in this week's Group 1 $80,000 Galaxy heats.
The trial results were:
Allen Deed – 30.29
Dyna Double One – 30.35
Avondale Porche – 30.86
Droopys Bentley – 30.43
Above All – 30.31
Space Star – 37.09
Keep an eye on
After almost falling at box rise, Nightwatchman produced a sensational effort to come from last and finish second in a heat of the Group 1 National Derby on Saturday night at Wentworth Park. If he gets a trouble-free start in this week's semi-finals, watch for another strong finish.
Lock in your diary
Heats of the Group 3 Big Dog Cup over 600m at Albion Park.
Semi-finals of the Group 1 National Derby and Futurity over 520m at Wentworth Park.
Heats of the Group 1 Perth Cup over 530m at Cannington.
Heats of the Group 1 Galaxy over 715m at Cannington.