Champion sprinter/stayer Xylia Allen will look to become just the second greyhound in history to win both the National Sprint and Distance Championships after she took out the Victorian final at Sandown Park on Thursday night.
The Jenny Hunt trained daughter of Turanza Bale and Tayah Bale (Droopys Vieri – Francesca Bale) proved too strong to defeat a hot field in the time of 41.90.
After leaving box two mid-field, the 31.5kg bitch worked to third down the straight the first time as Liara Allen (8) made all the play in front, opening up a break as the lamp-lighter with Mepunga Tiara (1) in second place.
Xylia Allen made her way into second placing as the field headed into the back straight and was looming large. Eyes were on Sweet It Is (4) back in the field who had found trouble leaving the home straight the first time and had a gargantuan task ahead of her if she was going to catch Xylia Allen.
On the home turn, Xylia Allen wasted no time in wresting the ascendency away from Liara Allen and zipping away. Sweet It Is unleashed her customary run home but could only get within 3 1/2 lengths of Xylia Allen as they crossed the line. Liara Allen hung on for third some three lengths further astern.
Xylia Allen will now advance to the National Final in Western Australia on August 23rd where she gets another opportunity to overhaul Miata as the highest Australian prize-money earner.
The result was purely academic for Sweet It Is who will also gain a berth in the final after qualifying as the wild-card entrant based on rankings.
The win was Xylia Allen's 38th from 75 starts and pushes her earnings just over the $700,000 mark.
She will look to continue the rich history of Victorian successes in the National Distance final. The Garden State has produced no less than seven winners since 2000 including Jarvis Bale, who won the event last time the final was run at Cannington.