UGR's News From Around the Country 04.04.2012By: Clint Locklear
Kelsos Guardian continued his winning ways last Friday night in the 1st Series Championship of the American Derby. Guardian led them all the way, surviving a mild scare from the late running Goodlucksterling. Caspian's Place was third, followed by Wanndabadthings. The D.Q. Williams kennel swept the second through fourth placings. Jax Wanda Rinn, Show You Want, Kelsos Fabulous and BM Murphy completed the order of finish.
Owned by John Kelly, Kelsos Guardian picked up the lion's share of the $25,000 Heat One purse and will try to close out the Derby with a win this Friday night. A win by any other greyhound will set in motion a pairing of the two victors for a winner take all match race.
For the 2nd Series Championship, the first obvious change is the new post position order and also the Derby alternate, Roc A By Spinoff, draws in to replace BM Murphy. Spinoff adds a little more speed to the group and will challenge the early pace. Kelsos Guardian drew the five hole and is sandwiched between the probable second and third betting choices. Neither Wannadobadthings nor Goodlucksterling are known for great box speed, so Kelsos Guardian could possibly have plenty of running room. Goodlucksterling continues to show great form and consistency. He was gaining on Guardian at the finish in Heat One. Wannadobadthings, with his usual slow break, was caught wide early on, leaving him with too much ground to make up. Show You Want, a solid third last Friday night, will try and take advantage of the red blanket.
Here's the line-up for the 2nd Series Championship:
1. Show You Want
2. Kelsos Fabulous
3. Roc A By Spinoff
5. Kelsos Guardian
7. Caspian's Place
8. Jax Wanda Rinn
Slatex Plutonium won Southland's Hound Madness Stake Friday night, March 30th which is an elimination event similar to the NCAA tournament in which 64 dogs start out. The Final matched the two remaining contestants. Kl's Fancy was the runner-up. Slatex Plutonium has established himself as Southland's top dog thus far in 2012. Through fourteen starts, he has collected eight wins, three seconds, a third and a fourth. Plutonium is a son of Lonesome Cry and out of the WW Apple Jax brood Slatex Station. He's owned by G. Kirk Harlan.
One of the nation’s biggest rivalries has been materializing over the winter at Southland between Plutonium and Bella Infrared. It's been a battle the five times they've met. Plutonium has taken three of those races to Infared's two. In four of those five, the loser was the runner up. The action will only heat up as Southland is expecting the return of track record holder Turbo Lennie in the near future.
Bluffs Run held their own version of a March Madness countdown dubbed the Bracket Challenge which carried a hefty purse of $60,000. Chasin the Riches, from the Bean & Stout Kennel, took home the trophy and the $33,000 winners share. Gable Warbucks from the Keeper-Red Rock Kennel was the runner up. With the victory, Chasin the Riches adds to his stakes accomplishments. He was the 2011 Dubuque Au Revoir champ and was third in the Dubuque Classic during the same meet. Chasin the Riches is owned by Charles De Angelo, Jr.
Bluffs Run fans won't have to wait long for more stakes action. The $60,000 Bluffs Run Derby at 3/8ths will begin Wednesday April 18th with 80 greyhounds. After four rounds, the final will be held Saturday, May 5th.
The Derby Lane Distance Classic is underway and the semi finals are set for Wednesday night, with the Final to follow on Saturday night. Tiger Boy looks to have found his stride at the right time. He carries a two race win streak into the semi-finals and is the point leader as well. He'll headline the 2nd of the two races Wednesday night. Last year's Distance Classic winner, Magic Finch, is seeking a repeat. He's fourth in points and runs in the first semi-final race.
Here's the lineup for Wednesday night's races:
1. Art Alex
2. Flyin Commandment
3. Magic Finch
5. Budz Crosby
6. Kentucky Fire
7. Angus Mcloud
8. Sovereign Gift
1. Jewelz Fire
2. Donkey Kong
4. Kiowa Wildbraves
5. Kentucky Gal
6. Kiowa Powell
7. Tiger Boy
8. Brother Buck
Offthebrakejake will headline Saturday night's Jacksonville Sprint Classic Final who is a winner in three of four qualifying rounds. All of his wins were in dominating fashion. His semi-final win time equaled the season's best, which he set last month. Unbeatable when he has running room, he'll be tough to conquer this weekend. He'll be joined by seven other top class greyhounds. Post positions will be announced later in the week.
West Virginia bred greyhounds had a stakes race all their own this past Saturday at Tri-State Greyhound Park. The William L. Thomas Memorial Juvenile went as the twelfth on a fifteen race card. The race was highlighted by Jax Garrett, who won all three of his elimination rounds by a combined 31 lengths. Garrett and his littermate Jax Garfield came up from Naples Greyhound Track in Florida to compete in the event. Both are sons of Craigie Whistler and former standout racer Jax Almond Joy.
Rico's Borla was the other undefeated qualifier and Ramsey Ram was just a nose shy of being undefeated through qualifying.
Rico's Borla jumped out to an early lead from the inside with Tough Taylor in pursuit with Rico's Carson just off the pair. Race favorite Jax Garrett was last, but rushed well to the turn. Once on the backside, it was clear Rico's Carson was determined on this night. He rushed to the front and took command well before the far turn. He kept his comfortable four length lead to the wire. Rico's Borla held second and Jax Garrett closed for third. Jax Hannibal nipped a tiring Tough Taylor for fourth. Ramsey Ram, Iruska Pensive, and Jax Garfield completed the finish.
Rico's Carson & Borla were bred and owned Ricardo Pacheco, whose found success before in West Virginia bred stakes races. Carson is a son of Craigie Whistler, out of Myokie Bliss. The Rico pair race out of the Williamson Kennel.
Owner Jack Stolirchick and the Abrahamson Kennel qualified three and took home 3rd, 4th, and 8th place money.
Daytona Beach race fans have the opportunity to watch a rare feat this Wednesday night, race 14. Gilded Sherry, a month away from her fourth birthday will try and go for nine in a row from the six box. You may still get a price. Oddly enough, she was 6-1 last time out. Owned by Sharon Williams, Sherry is a daughter Lonesome Cry and hails from the Pat Dalton bloodlines on the bottom; Gilded Memory. Sherry won 32 times last year and she's on pace to surpass that if she can keep it up this year. She's won twelve of twenty starts, has placed three times and has a pair of thirds and fourths. She's been in grade A for over two years now, having dropped once before quickly moving back up in grade. With as many races as she's had, a decline in form wouldn't have been a surprise, but she's come back as strong as ever. She's had win streaks of 8 twice now, along with win streaks of 7 and 6 (twice). Good luck to Sherry and the Waverider Racing Kennel.