Hammer Down nails Cup victory
TONY Brett’s speed machine Hammer Down made a gun field look average winning the Ipswich Show Society Cup Final.
Hammer Down nailed the start last Saturday night, putting five lengths on the field around the first turn. The race was all but over.
Sectionals of 5.29, 13.02 and 12.27 were good enough to see him home by four and a half lengths in 30.58.
Crazy Bella, for Joanne Price, ran second and Peter O’Reilly’s Shakey Diesel was third.
The annual race brings together an open class field. Names like Shakey Diesel and Ash Star are types you’d normally see in a Best 8 at Albion Park on a Thursday.
Hammer Down was a clear favourite for the event. But given his history, the result was far from a foregone conclusion. The dog has a habit of either flying the lids, as he did Saturday, or missing it a length.
Never having been the strongest dog home over 520 metres, a good getaway was essential.
Once he led and poured on another striking second sectional, the others were racing for minor placings.
Brett has gone on record in the past saying the dog could be anything if he ironed out a couple of bad habits. He began his career with back to back 24.7 and 24.69 wins over the 431 metres at Ipswich before going off the boil.
The trainer has to be encouraged by his string of recent results. They include a dual winner at Capalaba, including a third placing in the final; three wins on the trot at Albion Park topped off with his Society Cup win. He seems to be coming of age at two and a half years old.
Brett has indicated, along with Hara’s Clyde and Messy Man, Hammer Down will lead the way for the kennel in the winter programming hopefully ready to mix it in Group races.
Infrared Lad to watch
CANUNGRA trainer Joanne Price missed out on the Ipswich Show Society Cup with Crazy Bella running a big race to finish behind Hammer Down.
However, her best of the night was yet to come with littermate Infrared Lad winning the 630 metre Free For All in trademark front running fashion.
Infrared Lad is usually a lock to be competing and winning in Free For All company over the 600 metres at Albion Park on Thursday nights.
Infrared Lad had been a little off the boil lately compared to his lofty standards, but that all changed when he got back to his home track last Saturday night.
The dog started a clear second elect behind Emmaville Star who won in dominant fashion a week earlier. He looked like he may do it again as she got around the first corner behind roughie Preferred Lies, but in a few bounds Infrared Lad descended and took off after the leader first time past the post.
The dog has always been adept anywhere from the 520 to 710 metres. His mix of pace and stamina were perfect for the 630 metre trip, taking over with his mid-race speed highballing to the line by seven lengths in 37.39.
The win dispelled any thought that the soon to be four-year-old was slowing down, securing his 22 win and breaking the $150,000 prize money threshold.
The rest of the Bella Infrared/Vixon Lass litter are in the picture too.
Brother Infrared Star is on the comeback from injury, while sister Ash Star has been a recent winning at Albion and Ipswich.
Crazy Bella has been in the form of her career breaking 25 twice over the 431.
Double Return a dash specialist
FREE Fallin’ held the fastest 288 metre time on Friday for all of 20 minutes when Brian Francis’ Double Return brought up win number four at the track and trip in a sizzling 16.79.
The run is only two tenths off the track record and the dog is only getting better over the trip, all four of his career wins coming over the dash.
Double Return shapes as the dog to beat in any mix third/fourth grade races over the sprint trip.
Best Fit may be Ipswich
DARREN Russell’s Best Fit headlined a small but deadly field in last Friday’s fifth grade heat, tackling the likes of George Clegg’s Lovely Stunner, Greg Brennan’s Barcol Boy and Pauline Byers Spring Curly. You couldn’t find a better fifth grade.
Best Fit, who has been winning both at Albion Park and Ipswich, used box eight to perfection avoiding trouble on the first turn sailing away a comfortable winner, breaking the 25 second barrier in 24.99.
The dog draws wide in another cracking final field on Friday. Tony Brett’s Aston Poker, Byers Spring Cleo and kennel mate Major Rose are all joining the fold.
Scott’s Saturday treble
FATHER and son team Wayne and Steve Scott enjoyed their Saturday night.
Barbie’s Beach $26, Lazareth $8 and Coopes $8.50 were all long-odds winners for those who were on.
The well-bred Barbie’s Beach out of Fernando Bale and Kinloch Beach knocked off her Novice at start five and looks to have a nice future.
Kennel mates Lazareth and Coopes both fall in the veteran category but have been great money spinners for the kennel and surprisingly were unwanted in betting despite good track and trip records, don’t fix what isn’t broken.
Free Fallin’ fresh start
THAGOONA trainer Jan Warner got her first win with former South Australian chaser Free Fallin’ last Friday.
The Queensland newcomer ran 17.08 over the dashing 288.
Punters had to take the $7.50 on offer with trust. The dog’s first two starts in Queensland were last at Capalaba and last at Ipswich.
But he looked like a different animal flying the lids.
Despite wanting to get off the track from box one, he was strong late to score by three quarters of a length.
Free Fallin’ comes to Queensland with what can only be described as a modest record.
Last Friday’s win was only his second in 27 outings, but he just may have found a home over the short course at Ipswich if he can continually produce that time.
There is plenty of upside for Warner to work with he’s well bred out of star dam Worm Burner and is just over two-years-old, seemingly with his best racing to come.