Stunning performance lifts more winning hopes
OWNER-trainer George Clegg has retired one of Queensland's most beloved greyhounds Big Bad Bob, calling it a day after 137 starts, 41 wins and over $170,000 in prize money.
Big Bad Bob is now poised for a successful stud career.
Last Friday, Clegg was shown there would be life after Bob with the recently acquired Lovely Stunner braining the fifth grade 431 metre field in the quickest time (24.85) seen at the track in recent months.
Clegg said the dog was originally with owner Robert Lound in Townsville where she had torn through her grades at a young age racking up eight wins and joining open company early.
Lound contacted Clegg about taking the dog on. Although the kennels were full at the time, when a spot freed up Lovely Stunner slotted in about a month ago.
Clegg knew he had a good animal but wanted to make sure she was tip top for her first start in his name. She had plenty of straight track work and a 25.30 trial first look at the track encouraging the trainer the bitch may run around 25 seconds flat in a few starts.
Her first run was plain never seeing clear running from the squeeze draw. But last Friday she was ready, flying the lids from box two holding off a flying Sesqui in the impressive time.
"I called Rob (Lound) to say how good was that,'' Clegg said. "He just said 'yep that's what she can do. I think she can keep improving and break the track record'.
"While the record would be nice, I'm not getting carried away we're still a way off and first and foremost I want to do a good job for Rob (Lound) financially.
"It's one of the anomalies in greyhound racing she was a top grader in Townsville and a fifth grader here. The plan is to use up all her grades put $30,000 in the kitty and send her home for Rob (Lound) to breed with."
In an ominous warning for her rivals in Friday's fifth grade final at Ipswich, Lovely Stunner was far too good on Wednesday at Albion Park over the 395 metres (22.65).
Clegg had another impressive winner at Ipswich in Cool Talk, the progeny of Thirty Talks and Bralyn Casey producing an eye-catching win in the Fifth Grade 520 despite being incredibly green in the run.
"She cost herself about four lengths running off on the first corner and coursed wide the whole way but still got there comfortably in 30.88," Clegg said.
"She's got a bit of maturing to do but I really think she's going to make a nice stayer. It won't be too long until I put her in a 630 metre race at Ipswich one Saturday night."
Byers kennel on fire
WITH the help of her son Shane, Pauline Byers is carrying on the legacy of champion Ipswich trainer Col, who passed away last year.
The kennel has been training winners for fun the past two months. The family enjoyed another successful week with five dogs from the same Fernando Bale/Derenger litter keeping their names on the winner's list - Spring Curly, Spring Cleo, Spring Rock, Spring Pirate and Spring Halo all saluting.
Shane Byers said while and mum Pauline put the hard work in at home getting the dogs ready for racing, a lot of heavy lifting was done by the Board Racing Syndicate who own the majority of the kennels dogs.
"Dad (Col) got to know Scott Board through Dallas Beckett a local trainer who was buying dogs off Scott (Board) a number of years ago," Shane said.
"Dad and Scott got to talking through mutual friends and the relationship developed from there. Greg Board breeds the dogs in South Australia. They then go to Scott Board who lives in Orange and breaks them in and eventually on to us ready to race.
"Dad and Scott must have had a pretty special relationship. After dad passed last year, Scott told me he considered dad one of his best mates even though they'd only ever spoken over the phone. We couldn't keep doing what we are now without their support."
Shane said despite the tragedy of losing his dad, he'd left them with everything they needed to pick up where he left off.
"Mum and I have been beside dad every step of the way over his 40 years I the greyhounds," Shane said.
The kennel has a whopping ten runners nominated for meets on Friday and Saturday. You can't go too wrong backing a Byers trained dog at the moment.
LAST week we earmarked the Steve and Wayne Scott trained Farmor Bundys after a cracking 16.97 debut win over the 288 metres as a runner to watch. He didn't let punters down.
Drawn the pole, the big money piled in on the Farmor Las Vegas/Farmor Classic homegrown product and the market had it right. Farmor Bundys was a brilliant 16.84 winner, within striking distance of the 16.58 track record after just two starts.
The dog looks to have a huge amount of scope, missing the start by a length and still winning in brilliant fashion last start. The dog was doing his best work late as well.
Team Scott have elected to step the dog up to the fifth grade heat over the 431 metres on Friday, a distance the dog gives every indication he will get.