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 NZ Greyhound Racing 
Friday, October 11 2019

Proven breeders of quality New Zealand bred greyhounds were deservedly rewarded with Breeders’ bonus dollars during Thursday’s pair of $12,000 NZRS finals at the Cambridge Raceway. Thrilling Amigo and Opawa Hilary stylishly prevailed in their respective finals. Then at Addington later in the evening we saw Start The Show easily taking out the $7,500 Kolorful Kanvas Robinson Rosebowl.

Pictured: Trainer Karen Walsh with her Cambridge NZRS Advanced winner Thrilling Amigo (pic Sarah - Waikato GRC)  


Gary Harding has been a long time hugely successful breeder of his Thrilling prefixed named greyhounds. Three of his greyhounds contested the $12,000 NZRS Advanced final at Cambridge on Thursday and he was rewarded by the Fabregas – Thrilling Quest littermates Thrilling Amigo and Thrilling Uma providing him and his trainer Karen Walsh with the feature race 457m quinella.


Local trainer Shirley Ross had two contenders engaged in it and it was her trap one drawn Athenais who won the break to set up the early pace, doing a great job in doing so. Thrilling Uma positioned herself in a handy forward position, while Thrilling Amigo was looming up in contention going into the turn after he made a moderate start. The race favourite Stefano found himself caught up in early traffic for his local conditioner Arch Lawrence.


Rounding the big sweeping bend and turning in for the run home it was still Athenais who was in charge however firstly Thrilling Uma and then Thrilling Amigo threw out challengers to her. And it was the current 24.96s Cambridge 457m track record holder Thrilling Amigo who extended strongly to claim his feature win 25.77s.   


Thrilling Uma maintained her strong finish to secure her second placing a length behind her brother, while she held a 1.25 margin over a gallant Athenais (Fast Archer – Fleur Du Liys) who in turn held the same margin over the fast-finishing Stefano (Fast Archer – Trilise).


For Thrilling Amigo this was his 13th career win, while he has placed in a further ten races which now sees his stake earnings sitting at $38,972 (excluding Breeders’ bonus payments). He holds sound claims on being able to expand on that total when he contests Monday’s running of the $6,500 Outback Trading Manawatu Cup.  




The full Waikato Thursday 457m NZRS Advanced final podium with winner Thrilling Amigo and trainer Karen Walsh, while Mark Smith brought back runner up and the third-placed Athenais is with her trainer Shirley Ross; confirmation of the 24.06s Cambridge 457m track record held by Thrilling Amigo and here’s his mum Thrilling Quest who is still the current Manukau 779m track record holder at 46.08s 


Cambridge NZRS Distance Final


Opawa Racing has been prolific and successful breeders of their own racing stock for many years having claimed a huge amount of Breeders’ bonus dollars over the years. A high percentage of those Opawa Racing winners has been mentored by Dave and Jean Fahey. It was no different in Thursday’s running of the $12,000 NZRS Distance final at the Cambridge Raceway and the racing partnership combined to produce the talented stayer Opawa Hilary to stylishly take out the demanding 747m event.


Opawa Hilary started as the warm $1.90 favourite from the seven trap. It was heart in the mouth stuff for her supporters when Opawa Hilary was posted five wide when rounding the first turn which saw other stayers pushing forward inside her.


Opawa Plum set the pace going down the back straight for her conditioner Robin Wales, while she was stalked by the proven Steve and Bonnie Evans trained stayer Goldstar Sydney with Opawa Hilary starting to improve her field position when slightly worse than midfield.


The race result became obvious when Opawa Hilary seized her favoured railing possie on the final turn, and from there she quickly took the thick end of the stake from her rival’s paws when she extended strongly during the run home to cruise clear for her easy 3.75 length win, clocking 43.54s.


Goldstar Sydney (Know Peace – Noble Fantasy) maintained her solid effort and she was rewarded with the runners up prize. Finishing stoutly a further half a length behind to claim third was the consistent Glennis Farrell prepared Go Angel (Dyna Lachlan – Opawa Angela). Putting in a real eye-catching finish for fourth the same margin back was the C0D assessed stayer Little Apple (Bekim Bale – Ambilight) for her trainers Wayne and Tracey Steele.


Opawa Hilary represented New Zealand in the recent Aussie Nationals Distance final in Perth where she suffered from an impeded racing passage. This daughter of Barcia Bale and Opawa Michelle has now contested 47 races for ten wins and 19 minor placings. You can expect her to build on her current $65,908 stakes level as she heads towards some of the big-ticket staying events for her owner and breeders.      



Opawa Hilary is seen at the Waikato podium with her handler Jed Roberts, while she is flanked by the runner up Goldstar Sydney, who was handled by Josh Lane, while Geoff Farrell brought back the third-placed Go Angel, who incidentally was also bred and is raced by Opawa Racing; Opawa Hilary after her NZ Nationals Distance 732m win


Kolorful Kanvas Robinson Rosebowl.


The feature Thursday chasing action continued later in the evening at the Addington Raceway where a small but talented five dog field paraded to the 520m traps to contest the $7,500 Kolorful Kanvas Robinson Rosebowl.


Start The Show was installed as the $2.20 race favourite for his trainer Ray Adcock. He didn’t jump away from the two trap as quickly as he can, however, settled in a handy enough position when rounding the first turn. There was interference heading into the first turn when Know State (Gary Cleeve) and Avenger Bale (Craig Roberts) tangled up, which effectively ended any claims held by this pair.


Egomaniacal led around the first turn for his trainer Dan Roberts, tracked by Star The Show with Dyna Varsity just in behind them for his mentor Craig Roberts. Towards the end of the back straight Start, The Show railed underneath Egomaniacal and slipped clear to easily land his feature race win in 30.19s. Dyna Varsity pressed on during the run home for his second placing 3.5 lengths behind the winner, while holding a 3.75 length margin over the third-placed Egomaniacal.   


Start The Show is more than likely to head into next Thursday’s Christchurch Casino New Zealand Cup prelude where he will seek to expand on his 11 wins, 25 minor placings and $42,051 takes from his 43 race day outings.



Kolorful Kanvas Robinson Rosebowl winner Start The Show seen here delivering an earlier Addington 520m win (pic Dave Robbie);     


By Peter Fenemor 

Posted by: AT 07:01 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email