Fifty-eight of the country’s best greyhounds have been handed first round nominations for either the Group 1 Sky Racing Topgun or the Group 2 Sky Racing Stayers Topgun, with both races to be run at The Meadows on October 22.
The Topgun panel will then meet on Sunday, October 9 to cut both fields down to eight from the list of trainers who accept first round invitations sent out yesterday.
The final field will then be announced on Sky Racing 2’s The Catching Pen on Tuesday, October 11, at 6.30pm.
MGRA Manager Marg Long said competition for spots in 2016 will be tough.
“To have the best of the best battling it out over the 525-metre and 725-metre starts is something we look forward to every year. Last year, we all enjoyed the dominance of Fernando Bale, but there is a much more even spread at the top over both distances in 2016.”
Of the 54 first-round nominations, Pearcedale trainer Jason Thompson is represented by six chasers, including Burn One Down in the Stayers Topgun and Aston Bolero, Buck Forty, Invictus Rapid, Pop The Cork and Golden Easter Egg winner Moreira (pictured) in the traditional sprinters event, which dates back to 1993.
The Group 1 Sky Racing Topgun will be worth $150,000 to the winner (the richest invitation-only race in Australia), while the Group 2 Sky Racing Stayers Topgun holds a $75,000 winner’s purse.
The box draw for both races – once the finalists for both races are announced – will take place on track at The Meadows on October 15.
First round invites for G1 Topgun (525m)
Black Bear Lee
Brad Hill Billy
Let It Develop
One For Me
Pop The Cork
First round invites for G2 Stayers Topgun (725m)
Bells Are Ringin
Big Easy Red
Burn One Down
Come On Fantasy
Miss Foxy Lee
More In Store
Ring The Bell
The Meadows appreciates the support of this year’s TOPGUN panel, including Chairman Marg Long (non-voting), GRV Representative Andrew Mills (Chief Grader), Eddie Caruana (Representative of The Meadows), Ron Hawkswell (RSN & Sky Channel), Steve Hawkins (QLD Media Rep), Nadia Horne (RSN Presenter), Rob Testa (RSN representative) and Mark Duclos (Sky Channel Host).
Please note: Benteke, Shima Song, Weekend Binge (Sprinters TOPGUN) and Miss Foxy Lee (Stayers) have been added to the original list of 54 invitees on the back of Group performances recently. With upcoming Group races to be run and won, the club reserves the right to extend late invitations to greyhounds in the lead up to the announcement of the final fields.