All roads will lead to The Meadows next Saturday night with the running of three huge invitational races, heralding the start of the $1.2 million Australian Cup Carnival.
Box draws have been completed for all three races (Group 1 Temlee, Group 1 Rookie Rebel and Group 1 Zoom Top), with all in readiness for one of the best nights of racing for the year.
Zambora Brockie – already a winner of 31 races and $565,000 in prizemoney – has been installed a $2.90 favourite for the $145,000 Group 1 Temlee after drawing box two. The son of Nitro Burst and Flying Liddy will be having his first start since a sixth-placed effort in a heat of the Group 2 Warragul Cup last month.
He will take on the likes of Aston Bolero, who also boasts an enviable record of 44 wins from 73 starts, and will be drawn alongside Zambora Brockie after drawing box three.
Interstate raider Worm Burner (box six) will be looking to win his first race at The Meadows, trialling impressively on Saturday night (5.22, 17.90, 29.94) in preparation for his fourth Group 1 final.
The brilliant Reefton Treasure will start favourite in the Group 1 Rookie Rebel after drawing the red marble for Saturday’s middle-distance feature. The son of Turanza Bale and Pindari Bale has been a giant killer of late, defeating Extreme Magic in 33.92 at Sandown before running down Group 1 winner and three-time track record holder Unlawful Entry at The Meadows in 34.41.
He takes on a tremendous field, including the darling of Queensland racing Cyndie’s Magic, a chaser who captivates audiences with her drop-out and storm home racing pattern.
Burn One Down will start at the prohibitive odds of $1.30 in the last of the invitationals (Group 1 Zoom Top) after his devastating track record-breaking run at Cranbourne (699m) in the Victoria Cup.
The reigning Meadows Greyhound of the Year has already won two Group races at the Broadmeadows circuit and will be looking to win his first at Group 1 level.
The outstanding February 18 meeting will also see the running of preliminaries of the Group 1 Australian Cup, with winners to progress to the Australian Cup heats on February 25.
The Australian Cup Carnival is the world’s biggest greyhound spectacle, with over $1.2 million to be won over the famous three-week period (Feb 18, 25 and March 4). The Carnival includes the running of the $550,000 Group 1 Australian Cup, the Group 1 Super Stayers, the Group 1 Temlee, Rookie Rebel and Zoom Top and the Group 3 Vic Breeders for maidens, worth $25,000 to the winner.
$145,000 Group 1 Temlee (525m)
1. STRIKER LIGHT
2. ZAMBORA BROCKIE
3. ASTON BOLERO
4. PANTERA NERA
6. WORM BURNER
7. LIGHTNING FRANK
8. PEPPER FIRE
$110,000 Group 1 Rookie Rebel (600m)
1. REEFTON TREASURE
2. HIT THE HIGHWAY
3. FANTA BALE
4. LITHGOW PANTHER – SCRATCHED
5. BLAZIN’ BOMBER
6. BUCK FORTY
7. CYNDIE’S MAGIC
8. DUNDEE OSPREY
Extreme Magic (TO EXIT BOX FOUR)
$110,000 Group 1 Zoom Top (725m)
1. IT’S A BIRD
2. BURN ONE DOWN
3. TRIP TO EDEN
4. BOGIE BEKIM
5. DUBLIN BULL
6. JAIMANDY HATTY
7. TEDDY MONELLI
8. SPRINGVALE BRYNE
Can Dundee Osprey win his second Group 1 race at The Meadows, over different distances?