Matthew Lanigan’s whirlwind introduction into training greyhounds continued on Saturday night when Zipping Inglis won his way into the final of the 2018 Group 1 Australian Cup.
The 25-year-old from Swan Hill began training in 2016, and within a few short months he had snared the Group 1 Hobart Thousand (with Zipping Bruiser).
“It’s been an amazing 18 months. Winning the Hobart Thousand was obviously very special, but to have a runner in the Australian Cup is out of this world, especially because it’s here in Victoria,” said Lanigan, pictured above with Zipping Inglis.
Zipping Inglis assumed control of his heat down the back straight, eventually winning his heat in 30.10sec, qualifying for next Saturday night’s $250,000 to-the-winner final.
The first two Australian Cup heats were won by Queensland pair Slick (30.22) and Opal Nera (30.04), while time honours went the way of Hecton Bale (29.76).
Other heat winners were dual Group 1 winner Raw Ability (29.89), Hasten Slowly (30.04), Dyna Forrest (30.03) and Chasin’ Crackers (29.78).
Two heats of the Australian Super Stayers (725m) were also conducted, with kennelmates Fanta Bale and Rippin’ Sam winning in almost identical time, a week after they ran 1-2 in the Group 1 Zoom Top.
Victory in next week’s final will see Fanta Bale surpass Fernando Bale as Australia’s all-time highest prize money earner.
2018 Australian Cup (525m)
Saturday 3 March – First prize $250,000
1 – SLICK, John McCarthy (Wivenhoe Pocket, QLD)
2 – DYNA FORREST, Correy Grenfell (Avalon, VIC)
3 – CHASIN’ CRACKERS, Glenn Rounds (Devon Meadows, VIC)
4 – RAW ABILITY, Anthony Azzopardi (Myrniong, VIC)
5 – ZIPPING INGLIS, Matthew Lanigan (Swan Hill, VIC)
6 – OPAL NERA, Tony Brett (Grandchester, QLD)
7 – HASTEN SLOWLY, Angela Langton (Anakie, VIC)
8 – HECTON BALE, Andrea Dailly (Anakie, VIC)
9 – EXTREME MAGIC, Seona Thompson (Pearcedale, VIC)
10 – DYNA CHANCER, Correy Grenfell (Avalon, VIC)
Saturday 3 March – First prize $100,000
1 – FANTA BALE, Robert Britton (Lara, VIC)
2 – BOLT LIKE BEKIM, Robert Britton (Lara, VIC)
3 – MAGIC HORNET, Raymond Burman (Park Ridge, QLD)
4 – RIPPIN’ SAM, Robert Britton (Lara, VIC)
5 – QUICK JAGGER, Christopher Halse (Nambeelup, WA)
6 – SHARP DIAMOND, Wayne Vassallo (Devon Meadows, VIC)
7 – AZKABAN, Seona Thompson (Pearcedale, VIC)
8 – MICK’S ANGEL, Allan Meyer (Hoppers Crossing, VIC)
9 – PACKEY KEEPING, Brett Bravo (Lovely Banks, VIC)
10 – EBBY RIPPER, Michael Eberand (Oakville, NSW)
CLICK HERE FOR FULL RESULTS
Fanta Bale with AFL great Brent ‘Booma’ Harvey and handler Peter Riley after winning her Australian Super Stayers heat. Pictures by Clint Anderson.