The Sunday Afternoon "Finish On"

SHIMA Classic's maiden win at Warrnambool on December 30 was as commanding as it was quick running 25.06 for the 450 metre journey.

Peter Davis

10 January 2021

SHIMA Classic’s maiden win at Warrnambool on December 30 was as commanding as it was quick (25.06 secs).

She posted cracking sections in scoring by four lengths from Plan Ahead and the victory set up a tasty clash with Aston Rupee in Saturday’s Vic Bred Series Final (450m).

With the regally related Aston Rupee securing box eight, he started the popular elect but his supporters were in strife early on.

Shima Classic – a three-quarter brother to Topgun winner and, now, Warragul 460m record holder Shima Shine – again showed her early brilliance to lead from box two and went on to score in 25.02s.

On pedigree alone, Shima Classic has plenty to live up to yet the Mepunga Blazer juvenile has delivered in spades in just two outings.

What was unusual but not unexpected was that runner-up Daph’s Yak and third placed Aston Rupee both registered 25.10s – quite remarkable times but unrewarded for straight out punters wagering-wise.

Comparisons between Shima Classic and Shima Shine will be drawn yet ‘runs on the board’ can be the only measuring stick and Shima Shine’s record is sublime … a prosperous stud career looms large.

And it’s Shima Classic which adds cred to Shima Shine’s appeal for breeders. Pedigree is one thing, performance another yet this family is in silk class in every department.

 

IN THE BLOOD

While on the topic of breeding, its beggar’s belief that social platforms have folk seeking unfettered advice re breeding strategies.

Responses come thick and fast regarding “Rasmussen Crosses” and 4×4 or-the-like line breeding but it’s really just bulls… as far as I’m concerned.

The rule of thumb needs to only be: replicate success!

Only this week, pups were advertised (on line) by Just The Best – a super sire in his time – which the breeder was seeking $10,000 per pup. The dam’s race record was hardly flash (six wins from 75 starts) while, from four pups to race, she’s had two individual winners (four races) from 35 outings.

The relationship to a sire’s service fee and a pup is relevant at times but asking $10k for pup from such a very, very narrow perspective (the sire’s reputation and nothing else) is an absurdity.

While not in the market to buy pups (we have 27 under 10 months of age), any ad which purports the litter was bred on ‘advice’ just tells me the breeder is ‘clueless’.

Research platforms are readily accessible (Greyhound Recorder, GRV’s FastTrack and Greyhound-Data, for example) yet no well related sapling will make the grade unless well reared.

It’s complicated for some, but the recipe for success is attainable.

G1 HANGOVER

With his surging Group 1 Silver Chief win coming at start seven, Lakeview Walter has managed five wins and collected a cool $117,473.

Protecting a ‘never unplaced’ resume, he started a long odds on elect in FFA company at The Meadows on Saturday night and, you guessed it, he missed a podium finish.

And that takes the mind back to the 1986 National Derby. Jim and Christine Coleman’s Legendary Kid was the favourite but, after being pushed aside by Holstein Boy at the first turn, he finished only third – with Riviera Romeo splitting the pair.

It was start 32 for Holstein Boy and he’d never missed a place at that stage – a truly amazing stat considering his adaptability (racing at Wentworth Park and Harold Park alternatively in top grade) and the depth of opposition at the time.

Just seven days after his Derby win, he lined up in a FFA at Wentworth Park – just a five-dog event – and he missed a place for the first time behind Elvis Bale.

Holstein Boy, being by Fast Sapphire, failed to attract the attention of breeders yet for ‘straight up’ tenacity and genuine chase, he was a cracker.

Pic: Facebook

ON THE MOVE

The Group 1 Hobart Thousand is the oldest race on the calendar at that level and the only G1 sprint in the land – for now!

Providing the window for racing – around other Group 1 events – can be secured, Bendigo is looking to up the ante and make their MMM-sponsored Cup be $75,000 to-the-winner and attain Group 1 status.

“If we do move the cup, we will keep the old date (first Friday in July) for another feature,” Bendigo Manager Troy Harley said.

“At this stage, we hope to find a window after the National Sprint and Distance Championships but Million Dollar Chase series is said to be coming forward a week and this is problematic.

“It’s foolish to clash whatsoever with MDC heats and, while these are different types of dogs (one turn sprinters), our honour role suggests we do attract the best in the land.”

A case in point would a dog of Shima Shine’s quality. Only a few years back, Team Dailly elected to bypass a trip to Albion Park with Fernando Bale and he duly saluted at Bendigo.

“We need to retain the July feature as it is a conduit to the Maturity and the rest of the spring carnival in Victoria and we’re looking at a Group 3 over 425m.”

STILL AT BENDIGO

An interesting sidelight to racing at Bendigo is the impact greyhound racing has on the local community.

While so many small businesses were on the brink of closure during COVID-19 quarantine restrictions, some $700,000 was paid by the club over an eight-month period on wages and running costs.

“The anti-racing establishment don’t want to listen and refuse to recognise the human and social aspect of what we do,” Troy Harley said.

“We kept more than a dozen staff on full wages and they, in turn, support other local businesses.

“A $200,000 redevelopment was completed via multiples forms of government assistance which allowed an impacted business like ours to continue to support the industry and the local community … it surely reinforces the value of racing to regional areas.”

NEW BATTERIES

With the Group 1 Paws Of Thunder only days away, trials sessions at Wentworth Park have been very busy.

And ‘After the last’ trials for trainers with dogs engaged at the meeting reached a crescendo on Saturday with Wow reportedly posting a remarkable 23.68s in a post-to-post slip.

Getting under 24 seconds at WP for a slip is not uncommon but it takes a very special hound to do what Wow did.

That said, he was not the quickest trial on the night with another dog said to have posted 23.57s!