Will Browny be punter's pin-up boy at Dapto
Persistent, heavy rain forced the abandonment the final five races of last week's Dapto card with the Beteasy Maiden Final the significant 'casualty'.
The weather forecast for Thursday suggests the $10,000 to-the-winner will get underway as per the new schedule and wagering on the feature will prove interesting.
Bobby The Brute, a slick 29.64 seconds heat winner on August 22, dominated pre-post markets but, given the persistent rain and heavy track, punters rallied to the cause of powerhouse finisher Zipping Browny.
The greyhounds were parading to the boxes last Thursday when stewards deemed the track unsafe just minutes after Zipping Browny had usurped Bobby The Brute as race favourite.
Firm footing may tip in the scales to Bobby The Brute again but the time differential between the pair on heat night (0.84 secs or nearly 14 lengths) is artificial.
Zipping Browny was badly hampered on two occasions yet recovered to salute by a clear 2 1/2 lengths over runaway leader Secret Obsession.
His mum Zipping Midge won the Group 1 National Futurity in 2015 and there's little doubt this youngster has inherited much from his talented dam.
Whether he gets the job done or not this time, his latent talent will stand him in good stead in the very best company.
Million Dollar payday looms large
Group 1 winner Feral Franky opened the TAB Million Dollar Chase qualifiers with a near record 30.20 seconds win at Gunnedah on Saturday night and the state-wide action continues apace.
At Dapto on Thursday, Goulburn's Zoom Top Maiden winner Lightning Vision takes on open company for the first time at start six yet is expected to given a great sight in the first of three MDC heats on the night.
The son of Kinloch Brae is not only new to Dapto yet he also is up to 520 metres for the first time TAB Fixed Odds market assessors posted have the $3.40 favourite ahead of Good Odds Meghan ($3.70) and Electric Silk ($4).
Heat two (Race 8) is an open affair with local sprinter Lavish Pedro atop betting at $4. He is closely pressed at $4.20 by Show Business and last-start 29.78 secs all-the-way Wentworth Park winner Furious Not Fast.
Top grade Wentworth Park sprinter Cawbourne Marty (box three) heads betting in heat three at $3. The speedy Caviar Quality (box 1) makes her local debut and last start Group 2 Black Top runner-up Good Odds Buddy - successful in two starts at the Showgrounds track as a juvenile - exits box six.
Attention turns to Casino on Friday afternoon where Queensland trainers have taken advantage of the opportunity to qualify without travelling too far.
Tom Tzouvelis has five nominated for the three 484m heats at Casino. Top Odds and Edelman have come up with boxes four and six respectively in heat one (Race 7). The kennelmates clash with Brett Hazelgrove's speedster Dam Slippery.
She's Some Gal (box 3) and Brandy Alexander (box 7) are Tzouvelis' aspirants in heat two (Race 8) while One An' Six (box 3) is his sole rep in heat three (Race 9).
At Bathurst on Monday, National Sprint runner-up Good Odds Harada went within one length of Falcon Fury's track record in his 10 1/4 lengths MDC heat win in a remarkable 29.30 seconds.
Twenty minutes later, Good Odds Harada's litter sister Solar Sky - and kennelmate to Feral Franky - registered her fifth Bathurst win in heat two, registering a solid 29.77 secs.
On Monday, Pindari Express is expected to head an elite lot chasing the $1m booty at Wentworth Park on October 18.
Zipping youngsters set The Gardens alight
Saturday's 12-race card passed without fanfare but two impeccably bred youngsters stepped out for the first time in performance trials before race one and set the track alight.
The siblings, each prepared by Jason Mackay, Zipping Houdini and Zipping Veyron (Black Magic Opal - Zipping Willow) and had been rumored to have trialled exceptionally well before their 400m trials and their quality is well exposed.
First up was Zipping Houdini and he trounced his two rivals in a sharp 22.74 secs while sister Zipping Veyron overcame a moderate start (from box five) to score by just over seven lengths in a cracking 22.51s.
Not only was Zipping Veyron's time quicker than the seven winners on the TAB card, her final section (11.51) also set the standard for the day.
Wasting to time, Mackay has nominated Zipping Houdini for a maiden at Maitland (over 400m) on Thursday and the black dog will start at a prohibitive quote in Race 1 (box 2).
Twenty four hours later at The Gardens, Zipping Veyron struts her stuff - coincidentally from box two in the day's opener, also over 400m.
Tiger returns to Menangle to set the record straight
The harness racing world was shocked by the defeat of 2018 Grand Circuit Champion Tiger Tara at Menangle on Saturday.
He succumbed to outsider Islandspecialmajor which sat without cover over 2300 metres and proved too strong for arguably the toughest stayer in the land.
Todd McCarthy looked to lead early on with Tiger Tara but was unable to head Joes Star Of Mia and he then took an unfamiliar trail behind the leader.
Mid-race, Tiger Tara was not asked to come away from the inside yet clear air only presented at the 400m.
McCarthy had the gelding out in enough time to get the job done but few would have expected Islandspecialmajor - which had endured a tough run - to maintain his presence in the run to the line.
The trio diced for the lead and all and sundry expected Tiger Tara ($1.14) to prevail but Islandspecialmajor just maintained the rage.
Stewards queried McCarthy on the champ's performance and the only excuse he could offer was that he was three weeks between runs.
Tiger Tara came through a veterinary inspection unscathed and will be back up at Menangle Paceway in the Group 3 Vic Frost Cup and will again be a dominating odds on elect.
Whether punters are once bitten, twice shy remains to be seen but never underestimate a champion.
Hoofnote: At $1.14, Tiger Tara's defeat was significant, at Newcastle on Tuesday, Kris Lees' English import Urbino was backed as if 'over the line' but was swamped late by $26 shot Plucky George.
Urbino also started at $1.14 - the new Devil's Number for punters.