Queensland chaser Anti Dentite will continue his charge toward Group 1 glory when he lines up in a semi-final of the Group 1 Silver Chief at The Meadows in Melbourne on Saturday night.
The Stephen Rolph-trained son of Turanza Bale and Sister Ping progressed to round two of the series when leading most of the way in the opening heat last Saturday night before being run down by the promising Igor Karkakoff in 30.22.
Rolph says he was impressed with his charge’s performance.
“He had to lead to win or to go through. The reason I went down there was his early pace. He was well boxed, and when he jumped to the front and nearly held on, I was very happy considering the circumstances.”
It was a bold performance considering that Anti Dentite had a less than ideal preparation. He raced in a 520m final at Ipswich on Tuesday and ran out of time for a trial at The Meadows before battling 40-plus degree heat on Saturday when settling in.
He will take his place from box six on Saturday night, and the draw is something that worries his trainer.
“When I saw box six I nearly gave up hope, but he’s pulled up well. He was a bit tired after his flight coming home, but yesterday morning he was back to himself so it’s all systems go.”
The pair will head back to Melbourne first thing Saturday morning.
Rolph figures his greyhound can improve some on his first Melbourne run,
“If he jumps to the front and gets clear running, he should break 30 (seconds). I’m told dogs also improve their first section by nearly a tenth of a second at their second run (on the track), so if he does that, he should be leading.”
The fancied runner in the semi-final is likely to be the Andrea Dailly trained Marley Bale (Box 2) who qualified into the semi-finals with the second fastest time of 29.83.
It was by chance that Rolph came to acquire Anti Dentite,
“I bought a pup out of (Sister Ping’s) next litter (by) Dyna Lachlan from Mark Saal from Toowoomba.” Rolph said.
“Mark said he was moving and downsizing, and he had a few race dogs there for sale. He went through a few of them and (Anti Dentite) was the one with the best form so I grabbed him.”
It proved to be a wise decision, as Anti Dentite has gone on to win 12 of his 24 starts under Rolph’s care.
It just adds to the list of consistent chasers that both Stephen and Hassell Rolph have had in the past few years.
“We had Santino Marella (Group 1 Association Cup finalist), and Potsdam, he won an Ipswich Cup for us and broke down in a National Derby heat when he was in front. (Anti Dentite) is probably just behind them.”
“If he had their strength, he’d be ahead of them, but he just lacks that last section.”
As for the quirky name, Anti Dentite, has caused confusion in its pronunciation with racecallers opting for a series of combinations, something that would make any Seinfeld fan cringe, given that the name draws from a series of exchanges between characters Jerry and Kramer in the episode “The Yada Yada”.
“When Mark had him at his first start, I sent him a message saying ‘Is Seinfeld going to win tonight?’ and I’ve followed him from there.” he said.
“I like the Seinfeld episodes.”
Despite the name, Anti Dentite has proven he’s a quality chaser, and given that he has had only 39 starts and is only 2 and a half years of age he has plenty of racing left ahead of him, but the first objective is Saturday night’s race and a chance at Group 1 glory for the Rolph’s.