A compelling edition of the $19,000 Clem Jones Cup (600m) is the highlight of a stellar card of racing at Albion Park on Thursday night.
The race will see local stars Outside Pass and Cyndie’s Magic dominate the market after running first and second respectively in last week’s Best 8 event over the 520m with the former running a scintillating 29.63 out in front, but Cyndie’s Magic has the opportunity to turn the tables here over her optimum distance.
Outside Pass, trained by Tony Apap, is arguably one of the best greyhounds in the country not to have won a Group 1 event. She has shown some vulnerability at the middle distance journey however, suffering defeat at the hands of the consistent Chador Kahn as a long odds-on favourite last time out. She clocked a spectacular 34.71 on her first start at this distance and has drawn ideally on Thursday to find the front or position just behind the leaders from box one particularly with Cyndie’s Magic, a moderate beginner at best drawn on her immediate outside.
The aforementioned Cyndie’s Magic has etched her name into Queensland greyhound racing folklore with her flashy “drop out and charge home” running style the catalyst for many heart-stopping performances. She has been a model of consistency over her 103 start career, recording 33 wins and racking up just shy of $280,000 in prizemoney. She will relish the step back up to 600m having won eight of her seventeen starts at the track and distance, and given she is close enough turning for home, could give Outside Pass a scare.
The race is oozing with class and talent even outside the market principles. All eight greyhounds have shown their quality in races at Albion Park and could be there to pick up the pieces should the favourites find trouble.
Trainer Peter Ruetschi has two greyhounds engaged in the event, with veteran Got A Brother (box five) and up- and-comer My Awesome Magic (box three). The latter was beaten in his first start over the 600m but has shaped like this distance will be his ideal journey and he will be running on late.
Northern Rivers-trained pair Fay’s Magic (Fredrick Swain, box six) and Chador Kahn (Glenda Dart, box seven) are both front running types and will be making their own luck out in front. The former was an impressive 30.15 520m winner last Thursday and the latter has beaten the favourite at this track and distance.
Other local hopes include the Rusty Dillon-trained Big Easy Red (box four) who was a finalist in the 2016 National Distance Championship and Isla Style (Brent Kline, box eight) who was the winner of the 2016 Molly Campbell Memorial Silver Dollars and was a finalist in the recent Laurels series at Sandown while in the care of leading trainer Jason Thompson.
The Thursday card also sees the Queensland debut of Grand Prix Dryva (race two, box seven). The Andrew Monaghan-trained son of Zulu Zeus and Cosmic Dryva was second to the very smart Fast Times in the recent Lismore maiden series and looks to have a bright future ahead of him.
The ten race card commences at 6:43pm, with the feature, the Clem Jones Cup, to be run as race eight at 9:16pm.