Greyhound racing’s Top Gun will be staged at the Meadows in Melbourne on W.S. Cox Plate night – Saturday October 27.
The date is very appropriate, given that the Top Gun, for eight invited sprinters, resembles in many respects Australia’s weight for age championship for the gallopers.
The Melbourne Greyhound Racing Association has issued invitations to connections of 23 greyhounds to nominate for the $150,000 to the winner 525 metres Top Gun.
Two Queenslanders – Don’t Knocka Him for Reg Kay and Glen Gallon for Tony Brett, are among the invitees.
Les Bein, who owns last Thursday’s Sister Cities Cup winner Bogie King, and the dog’s trainer Ryan Ayre are taking advantage of a clause which will see Bogie King considered for a late invitation into the Top Gun.
The conditions of the race state that ‘’the club reserves the right to extend late invitations which may be the situation given the timing of the Adelaide Cup heats. Trainers are welcome to put forward their case for consideration, however the panel ruling will be final.’’
Bogie King (pictured) is racing in a heat of the Adelaide Cup tomorrow night, drawn box six.
Bein said he is contacting MGRA general manager Marg Long today to express interest in a late invitation.
‘’The dog hadn’t raced much in the few weeks prior to the Top Gun invitations being released. So in a way I can understand him being overlooked at that stage. But his win in the Sister Cities Cup last week in Adelaide was a top run, he ran smart time of 29.78. If he can win tomorrow night, that would push his cause even more to go into the Top Gun field,’’ Bein added.
Bogie King ran third to Allen Harper and Radley Bale in the Top Gun last year, starting from box four.
‘’He got pollaxed at the home turn, otherwise may have run second,’’ Bein stated.
‘’It’s a great race and a wonderful experience to have a runner. We got $20,000 for running third last year and they have put the prizemoney up this year. Hopefully we might be there for another crack at the race.’’
If so, it would be the fourth attempt for Bein to own a Top Gun winner. In 2003, his Hall of Fame star Bogie Leigh ran third to Bombastic Shiraz and Spring Secret in the Top Gun at the Meadows. In 2004, Bogie Leigh finished sixth to Whisky Assassin, the race run that year at Sandown.
New South Wales sprinter Transcend Time is in a similar situation to Bogie King at the moment. Since the original Top Gun invitations were sent out, the Mark Azzopardi trained dog won the group 2 Bob Payne Sprint final at Wentworth Park last Saturday night. A late invitation to nominate for the Top Gun would be appropriate for Transcend Time, should connections decide to request one.
Glen Gallon and Don’t Knocka Him will contest heats of the group three Gold Coast Cup at Albion Park tomorrow night.
The 23 initial invitees for the Top Gun are: WESTERN AUSTRALIA: Hot Irish. QUEENSLAND; Don’t Knocka Him, Glen Gallon. NEW SOUTH WALES: Bye Bye Bucks, Billy the Sid, Exclusive One. VICTORIA: David Bale, Desalle Bale, Hutmaker, Jordy Pordy, Leeroy Rocker, Grigorieva Bale, Heston Bale, Spud Regis, Odie for Now, Renegade Chief, Fabregas, Zara Zulu, Roy Galo, El Brooklyn, Godsend, Ima Geisha Girl, Peggy Mac.
Story by Paul Dolan, photo by Corey Pearce.