GOLD COAST CUP
The winner of tonight’s group 3 $25,000 to the winner Gold Coast Cup final at Albion Park will join an illustrious list of winners of the event.
High profile sprinters in tonight’s Cup are Reg Kay’s Golden Easter Egg winner Don’t Knocka Him (pictured) and Tony Brett’s dual group 1 winner Glen Gallon.
Win, lose or draw tonight, Don't Knocka Him will be transferred by Reg Kay to Jason Thompson this weekend. Thompson will prepare the dog for upcoming features in Victoria including the Top Gun and the Melbourne Cup.
The Gold Coast Cup, when run at the widely acclaimed Parklands track from 1989 to 2008, unearthed some magnificent winners.
There was the immortal Flying Amy in 1994 and 1995. She would be a ‘’gimme’’ in any list of great winners of the race. To compile a ‘’best eight’’ of Gold Coast Cup winners from Parklands would be quite a daunting exercise. It would be as difficult as the task which the Top Gun selection panel is facing right now, trying to pick the top eight from around 30 candidates for the great race at the Meadows in Melbourne on October 27.
There were twenty Gold Coast Cups run at Parklands. The first and last winners there would have to be part of a ‘’best of’’ lineup. West Cape won in 1989 and went on to a magnificent stud career. He was dubbed at the time as a member of a ‘’litter of the century.’’ El Galo won the last Gold Coast Cup run at Parklands. His race career was magnigficent and he has already made his mark as a highly successful stud dog.
So who do we add to Flying Amy, West Cape and El Galo? The Gold Coast Cup is rather like thoroughbred racing’s Golden Slipper or Caulfield Guineas. If the winner is a male, he usually goes on to a great stud career. Gold Coast Cup winners to have done that, and which would be genuine candidates for a ‘’best ever’’ are Star Title 1993, Hotshot 1998, Faithful Hawk 1999 and Elite State in 2003.
So there are seven names as part of a potential ‘’best eight.’’ 1991 winner Wallowa Flash won Queensland greyhound of the year so is a worthy candidate. It’s probably an injustice to bitches Key Dancer (1990) and Tickety Boo (1992) to leave them out. But like the Top Gun, selecting the top eight is not easy.
Albion Park is now the host track of the Gold Coast Cup. Graeme Bate’s Velocette won it in 2009 and Late Show Lee for Darren Titmarsh and Neil Thompson in 2010. Last year, Mick Patterson’s He Knows Uno stormed home to victory when the race was washed out on Thursday and added to the Sunday night Albion Park card.
Tattsbet has a jackpot amount of $15,000 to kickstart the ''First Four'' pool on tonight's Gold Coast Cup final which is race eight.
ERIC THOMSON MEMORIAL MAIDEN
Also on tonight’s Albion Park card is the $10,000 to the winner Eric Thomson Memorial Maiden, another former highlight of racing at the Gold Coast.
Two notable winners from the Parklands era were Lucy’s Light in 2005 and Dual Enforcer in 2008.
Lucy’s Light went on to become a top flight stayer but is probably best remembered as being the innocent victim of a betting scam which manipulated tote pools when she won a low grade staying race at the Gold Coast in 2006.
Dual Enforcer went on to run a Capalaba track record of 19.45 seconds in the 2008 Young Guns series at the straight track. The dog’s record time stood for three years. It is now 19.36 which the Ray Burman trained Migaloo Magic ran in December last year.
The fastest of the seven heat winners in the Eric Thomson was Darren Russell’s debutant, Rozelle Flash, running 30.18.
‘’I grew up in the inner Sydney suburb of Rozelle and race the dog with a few mates from there,’’ Russell said.
Story by Paul Dolan, photo by Corey Pearce.