SOUTH WAIKATO CUP KENNEL HAT TRICK
Rangiriri trainer Denis Schofield made it a hat trick of South Waikato Cup wins when he produced Blazing Spirit to produce a pace-making victory in Sunday’s $6,000 457m event. Pictured: Tokoroa GRC Secretary Linda Martin presenting the South Waikato Cup to Blazing Spirit’s handler Corey Steele
Good Return (2015) and Fantastic Sid (2016) had previously won the Tokoroa Club’s flagship race for Schofield during their annual TAB meeting which they host at the Cambridge Raceway. Schofield started three greyhounds in Sunday’s edition which finished up as a seven dog field.
Our Sambo showed early pace from the two trap, however Blazing Spirit promptly railed underneath him to seized the race lead, which he was never going to hand up to his opponents. The wearer of the red racing vest railed nicely to claim his feature win by a 1.25 length margin, clocking 25.60s.
Warm race favourite Timmy Trumpet didn’t make the best of beginnings from trap-eight and he had to do a fair amount of work when pushing around the outer. He was the widest runner when turning in for the long grind home up the Cambridge straight. He stoutly knuckled down to his task and extended to claim the runners up prize for his trainer Karen Walsh.
It was the Cambridge Thursday C4/5 457m winner Lochinvar Brogue who pressed on solidly during the run home to claim third also for Schofield a further length behind. He shaded a gallant Our Sambo, who is trained by 90 year old Max Mathews, by three-quarters of a length.
South Waikato Cup winner Blazing Spirit with Naomi O’Regan, Corey Steele and Tokoroa GRC Secretary Linda Martin; the full post race South Waikato Cup podium; a traditional part of the annual Tokoroa hosted meeting is a series of Kidz Kartz harness races
It was a brilliantly fine, warm Waikato afternoon for the 13 race card. Interspersed between the greyhound races was series of now traditional races conducted by the Waikato Kidz Kartz club, for junior (school age) harness drivers held during the Tokoroa meeting. Here’s a pictorial round up the Tokoroa winners, who all received a trophy from the South Waikato club.
Long time Tokoroa member Max Mathews celebrates his birthday during his club’s race meeting – Sunday’s meeting was Max’s 90th birthday. In keeping with tradition Max again challenged everyone to join him for next year’s Tokoroa meeting. Max is seen here presenting Karen Walsh with the trophy for the Happy 90th Birthday Max Mathews Stakes won by Thrilling Wilson; the opening Maiden sprint was taken out by the Keith Toomer trained Toominator; the first of the Denis Schofield prepared winners was Chapel Hill, who made it two Maiden 457m race wins for the week
Karen Walsh trained Thrilling Rocky to win his 375m dash, seen here with his Ireland bound handler Taylor Thornton; Ross Udy had family members join him at the podium after Raging Demon won his sprint for Ross and his co-trainer wife Lynn; Sun Is Shining was also a dual Cambridge winner for Ben Craik during the week, seen here with co-owners Ray Waters (left) and Selwyn Loader
Trainer Steve Clarke mentored Jimmy’s Rocket to a pair of Cambridge 457m wins during the week, he’s with handler Emma Potts after Sunday’s win; Trainer Rob Roper brought his family south to watch his charge Gee Thunder win his C2 downgrade sprint; Another downgrading winner was Clockwise Rap from the Phil Green kennels, seen here with handler Keith Toomer
Iolaus slipped around the outer to win his sprint for Shirley Ross; using wide racing tactics didn’t prevent Blame The Clown from winning his sprint for Tom Patton; Denis Schofield completed a very successful afternoon for his kennels when training Bold Sassy to win the last race 457m event
By Peter Fenemor