GREYHOUNDS: Swindon well-beaten in BAGS Track final
6:00am Monday 24th December 2012 in By Ned Payne
SWINDON greyhounds finished at the rear of the field in the BAGS Track Championship final at Perry Barr yesterday afternoon.
Clive Oseman’s team had qualified for the showpiece event of the £160,000 Champions League-style competition in fine style, but found their five opponents too hot to handle on a day of brutally tough competition in the West Midlands.
Newcastle won four of the first six races and did not let up after that, charging to victory with two races to spare.
Peterborough were the surprise packages on the day as they edged Hove into third place by a single point.
Outsiders Belle Vue took maximum points from the opening 275m sprint race courtesy of a storming performance from Call Me Freddie.
Andy Heyes’s runner was only challenged by Newcastle’s Remix round the first two bends but he kicked on and won by a second and a half.
Newcastle’s Patterdale Jazz lived up to the 1-2 favourite billing in the standard bitches in blasting past Hather Mango. Patterdale eventually won by five lengths with Belle Vue’s Ballyhill Becky in third.
Hove moved into contention after the Seamus Cahill-trained Guinness Wild led from the front in the standard dogs, beating Killacolla Pedro by a head in crossing the line in a time of 28.74 seconds.
However, Newcastle were beginning to assert their authority and they took a 10-point advantage following the 660m stayers contest.
Peterborough looked like they might finally get off the mark when Marazion Blaze exploded away from the boxes ahead of Cupids Arrow.
However, both Liosgarbh Champ and Swindon’s Sharp Exit were closing in on the final bend and the former won by a head, with Sharp Exit second and Marazion Blaze a further neck back in third.
Newcastle added another 10 points to their total in the standard, this time courtesy of the peerless Nadurra Alvaro, although Garryvoe George pushed him.
A third straight win arrived for Newcastle with one of the performances of the afternoon in the standard puppy, Beaufield Belle finishing nine lengths clear in 28.28.
A first victory finally arrived for Peterborough in the standard bitches courtesy of Ickle Panda in a cracking time of 28.70 seconds, while Newcastle picked up another five points.
Newcastle sewed up the overall triumph thanks to a third-place finish in the standard dogs, a race in which Darren Hampson's Rei Doms Evra took the win.
The north-east outfit then clocked up yet another triumph through 2-1 favourite Kielduff College in the stayers, beating Hove's Droopys Jessica into second.
The final race saw an impressive win for Paul Sallis's Bold Three, but it did not have any bearing on the winner as Newcastle were well away by then.
Result: Newcastle 79, Peterborough 49, Hove 48, Belle Vue 45, Monmore 35, Swindon 23.