Breeding: SIRE: Brother Fox DAM: La Paz
Whelped : 18/10/1989
Trainer : Garry Ball
Owners : Helen Gorman, Garry Ball, Eric Baulch
Career Race Record : 53 starts, 28 wins, 17 placings
Career Prizemoney : $180,700
- Winner 1992 Group 1 Australian Cup
- Winner 1992 Group 3 Cranbourne Cup
- Winner 1993 Group 1 Australian Cup
The Group 1 Australian Cup is one of the most sought after greyhound events in this country and in 50 years of this great race only China Trip has been successful on more than one occasion.What makes this feat even more remarkable is that China Trip’s second Australian Cup win came after spending six months on the sidelines with a broken hock, an injury that has ended the careers of many racing greyhounds.
“In July 1992, a few months after she won her first Australian Cup we took China Trip to Queensland for the Gold Coast Cup series. She was four or five lengths in front in her heat and would have won it easily except she broke her hock during the run [and finished 2nd]. We were devastated and didn’t know if she’d ever race again”, said part-owner Helen Gorman.
China Trip was Helen’s first greyhound, and she and trainer Garry Ball were prepared to do whatever it took to nurse her back to full health. ”She was part of the family and almost like a child to me. We drove her up to Queensland to have her operated on which cost us $2,000. She had three screws inserted into her hock and had six months off racing”, she said.
A faultless beginner who “led in virtually every race she ever contested”, China Trip had lost none of her zip on return to the racetrack. In January 1993, in her first start back from her long layoff, China Trip recorded the quickest of her 11 career wins at Olympic Park, scorching the track in 29.68sec, the fastest time of the night over the popular 511 metres.
China Trip’s next run came a fortnight later in an Australian Cup Qualifying trial, which she won before taking out a heat and semi-final of the series in the week’s to follow. So with four wins from as many starts under her belt going into the 2003 Australian Cup final, the defending champion was instilled the favourite at 5/4 [$2.25], ahead of the Graeme Bate-trained superstar Bomber Gleeson at $3.00. Bomber Gleeson was looking to avenge his 3rd placing behind China Trip in the 2002 Australian Cup.
However China Trip reigned supreme once again, jumping to the lead before holding out True To Do [$10.00] by a head, with Bomber Gleeson again having to settle for the minor prize. ”I remember China Trip being drawn in box six and I was watching the race from behind the boxes. It looked to me as if True To Do had caught her and won the race, but [former AFL champion] Tony Lockett was in my vicinity and he said to me “she’s won”. He was right and it was so surreal and felt like a dream because no other dog had done it [won two Australian Cups] before”, Gorman said proudly.