A flawless display from Dyna Villa ($3.50) saw the greyhound claim the most prize money ever given away in an Australian greyhound race in Friday night’s $600,000 TAB Melbourne Cup at Sandown Park.
Breeder Paul Wheeler found himself short of something to say in the initial moments following the Jenny Hunt-trained Dyna Villa’s all-the-way victory from Box 8, which saw him claim a $420,000 first prize.
“I’m lost for words…I’m shaking,” were Wheeler’s first words after the win in 29.361sec.
After taking a moment to compose himself, the NSW breeder continued…
“This is unbelievable…he did what he had to do to win the race. He cleared them at the first turn, and that was the critical part. And he kept going so it was terrific.”
It was almost 15 years to the day since Wheeler won the first of his three Melbourne Cups, when new-kid-on-the-block Kantarn Bale blew greyhound racing’s 1999 field away in just his ninth start, and there were some clear similarities about the way in which Dyna Villa won on Friday.
Like Kantarn Bale, Dyna Villa found the early lead from box 8 to win the Melbourne Cup, but the most interesting likeness about the pair is that they were both the youngest greyhounds in the race on the night.
Kantarn Bale was an incredibly young 21 months old when winning the Melbourne Cup, while Dyna Villa is 25 months old, making him the youngest in last night’s race by three months.
While Wheeler wasn’t about to start comparing Dyna Villa (Collision – Roxio Bale) to his GRV Hall of Fame inductee, he had no trouble heaping the praise on his newest superstar.
“He’s not a renowned beginner, so it was a mighty effort for a dog his age to do what he did tonight.”
“I’ve been in greyhound racing too long to ever get confident during a race, but when he turned for home four or five (lengths) in front he was looking pretty good,” Wheeler said.
Sandown Park is no place for the faint-hearted, yet Dyna Villa’s dominance of the track is like few greyhounds before him. He has now won eight from eight at the venue that many experts consider the toughest greyhound track to win at, while he is also unbeaten in four starts from Box 8 in his career.
Dyna Villa’s overall record stands at 14 wins from 22 starts, while the $420,000 first prize saw his earnings spiral up to $466,000 as he defeated NSW greyhound Chica Destacada by two lengths, with Keybow third.