Friday night’s $600,000 TAB Melbourne Cup (515m) at Sandown Park will go down as a race for the ages. Here were some interesting points to come out of the world’s richest greyhound race…
DID CROWD COST FERNANDO?
A rival trainer – who preferred not to be quoted – suggested during the week that the extra crowd noise generated on TAB Melbourne Cup night could prove to be Fernando Bale’s downfall.
A bit has been made about Fernando’s intelligence. Some believe he listens out for the lure, helping him anticipate precisely when the box lids will open, and that has been the key to his flawless starts in about 90 per cent of his races.
He missed the start in the Melbourne Cup which no doubt cost him the race, and that’s taking nothing away from Dyna Double One, who was a deserving winner.WATCH: Dyna Double One (2) wins the TAB Melbourne Cup from Fernando Bale (6) and Black Illusion (5).
Trainer Andrea Dailly sneakily nominated Fernando Bale for Wednesday’s Ballarat Cup heats prior to the TAB Melbourne Cup, despite rumours surrounding his retirement.
The move, of course, was just in case owner Paul Wheeler decided he wanted the champ to keep racing.
“I’m not sure if Paul knows I’ve nominated him for Ballarat yet,” a nervous Andrea said in the hours leading up to the Melbourne Cup.
Wheeler said post race he would’ve retired Fernando had he won the Melbourne Cup, but then revealed he couldn’t bear the thought of having Fernando bow out on anything other than a winning note.
If there’s one thing Fernando fans will take out of the champ’s defeat, it is that they get the chance to see him race again after all.
The Ballarat Cup, to be run on December 4, carries a first prize of $60,000. However, it’s worth $110,000 to Fernando Bale as he will collect a $50,000 Triple Country Cups bonus if successful for winning his third Victorian country cup in a calendar year. Heats will be run on Wednesday night.
Dyna Double One is the “happiest dog in greyhound racing”, Andrea Dailly declared during the week.
“He’s always bouncing around with so much excitement, which is why he misses the start so often in his races, where as Fernando Bale is all business, which is why he is usually such a faultless beginner.”
From left: A tail-wagging Dyna Double One (with Korie Heinrich), Fernando Bale (Andrea Dailly) and Dyna Tiber (Jordan Dailly and Jake Kanellos) with the Dailly’s three TAB Melbourne Cup finalists on Wednesday morning. They finished first, second and sixth respectively.
There was no shortage of mixed emotions in the Dailly/Wheeler camp on Friday night.
Jan Wheeler, wife of Fernando Bale and Dyna Double One’s owner and breeder Paul Wheeler, admitted to being overcome with nerves leading into the Melbourne Cup, predominantly because there was so much expectation surrounding Fernando Bale.
And the expectation even filtered down to Co-Trainer Tom Dailly, who rarely lets the emotion of a big race get to him.
“Tom Dailly has just co-trained the Quinella in the Melbourne Cup yet the look on his face is one of disappointment,” SEN’s Mark Fine told listeners in the minutes after the race.
Dailly, of course, was thrilled with the result, but knew that thousands of people had come along to Sandown on the night hoping Fernando Bale – who has become the people’s champion – would win. One thing’s for sure, Fernando Bale, or his connections, didn’t lose any fans.
And what about the Trifecta in the TAB Melbourne Cup, with the third placed Black Illusion residing with Angela Langton in the property directly next door to Tom and Andrea Dailly in Darlington Drive, Anakie.
That’s a TAB Melbourne Cup Trifecta for three greyhounds residing in the same street – a phenomenal outcome considering this is the world’s richest greyhound race.
Even Langton herself didn’t rate Black Illusion a chance, yet his third placing saw him pocket $60,000 for the Champagne Syndicate, which comprises of Angela and her mum Sue Smith.
$600,000 TAB MELBOURNE CUP RESULTS
1ST – DYNA DOUBLE ONE (Andrea Dailly/Paul Wheeler) – $420,000
2ND – FERNANDO BALE (Andrea Dailly/Paul Wheeler) – $120,000
3RD – BLACK ILLUSION (Angela Langton/Champagne Syndicate) – $60,000