The allure of the Group 1 $344,000 Golden Easter Egg (520m) was too much to resist for trainer Steven White and his greyhound Rare Pearl (Pictured). Recently moving from New South Wales to Victoria, Steven found success in his old home state when Rare Pearl took out a semi of the Group 1 Wentworth Park feature from box 7, in an exciting come- from-behind victory.
“That’s just the way he operates. He loves to sit back from the lead, motor on and then take the win. In saying that though, I think he will have to do it differently this week. He can come out fast; it just depends on the mood that he is in. He just really needs to show his muscle early and push through. The field is too good to do anything else, ” White said.
Rare Pearl has been in three other group events, placing in the $67,000 Group 2 Cranbourne Cup and the Group 2 $90,000 Dapto Country Motor Company Final. This, though, is his first Group 1 series, but if he is victorious, not only will his prize money skyrocket to over $336,000 from just 48 starts, but White will enter the history books as one of the few trainers to win the Golden Easter Egg more than once. He previously won in 2005 with Paua To Burn, which still resides at his property.
Through Paua To Burn’s victory 11 years ago, White has the experience to know preparation is key to taking home the Group 1 title.
“That’s just the way he operates. He loves to sit back from the lead, motor on and then take the win. In saying that though, I think he will have to do it differently this week. He can come out fast; it just depends on the mood that he is in. He just really needs to show his muscle early and push through. The field is too good to do anything else ” Steven White
“We had some personal things that changed our plans for the heat so we had to go up the morning of the race. That wasn’t exactly ideal because it’s a long drive. This week though I am going up the night before and staying with some friends from NSW. Rare Pearl is a brilliant traveller so he’s easy to look after. All he does is sleep really,” he said.
Being such a strong finisher, many expect Rare Pearl to take the step up to longer distances. For now, though he’s continuing his versatility over the sprint and middle distance journeys.
“It’s actually a bit funny, I was getting him ready for a staying campaign; he was trialing really well and doing everything right. I just thought to myself that you only get one chance at these calibre of events like the Easter Egg so I thought it was best to pause the staying campaign and see how he ran. He is constantly improving and even though he needs a bit of luck, hopefully he can just do what he does best. If he is near the lead towards the end, he will get to the outside of the track and come home strong. It all just depends on how much distance there is to make up.”
Not underestimating the occasion, the White’s are looking forward to the big race on Saturday night.
“My wife and I know that this event is special and we are honestly so thankful that we are getting this opportunity. He is a fast dog and he has a lot of untapped potential so we know we have a chance. If he wins he gets his name with Paua To Burn as a past winner. We can’t wait to see what happens!”