Eight of Australia’s best greyhounds will line up for the world’s richest and most prestigious greyhound race, the $600,000 TAB Melbourne Cup which will be held at Sandown Park on Friday night.
And the all-Victorian field already has many experts claiming it is the best ever to assemble for a Melbourne Cup.
Aston Dee Bee has earned TAB favouritism after drawing box 1 and winning his heat in comprehensive fashion.
Kennel mate Bewildering earned his spot in the final with his stunning finish in his heat. Widely regarded as the fastest greyhound in the country, the two-time Speed Star winner will jump from box 6 which, as a general rule, has not proven lucky for Mellbourne Cup starters in the past.
More pace will come from exciting youngster Raw Ability and consistent speedster Up Hill Jill, who surprised with an all-the-way victory in the 2017 Group 1 Sky Racing Topgun Group 1, her first and well-overdue Group 1 victory.
Striker Light, Kouta Mayhem, Aston Miley and Chasin’ Crackers will round out the field of speedstars in the final.
Greyhound Racing Victoira (GRV) CEO Alan Clayton said it was an outstanding field for the Melbourne Cup which was the pinnacle of greyhound racing around the world.
“The quality of dogs we have in Victoria is second-to-none,” Mr Clayton said.
“The fact that every dog in this field is Victorian-trained reflects the standard and expertise of the trainers and breeders in this state, and the dedication of our greyhound owners.”.
Victorian greyhound racing is in a strong position, having recently increased the annual prizemoney pool available in Victoria to $46 million, as well as support for sustainable breeding.
“The industry as a whole has really stepped up its focus on the welfare of greyhounds which are now being re-homed in record numbers in Victoria,” Mr Clayton said.
“There had never been a better time to be part of greyhound racing in Victoria.”