At least two pairs of Irish eyes will be smiling if record-breaking Western Australian raider Quick Jagger wins Tuesday night’s Group 1 TRFM Sale Cup (650m).
Quick Jagger is owned by two Perth-based Irishmen, Declan Edmonds and Eamonn Fitzpatrick, and friend Geoff Chatfield, and the luck of the Irish has certainly been following the son of 2013 Sale Cup hero Dyna Nalin throughout his 26-start career.
“Quick Jagger is my first ever greyhound,” explained Declan Edmonds, who’s lived in Australia for the last decade.
“I decided I was sick of losing my money on other peoples’ greyhounds, so I might as well lose it on my own dog!
“But Quick Jagger has turned out to be a decent dog. It must be the luck of the Irish or beginner’s luck. I don’t think I’ll ever get another one as good.
“I worked in the mines up north with Glen Connell, who owned a dog called Pipeline Rumour, which raced in Victoria. We used to follow Glen’s dog and I also loved watching Fernando Bale at the time and decided I wanted to get involved in this.
“Jim Duffy, who is good friends with Chris Halse and Linda Britton, heard me talking about getting a dog at the pub one night. So we went out one Sunday morning and I got Chris (Halse) drunk and asked him which pup was the best. He gave away all his secrets!
“The other two owners are Eamonn (Fitzpatrick), who’s a rough-neck brickie like me, and Geoff (Chatfield), who’s retired now. There’s a bit of an age difference with Geoff, but we share common interests; gambling and drinking!”
Quick Jagger started his career in auspicious fashion, incredibly breaking the Cannington 520m track record on three occasions in his first 11 starts, still holding the course benchmark at 29.29sec.
Quick Jagger contested the Melbourne Cup heats, running third to Bewildering, en route to last Sunday’s Sale Cup run-offs, where he started $2.10 favourite and fought on gamely to stave off Van Ann in 37.37sec, just .03 outside Chasin’ Crackers’ qualifying standard.
“When I got into this I didn’t realise what a Group 1 was,” Declan laughed.
“I was always ringing Chris and Linda, asking questions a child would ask. I pictured their eyes turning up whenever I rang, wondering ‘what does he want now’, but they’ve been very patient with me.
“Winning a Group 1 heat was fantastic and it’s just unbelievable to be in the final. All year I’ve been watching Fanta Bale and now all of a sudden we’re up against her. Whether or not Quick Jagger can beat her I’m not sure. I hope he doesn’t get star struck!”
Chris Halse and Linda Britton know what is required to reign supreme at Sale, having sent Star Recall east to Linda’s brother Jeff for her triumphant 2014 Cup campaign.
“We get on really well with Chris and Linda,” Declan offered.
“I’ve made so many new friends through them; it’s like being part of a big family.
“Quick Jagger is 30 months old now, so he should be at his peak, but I’m not sure what Chris and Linda have planned after Sale. I leave all that to them. I wouldn’t want them telling me how to build a wall!”
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