Last-start Geelong Gold Cup winner Aston Kimetto is the $2.15 TAB favourite to win Thursday night’s four-dog Shootout (515m) at Sandown Park, which boasts a $25,000 winner-take-all prize.
Jason Thompson, husband of Aston Kimetto’s trainer Seona Thompson, has been quoted as saying that Aston Kimetto is capable of running 29 seconds flat at Sandown, and if he does that he will almost certainly win. The issue for Aston Kimetto is that he may have to come from last to win.
Meanwhile, determined Queenslander Maurice Minor could surprise.
“Time-wise there isn’t a lot between the four dogs,” said Maurice Minor’s trainer, Tom Tzouvelis.
“I’m expecting She’s Gifted to lead, and I’m hoping Maurice Minor can sit behind her in second position, in front of Orson Allen.”
“Aston Kimetto is the sweeper of the field, and he will be powering home at the finish.”
Should Maurice Minor lead at any stage, Tzouvelis will be confident of a maiden group win.
“Maurice Minor has never been run down before when leading, so if he does find the lead I’d be surprised if they catch him,” he said.
Maurice Minor has had 60 starts for 20 wins and $107,250 in prize money, having raced in heats and finals of feature events in Victoria, NSW, South Australia, Tasmania, the Northern Territory and his home state of Queensland.
“He is probably the most travelled greyhound in Australia right now,” Tzouvelis said. “The only state I haven’t raced him in yet is WA. I’ve always believed that if you’ve got a greyhound good enough you should travel with them, provided you think they can be competitive, because it can be expensive.”
“They also need the right temperament to travel regularly. Maurice Minor has one of the best temperaments I have ever seen in a greyhound. He travels very well and he just loves to race.”
GROUP 3 SHOOTOUT, 8.55PM
- Box 1. Maurice Minor, QLD ($4.40)
- Box 3. Orson Allen, VIC ($3.10)
- Box 5. Aston Kimetto, VIC ($2.10)
- Box 7. She’s Gifted, VIC ($6.00)
WATCH: Maurice Minor (7) wins at Sandown Park last Thursday night in 29.32sec.