Anyone who has met Anthony Azzopardi knows being near speechless isn’t really… Anthony.
When I called this morning to talk about his four contenders in Saturday night’s Summer Sizzle heats at Warrnambool (worth a sneaky $25,000 to-the-winner if you don’t mind), he struggled to find words to describe how fast one of his contenders are.
Can you take guess?
Heat one Anthony has My Bro Kade and litter brother Double Tax and in heat two he has Whisky Riot and Aston Giesha.
Now you will be forgiven for guessing Whisky Riot. Four starts for three wins, including a victory in the Sale Rising Star on Sale Cup night. Best of the night time too – taking into account the likes of Big Flood, Fully Loaded, Dyna Hunter and Jesaulenko all ran over the same distance (440m) that night, I would say pretty solid effort.
“Whisky Riot is my best chance in the heats, but I do think Crackerjack Skip is going to be hard to beat in the heats,” Azzopardi admitted.
“He is a speedy dog and I entered him thinking he was good enough to win the series.”
Rated by Azzopardi as the best in the Fernando Bale x Ready To Riot litter he does admit the litter is taking a little longer than expected to mature into seasoned race dogs but time is key.
If you guessed Aston Geisha, please give yourself a big pat on the back as you are narrowing down your chances to a correct guess.
Aston Geisha finds herself up against kennel mate Whisky Riot in the second heat of the Summer Sizzle jumping from box six with a vacant box on her inside.
“Aston Geisha isn’t as quick as Whiskey Riot but she is no push over,” Azzopardi explained.
The daughter of Kinloch Brae and Secret Spell won her first five career starts before she tasted defeated in the Group 2 Great Chase final at The Meadows in October.
If you guessed Double Tax you are almost correct because I have strung you along to tell you that is it My Bro Kade who left Azzopardi near speechless about his abilities.
My Bro Kade is a winner of eight races from 24 starts and has been in Azzopardi’s care since November where he is yet to run unplaced. One of theses victories included a win in the Ballarat Cup Consolation.
It was at this point I couldn’t really take notes, but I did manage to capture this…
“He. Is. A. Freak. Of. An. Animal.”
I have to admit, I made that sound a little more dramatic than how Azzopardi said it. It was more along the lines of… “He is a freak of an animal.”
As freaky as this 34 kilo greyhound is, bad habits have prevented him from winning races and running times that he should be.
“Anything could happen with a clear run with this dog and I know a lot of people say this,” Azzopardi said.
“The times he runs at his first looks at new tracks is crazy, but he is a clumsy dog and slow early which does him no favours in races.”
My Bro Kade is jumping from box four on Saturday night with a vacant box on his outside. While his litter brother Double Tax has drawn box six.
The Watchdog tipping service suggest that the Jeff Britton trained He’s For Me is the greyhound to beat in the 450 metre, age restricted event.
“Anthony, you have some pretty nice young pups coming through at the moment,” I said.
“Oh yes, I have a very exciting kennel at the moment,” Anthony responded.
WATCH THIS SPACE, because I know I will be.
Also, I should have mentioned sooner – there is no prize for the correct guess, but I do hope you had fun!