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Blooming stayer defying trainer’s doubts

She Will Bloom claimed the great Tornado Tears’ scalp when emphatically opening her Group race account at The Meadows last weekend; however trainer Brendan Pursell admits that he isn’t convinced she’s a genuine stayer.

She Will Bloom was a runaway winner of the Group 3 Top Cat Video Cup (725m) last Saturday, cracking the $100,000 prize money barrier in the process, with odds-on favourite Tornado Tears winding up a well-beaten fifth.

“I wouldn’t say she’s a true stayer,” Pursell told RSN Central host Gareth Hall.

“She’s more good speed, gets out in front and hopefully she can hold them off.

“Luckily enough for her she’s been able to stay; she’s a little bit slow over the 500 early.”

Having just turned two-and-a-half years old, She Will Bloom is entering the prime of her career.

She has now won 14 races (35 starts), however her transition to staying ranks took a little bit of perseverance.

In February this year, She Will Bloom successfully stepped up to middle distance ranks, winning four in a row at Sandown (595m) and The Meadows (600m).

She then made her staying debut over 715m at Sandown, leading most of the way before finishing a distance sixth. Fast forward six months and she has now won three races at 715m and beyond.

“She seems to be getting stronger now and the tracks are getting a bit firmer so hopefully the warm weather will keep up and keep the tracks firmer.

When she’s on top of the ground she seems to like that and go a little bit better,” Pursell said.

“The true stayers tell you pretty early that they’re going to stay and after a couple of runs they’re off and going.

“A dog like Tornado Tears, he was always going to stay, while with a dog like She Will Bloom you’re just hoping she might stay and she’s getting there now.”

Sydney is the next frontier, with the improving She Will Bloom heading to Wentworth Park this Saturday night for a preparatory 720m hit-out ahead of the following weekend’s heats of the $100,000 to-the-winner Group 3 Sydney Cup.

She Will Bloom’s feature race breakthrough at double figure odds in last weekend’s Top Cat Video Cup was even sweeter for Pursell who celebrated a rare Group quinella with kennelmate Annie Lava, a $24.70 outsider, finishing second.

“Luckily enough for her she’s been able to stay; she’s a little bit slow over the 500 early.”

She Will Bloom’s runaway victory may have eased Pursell’s lingering doubts about the daughter of Turanaza Bale and Kula Girl’s stamina and he has his sights set on some big distance targets, including the Group 1 Bold Trease during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

“I wouldn’t say I was confident but I thought I had two dogs in the race that if Tornado Tears got into trouble they were a chance,” Pursell said.

“Tornado Tears is a second above most of the stayers at the moment if he gets a clear run and you could throw a blanket over the rest of them.

“We’ll just keep chasing the Group races now. After they win a few in Victoria at metropolitan tracks it’s hard to get a run – they don’t have many free-for-alls for those sorts of dogs.”

Pursell is also taking Sweet As Emm, winner of her last three starts at Geelong (29.64s) and Sandown (29.36s and 29.35s) to Sydney on Saturday to contest the City heats of the TAB Million Dollar Chase.

The daughter of My Bro Fabio and Group 1 winner Born Ali has trialled impressively at Wentworth Park and will exit box three in the fourth heat, where she shares TAB favouritism with local Aston Duke at $2.80.

WATCH: She Will Bloom (5) wins the Topcat Video Cup last Saturday night at The Meadows.

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Gerard Guthrie
About Gerard Guthrie - One of Australia's leading greyhound racing journalists since 2000 with the Greyhound Recorder and now with Greyhound Racing Victoria. Part-owner 2013 Group 1 Paws Of Thunder winner Sheikha. (The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of GRV)
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