Former Group 1 star Proven Impala has succumbed to bone cancer, aged 10.
The versatile greyhound enjoyed a stellar career on the racetrack before retiring on the couch of her trainer, Joe Borg.
“She was a family pet and our champion, we miss her so much,” an emotional Borg said. “I’m very sad to have lost her, and I can’t thank owner Nicholas Darragh enough for allowing me to keep her after she retired.”
And Borg added there was someone else that’s missing “Chevy”.
“Her best mate, Come On Luann who turned 11 last month, is fretting for her,” Borg said. “They were inseparable and even slept together.”
Come On Luann is the grand-dam of Sweet Impala, also trained by Borg, who won in a best-of-day 29.41sec at Sandown last Sunday.
Borg, who has been training greyhounds for just over 30 years, said he was very fortunate to train such an exceptional greyhound that could sprint and stay.
“She won sprint, middle distance and staying races at both Victorian metropolitan tracks,” Borg said.
A six-time G1 finalist, Proven Impala (Oct ’09 Velocette x Thanks Blue) won the 2013 G1 Rookie Rebel (600m) at The Meadows, G2 McKenna Memorial (595m) at Sandown, and 2013 G3 Chairman’s Cup (720m) at Wentworth Park. In all, she contested 10 group race finals.
Proven Impala won 31 races (with 11 seconds and 10 thirds) from 82 starts and amassed $362,895 in stakes.
“She was extremely sedate, but would switch on at the track and just wanted to race,” Borg said. “I think she also was the 2013 GOBIS Greyhound of the Year, winning around $44,000 in GOBIS prizemoney.
Bred by incumbent Shepparton GRC manager Carl McGrath, Proven Impala only whelped two litters – sired by Where’s Pedro and Cosmic Rumble.
The best of her progeny is Black Impala (Mar ’15 Cosmic Rumble), prepared by Borg’s father George, who won at Shepparton last Saturday night.
A five-time G1 finalist, Black Impala won the 2018 G1 Hume Cup (600m) at The Meadows and finished runner-up to Barcali in the 2018 G1 Bold Trease (715m) at Sandown.
He’s raced on 69 occasions for 22 wins (with 14 seconds and seven thirds) and has earned $202,680 in prizemoney.
The ‘Impala’ was Chevrolet’s popular US flagship passenger car and now has an athletic, sophisticated design. (It was named after the graceful African antelope.) Hence Proven Impala’s kennel name, “Chevy”. Borg donated a framed photo of Proven Impala winning the 2013 G1 Rookie Rebel to the Ballarat GRC which still hangs proudly in the club’s lounge.
WATCH: Proven Impala (2) wins the 2013 Group 1 Rookie Rebel at The Meadows.