Lara trainer Darby Fisher is hoping the aptly named Sizzlin’ Sanchez sets the track alight at Sandown today.
“He’s well boxed in the ‘check’, it will suit him down to the ground,” Fisher said. “He’s a keen chaser and if he gets to the rail it will take a good one to run him down.”
Fisher said Sizzlin’ Sanchez – a litter brother of Group 1 Rookie Rebel winner Perfect Marshall – had been outclassed at his past few starts but was back in his own grade today.
Sizzlin’ Sanchez had terrible box manners earlier in his career, so Fisher enlisted the help of his brood matron Angel Of Glory to correct his errant ways.
“She taught him how to come out properly,” Fisher said. “I’d put her on the outside of the box and let her go while pulling the lever to let ‘Sanchez’ out.”
It achieved the desired result as Sizzlin’ Sanchez has now raced on 46 occasions for eight wins, eight seconds and four thirds.
Fisher, who has been training greyhounds intermittently for 40 years, was introduced to the sport while working at Jackson’s Meatworks in North Geelong.
“My local watering hole at the time was the Norlane Hotel and that’s where I first met Eric McKee,” Fisher said. “He wanted someone to assist him with his dogs and once I finished my shift at the meatworks I’d go down to his property.”
Fisher said McKee, who ran a scaffolding business, owned champion stayer Ibrox. He also owned and trained another star, Titus Dream.
A fanatical Geelong supporter, Fisher’s favourite Cats’ players are 1960s stars “Polly” Farmer and Billy Goggin, and current captain Joel Selwood.
“I’ve followed the Cats since I was knee-high to a grasshopper, and I actually worked with Billy (Goggin) who was a boner at the meatworks,” Fisher said. “I also beat him over 100 yards in our annual footrace.”
Fisher added that, along with Sizzlin’ Sanchez, the best greyhounds he’s been associated with include Snappers Mate and his dam Splendid Return, Ok Jake and Fab Star.
Sizzlin’ Sanchez lines up in Race 11 Box 2 at 5.49pm.