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Azzopardi’s Sapphire quest

Anthony Azzopardi has a trial session at Murray Bridge to thank for one of his Group 1 Sapphire Crown contenders – Spring Fair.

Spring Fair is owned and bred by the Board Racing Syndicate managed by her former trainer Greg Board.

And in an historical twist of events, Greg sold Anthony his first good greyhound – Spring Money Shot, which went on to be the inspiration for the name of Anthony’s kennels – Money Shot Lodge.

“I was trialling at Murray Bridge and Greg came up and asked if I would take her because there weren’t many races for her in South Australia,” Azzopardi said.

“She is the first dog I have trained for Greg and I am very proud to have made the final with Spring Fair.”

“It was a really good run in her heat, and it earnt her a lot of merit.”

WATCH: Spring Fair win her Sapphire Crown heat from box five.

Despite an impressive all the way win in her Sapphire Crown heat and drawing box three in tonight’s final, Spring Fair is a $7.50 shot to claim Group 1 glory.

“Black Opium has class and if she jumps in front it is all over,” Azzopardi said.

Azzopardi also brings Nangar Diva into the Group 1 Sapphire Crown from box seven after an eye-catching second place in her heat.

“When she is fully fit, I have no doubt she is going to run some time at Sandown, but heading into the Sapphire final I think she is going to strip fitter for her heat run because she hadn’t been over the 500 (metres) for months.”

“Box seven is going to be hard, especially because she is a bit hit or miss at the start.”

The Group 1 Sapphire Crown is race six on tonight’s card and will jump at 7.43pm.

Azzopardi also has a strong hand into the Group 1 Harrison-Dawson heats with Million Dollar Chase winner Good Odds Harada having his first start for the kennel in the opening heat.

“I am really excited to have this dog. He trialled super last week, and I am hoping he is able to time the lids properly to get out in front because he is a run short.”

Australian Cup winner Fernando’s Riot is in the second Harrison Dawson heat jumping at 8.04pm.

“It’s going to be hard to beat Tiggerlong Tonk but I am happy with the box and he is going really well.”

Short Pork concludes Azzopardi’s runners in the feature events at Sandown tonight in the third and final Harrison-Dawson heat.

“Short Pork is going good enough to make the final. He is going to have to contend with a bad box draw but one thing I can tell you, he keeps moving forward and never moves back.”

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Molly Haines
About Molly Haines - Communication Assistant at Greyhound Racing Victoria with 16 years of experience working with greyhounds in all capacities.
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