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Flying ‘Hornet’

Have you heard the story about the once retired ‘couch potato’ who is still winning races? No?

Well, read on…

Black Hornet doesn’t ‘own’ a racing kennel – his lodging is a sofa under a pergola at the Anakie property his trainer Angela Langton runs with partner Jeff Britton.

In fact, he shares the area and a one-acre free galloping paddock with four other pet greyhounds – including former racetrack stars Tarks Nemesis (pictured with Black Hornet) and Yowyeh.

“Albert”, as he is affectionately known, was retired after finishing sixth to champion Orson Allen in a heat of the G1 Harrison-Dawson (515m) at Sandown on May 16 last year.

Unfortunately, he sustained a chip behind a stopper bone that was inoperable.
So, it was decided to retire the extremely promising sprinter.

But time is a great healer and eventually Langton and Britton noticed Black Hornet wasn’t pulling up sore after exercising.

“He was still looking magnificent, so we decided to put him up our straight track and things progressed from there,” Angela said. “I always thought Jeff was joking about winning the Healesville Cup with him, but hopefully it may be ‘many a true word spoken in jest’.”

And, in nothing short of an amazing comeback, Black Hornet has returned from a 13-month hiatus to win twice in three starts – the latest being a 27.26sec best-of-day win over 485m at Horsham.

WATCH: Comeback ‘couch potato’ Black Hornet (4) flies home to defeat Spring Fair (7) in a best-of-day 27.26sec at Horsham on Tuesday.

The superbly bred May ’17 Barcia Bale x Mepunga Mia dog notched his eighth win – including two at both Sandown and The Meadows – from 19 starts.

“Everyone loves Albert… We had him on the list for GAP but in the end, we didn’t have the heart to let him go,” Angela said. “He still lives a life of luxury, including two ham and cheese rolls for breakfast every morning from Bakers Delight.”

Angela added that Black Hornet “thinks he’s human”. “He’s really loving and is a real character… When I’m hanging out the washing, he grabs the clothes out of the basket and thinks he’s helping.”

What’s that about leading a dog’s life? Certainly not for pampered pooch, Albert!

Pawnote: Black Hornet is a member of a highly successful litter including Mepunga Wonder, Circle Of Dreams, Steinbrenner and Spearhead.

Peter Quilty
About Peter Quilty - Has more than three decades of experience as assistant editor of Victorian Greyhound Weekly. He was editor of GRV monthly magazine The Adviser (2001-09) and owner/publisher of Australian Greyhound Monthly. He also served on the selection panel for the inaugural GRV ‘Hall of Fame’ inductees and for several years was an adjudicator on the Victorian GOTY. He’s also published greyhound racing yearbooks and wrote the ‘Bold Trease’ video script.
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