Eight incredible heats of the Group 1 TAB Melbourne Cup (515m) will be held at Sandown Park on Friday night, as Victorian greyhound racing’s inaugural Metro Festival of Racing moves into its final leg.
The eight heat winners will earn their way into the $630,000 TAB Melbourne Cup final on Friday night 27 November, which boasts a first prize of $435,000, making it the richest greyhound race in Victoria.
The TAB Melbourne Cup is widely considered as the world’s greatest greyhound race, with heats night widely regarded by greyhound punters as the best betting night of the year as it attracts the premier greyhounds from all over Australia.
Three heats of the Bold Trease (715m) will also be run on Friday night, equating to 11 Group 1 heats on the 12 race card, with Race 1 scheduled at 6.49pm.
Here’s a list of some of the drawcards competing on Friday night’s bumper program:
Tornado Tears (Race 1, Box 1, 6.49pm – Bold Trease Heat 1)
Six-time Group 1 winner who became just the seventh Australian greyhound to surpass $1 million in prize money when taking out the recent G1 TAB Topgun Stayers.
Houdini Boy (Race 2, Box 5, 7.13pm – Bold Trease Heat 2)
Fascinating greyhound who weaves his way through traffic as if he has a jockey on his back. Returned from a spell by running two lengths off Sandown’s 595m track record last Sunday. The start prior he made his staying debut, flashing home to be narrowly beaten by Tornado Tears in the G3 Top Cat Video Cup (725m) at The Meadows.
Shima Shine (Race 3, Box 3, 7.38pm – TAB Melbourne Cup Heat 1)
First reserve in last year’s TAB Melbourne Cup Final, the dual track record holder finally broke his group race duck with a win in the G1 TAB Topgun earlier this month.
Handsome Prince (Race 5, Box 2, 8.15pm – TAB Melbourne Cup Heat 3)
Bred in Tasmania, the now NSW greyhound won the Million Dollar Chase in Sydney in October. Recently trialled at Sandown and showed exceptional track sense.
Tiggerlong Tonk (Race 6, Box 4, 8.39pm – TAB Melbourne Cup Heat 4)
Made a statement with a sensational win in the four-dog Group 3 Shootout (515m) at Sandown Park last week eclipsing the likes of Shima Shine, Christo Bale and Hard Style Rico. Became the longest priced winner of the race at $6.50 and ran a race record 29.03sec in what was a breathtaking performance.
Simon Told Helen (Race 7, Box 4, 8.57pm). TAB Melbourne Cup Heat 5.
Reigning Australian Greyhound of the Year and four-time Group 1 winner who is arguably the greyhound to beat in this series.
Tommy Shelby (Race 8, Box 3, 9.17pm). TAB Melbourne Cup Heat 6.
WA superstar named after a lead character in the popular Netflix series, Peaky Blinders. His owners are donating five per cent of any prize money he earns during the month of November (ie. 10 per cent of the owners share) to Movember, which creates awareness about men’s health issues. His clash with Gippsland pin-up dog Catch The Thief should be a ripper.
Hard Style Rico (Race 9, Box 8, 9.40pm). TAB Melbourne Cup Heat 7.
Shepparton Cup winner, Shepparton track record holder and claimed the G3 RSN Silver Bullet at The Meadows on the opening night of the Metro Festival of Racing on 2 November in a scintillating 29.46sec. Is unbeaten in three starts from Box 8.
How to follow Friday night’s TAB Melbourne Cup heats:
– Watch every race LIVE and FREE on The Watchdog app or at watchdog.grv.org.au.
– Comprehensive Twitter coverage with @SandownDogs and @WatchdogRacing from 5.30pm.
– Sky Racing, RSN Racing and Sport (927 AM) & SEN Track’s ‘The Lids Fly’ (1593 AM).
The inaugural Metro Festival of Racing incorporates 10 group races run across five nights of racing at The Meadows and Sandown Park during November, with almost $2 million in prize money being distributed.
2020 Metro Festival of Racing (winners so far)
G1 Hume Cup, The Meadows: LAST HURRAH, Brett Nye (Little River)
G3 RSN Silver Bullet, The Meadows: HARD STYLE RICO, Luckie Karabitsakos (Pearcedale)
G1 TAB Topgun, The Meadows: SHIMA SHINE, Andrea Dailly (Anakie)
G1 TAB Topgun Stayers, The Meadows: TORNADO TEARS, Robert Britton (Lara)
G3 Shootout, Sandown Park: TIGGERLONG TONK, Correy Grenfell (Mount Wallace)
WATCH: Whiskey Riot (3) scores a nail-biting win in the 2019 TAB Melbourne Cup over Western Envoy (5).
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