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TAB Topgun: Armchair Guide

The world’s fastest greyhound Aston Rupee has a date with destiny in Saturday night’s star-studded Group 1 TAB Topgun (525m) at The Meadows.

The winner of 16 of his 29 starts, Aston Rupee (Box 2), which is trained by Glenn Rounds and raced by leviathan South Australian owner/breeder Ray Borda, is TAB’s $2.25 favourite as he chases a breakthrough G1 success.

Aston Rupee sensationally broke Sandown Park’s 515m track record on September 9 when clocking a staggering 28.79sec, after which he ran fourth in the G1 Adelaide Cup.

The Victorian superstar tuned up for his crack at the $150,000 to-the-winner Topgun with a scorching all-the-way win in a Melbourne Cup prelude last Thursday (October 28), clocking 28.89sec, the second fastest time recorded at Sandown, becoming the first sprinter to break ‘29’ seconds at the track twice.

Click HERE  for the latest TAB Topgun odds

It’s very nice to have the favourite for a race like the Topgun and with a nice box draw too,” said Glenn Rounds, who with late partner Judy Hayley contested back-to-back Topguns in 2000/01 with Classic Capri.

“The box won’t win it for you, but it helps!

“Coming off Adelaide and a week and a half off, I was stoked with his win at Sandown last week. He went super.

“He’s run a couple of fast times at The Meadows and there was no need to trial him. He’ll enjoy getting back there.


KEY TIMES


7.01pm First race – GRV Vic Bred final
8.38pm G1 TAB Topgun Stayers (Race 6)
9.17pm G1 TAB Topgun (Race 8)
10.41pm Last race (Race 12)

Topgun Stayers Trophy_crop

“It’s an outstanding field but I just feel we’re in the deep end with the right style of dog.

“We’re dealing with fractions of seconds. It’s ridiculous how we judge them, but that’s how it is. If you step good, you put yourself in the picture on the first turn, but if you miss it half a length, the dogs on the outside will cross you and cut you off.”

Victoria has dominated the Topgun in recent years but in a State of Origin scenario, the locals will face an imposing NSW contingent, striving to end a 21-year drought in the invitational feature, dating back to Placard in 2000.

HOW TO FOLLOW THE ACTION
– Comprehensive live telecast with Mark Ohlmus, Gareth Hall and Jason Adams on Sky Racing, watchdog.grv.org.au and via The Watchdog App.
– Behind the scenes Twitter coverage with ‘@TheMeadowsDogs‘ and ‘@WatchDogRacing’.
– Regular updates with Trent Langskaill on RSN Racing and Sport (927 AM).
– Coverage of the Topgun Sprint on 3AW (693 AM)

Leading the NSW quartet is $4.20 second elect Bandit Ned (Box 7), winner of his past seven, including the G1 Vic Peters Classic, while Zipping Kyrgios (Box 3) occupies the third line of betting at $7.50, with Wow (Box 5), winner of the G1 Temlee at The Meadows from the same draw in February, at $10 and Jungle Deuce (Box 8) at $18.

Underlining the incredible depth in the race, second reserve Koblenz, currently $7.50 in betting, would challenge Aston Rupee for favouritism if he secured an unlikely start.

Much-hyped Victorian distance prospect Zac’s Entity (Box 8) is $3.80 favourite for the Topgun Stayers (725m) at just his eighth start, ahead of Mepunga Ruby (Box 6) at $4.20 and NSW duo Stanley Road (Box 5) and Miss Ezmae (Box 1), both at $5.

Here’s a rundown of the contenders:

Group 1 TAB TOPGUN (525m),
Saturday 9.17pm – First prize: $150,000

1 DO IT
Trainer: Jeff Britton (Anakie VIC)
Breeding: January 2019 Fernando Bale x Alpha Demeter
Comment: Won 13 from 44. G1 Adelaide Cup winner two starts back, defeating Aston Rupee. Has strong Box 1 (4 from 7) and Meadows 525m (5 from 14) credentials and has each-way claims from the perfect draw. (PB – 29.69sec)

2 ASTON RUPEE
Trainer: Glenn Rounds (Devon Meadows VIC)
Breeding: April 2019 KC And All x Aston Miley
Comment: Won 16 from 29. Superstar, favourite to claim first G1 success. Two-time G3 Speed Star winner at The Meadows and Sandown Park and won 5 of past 6, including record-breaking 28.79sec Sandown performance. Inside draw ideal and the one to beat with a clear run. Watch the clock if he gets it! (PB – 29.47sec)

3 ZIPPING KYRGIOS
Trainer: John Finn (Cranebrook NSW)
Breeding: January 2019 Aussie Infrared x Zipping Lilly
Comment:
Won 21 from 40. Prodigious NSW talent that’s won his last 6 starts in his home state and trialled in a fast 29.84sec here on Monday. Likely to be outpaced early by some of these but will be motoring home. (PB – 29.84sec – Trial)

4 MR. FIX IT                         SCRATCHED
Trainer: Jeff Britton (Anakie VIC)
Breeding: January 2019 Fernando Bale x Alpha Demeter
Comment: Won 20 from 45. Absolutely loves The Meadows, winning 14 of his 22 starts over the 525m course and running third in the G1 Maturity in July. Last start runner-up to brother and kennelmate Do It in the G1 Adelaide Cup. Shapes as the likely leader and capable of pinching it if there’s any trouble behind him. (PB – 29.75sec)

5 WOW
Trainer: Danielle Matic (Canyonleigh NSW)
Breeding: May 2018 Fernando Bale x Miss All Class
Comment:
Won 26 from 43. NSW star striving to complete Meadows G1 invitational double after taking out the Temlee (from the same draw) in February, after which he ran a close 2nd in G1 Australian Cup heat. Comes into this off flying G3 Goulburn Cup win. Experience at The Meadows is a huge plus and can’t be treated lightly. (PB – 29.78sec)

6 TIGGERLONG TONK
Trainer: Correy Grenfell (Anakie VIC)
Breeding: February 2018 Dyna Double One x Tiggerlong Dot
Comment:
Won 42 from 92. Sensational competitor lining up in second Topgun after running 6th to Shima Shine last year. Been luckless with feature race draws throughout his career and that’s continued here but always gives his all and overlook him at your peril. (PB – 29.74sec)

7 BANDIT NED
Trainer: Jodie Lord (Gunning NSW)
Breeding: April 2019 Fernando Bale x Bombshell Bandit
Comment:
Won 15 from 18. Winning machine from leading NSW kennel that’s won his past 7 starts, including dominant last start win in G1 Vic Peters Classic. Unbeaten in six starts from Box 7 and trialled in a fast 29.74sec at The Meadows on Monday in preparation for this. Looms as a huge threat. (PB – 29.74sec – Trial)

8 JUNGLE DEUCE
Trainer: Ray Smith (Forbes NSW)
Breeding: April 2019 Barcia Bale x Serena Fly High
Comment: Won 17 from 29. Another NSW star with excellent strike rate. Had two starts at The Meadows, running 3rd in G1 Maturity heat in July and then clocking a BON 29.90sec two starts ago to boost Topgun credentials. An elite talent and doesn’t know how to run a bad race but the outside alley in this company makes his task a tough one. (PB – 29.90sec)

Reserves

9 LALA KIWI
Trainer: Andrea Dailly (Anakie VIC)
Breeding: May 2019 Aussie Infrared x Lala Shim
Comment:
Won 15 from 34. Talented sprinter with impressive career and track statistics. Will be meeting the absolute elite here if she gains a start and place claims would be best. (PB – 29.82sec)

10 KOBLENZ            SCRATCHED              
Trainer: David Geall (Lara VIC)
Breeding: March 2019 Fernando Bale x Up Hill Jill
Comment:
Won 23 from 36. Brilliant sprinter with exceptional early speed the key to his phenomenal winning record. Has run top two in six starts at The Meadows (three wins) and would be a huge chance if he secures an unlikely run. (PB – 29.78sec)

Group 1 TAB TOPGUN STAYERS (725m)
Saturday, 8.38pm – First prize $75,000
1 MISS EZMAE (Raymond Smith, Forbes NSW)
2 GYPSY WYONG (Andrea Dailly, Anakie VIC)
3 ZIPPING NISEKO (Jason Magri, Kemps Creek NSW)
4 HANK THE HUSTLER (Jeff Britton, Anakie VIC)
5 STANLEY ROAD (Mark Gatt, Thirlmere NSW)
6 MEPUNGA RUBY (Jeff Britton, Anakie VIC)
7 SUPER ESTRELLA (David Smith, Elderslie NSW)
8 ZAC’S ENTITY (Kelvyn Greenough, Pearcedale VIC)
Reserves
9 CASUS BELLI (Ned McDonald, Pearcedale VIC)
10 KENNY THE BRUTE (Kelvyn Greenough, Pearcedale VIC)

Click HERE  for the latest TAB Topgun Stayers odds

RECENT TOPGUN WINNERS

2011 Allen Harper (Graeme Bate, Lara VIC)
2012 David Bale (Graeme Bate, Lara VIC)
2013 Dyna Nalin (Paul Stuart, Nambeelup WA)
2014 Buckle Up Wes (Edward Medhurst, Mangalore TAS)
2015 Fernando Bale (Andrea Dailly, Anakie VIC)
2016 Dundee Osprey (Geoffrey Scott-Smith, Pakenham South VIC)
2017 Up Hill Jill (David Geall, Lara VIC)
2018 Poke The Bear (Seona Thompson, Pearcedale VIC)
2019 Get It Gizmo (Harry Manolitsis, Lysterfield South VIC)
2020 Shima Shine (Andrea Dailly, Anakie, VIC)

The TAB Topgun is the third leg of the Metro Festival of Racing. READ MORE

The content on this page was accurate at the time of publishing. If you notice any inaccurate content on this page or anywhere on the website, please report it here

About Gerard Guthrie - One of Australia's leading greyhound racing journalists since 2000 with the Greyhound Recorder and now with Greyhound Racing Victoria. Part-owner 2013 Group 1 Paws Of Thunder winner Sheikha. (The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of GRV)
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