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Maturity Classic Final: Armchair Guide

All eyes will be on superstar Victorian sprinter Wow She’s Fast in the $149,875 Group 1 KCR Pet Transport Maturity Classic Final (525m) at The Meadows on Saturday night.

Wow She’s Fast, trained by Jackie Greenough and husband Kel at Pearcedale, is a dominant $1.40 favourite with TAB for the $100,000 to-the-winner age-restricted sprint for both male and female youngsters.

Wow She’s Fast became Australian greyhound racing’s newest ‘millionaire’ after winning the female-only Group 1 Sapphire Crown at Sandown Park in May, while she also won the inaugural TAB Phoenix, also held at The Meadows, last December.

Click HERE  for TAB’s latest Maturity Classic Final market

Wow She’s Fast made a sensational return from a brief break in last Saturday night’s Maturity Classic heats, clocking a flying 29.56sec in an 11-length demolition, clearly the fastest of the eight run-offs.

She was then assured of favouritism for the final after drawing Box 1 for only the second time in her 18-start career.

KEY TIMES

6:27pm First race
7:49pm Race 5 (first leg of Quaddie)
8:05pm G3 KCR Fireball Final featuring Jarick Bale 📷 (Race 6)
8:52pm G1 KCR Maturity Classic Final (Race 8)
10:19pm Last race (Race 12)

Jarick Bale is all smiles after landing his first group 1.

Wow She’s Fast dominates Maturity Classic betting to such an extent that male rivals Plaintiff (Box 6), trained by two-time Maturity winner Jason Thompson, and Amron Boy (Box 7), prepared by Brooke Ennis, are the only other finalists at single figures, with both at $7.

HOW TO FOLLOW THE ACTION
– Comprehensive coverage on Sky Racing Active, watchdog.grv.org.au and via The Watchdog app hosted by Jason Adams and Corey Smith from 6pm.
– Trainer interviews and behind-the-scenes insights on Twitter with James van de Maat and Jason Bonnington via ‘@MelbourneGreys‘ and ‘@WatchDogRacing’.
– Regular updates with Trent Langskaill on RSN Racing and Sport (927 AM).

Saturday night’s meeting at The Meadows will also feature the $37,250 Group 3 KCR Pet Transport Fireball Final (730m) for the stayers.

Emerging talent Rohan Bale (Box 3), trained by former professional wrestler Daniel Gibbons, was the quickest of the three heat winners, running 42.85sec.

Rohan Bale is $2.50 favourite to give Gibbons his first Group victory, with his older half-brother, dual Group 1 winner Jarick Bale, trained by Mark Delbridge, the $3 second elect.

POINTS OF INTEREST

HISTORY BOOKS
The Maturity Classic was first run in 1970 at Olympic Park, with the inaugural winner, Phantom’s Heir, collecting $1250. Notable winners of the race include Temlee (1974), New Tears (1987), Brett Lee (2001), El Grand Senor (2010), Barcia Bale (2012), Fernando Bale (2015) and Simon Told Helen (2020).

GIRL POWER
Hot favourite Wow She’s Fast and Kelsey Bale are the only two female finalists and are striving to become the third winner from the fairer sex in the last five years, following Dyna Patty (2018) and Qwara Bale (2021), both of which were trained by Andrea Dailly. While their recent record in the race is strong, only seven females have won the Maturity Classic.

FAVOURITE WAY
If Wow She’s Fast is successful, she will become the 25th favourite to win the Maturity Classic since its inception and 12th favourite since the immortal Brett Lee was victorious in 2001. Brett Lee, which started $1.20, is the shortest priced winner of the race.

ON THE CLOCK
Since the race was first held at The Meadows in 1999, Fernando Bale holds the race record at 29.50sec, with Wow She’s Fast less than one length outside his benchmark time in her runaway heat victory. Fernando Bale has also sired two Maturity Classic winners in Dyna Patty and Sennachie, but he doesn’t have a finalist this year.

MULTIPLE WINNERS
‘Team Dailly’ is taking aim at their fourth Maturity Classic title in the past eight years with Dusty Bourbski, having won the race with the great Fernando Bale in 2015, as well as Dyna Patty and Qwara Bale. Champion trainer Jason Thompson is searching for a third Maturity Classic victory with Plaintiff, having been successful with Run’s House (2007) and Aston Trivett (2009).

FIRST TIMERS
Half the field will be contesting their first Group event – Kelsey Bale, Lektra Rhino, Who Told Shorty and He’s No Slouch, the latter being a litter brother to favourite Wow She’s Fast.

Group 1 MATURITY CLASSIC FINAL (525m)
The Meadows Race 8, Saturday 8:52pm
Total prizemoney $149,875 (First prize $100,000)
1 WOW SHE’S FAST (Jackie Greenough, Pearcedale VIC)
2 LEKTRA RHINO (Philip Lenehan, Toolong VIC)
3 HE’S NO SLOUCH (Peter Craig, Langwarrin VIC)
4 WHO TOLD SHORTY (Brendan Pursell, Lara VIC)
5 DUSTY BOURBSKI (Tom Dailly, Anakie VIC)
6 PLAINTIFF (Jason Thompson, Pearcedale VIC)
7 AMRON BOY (Brooke Ennis, Lara VIC) 📷
8 KELSEY BALE (Daniel Gibbons, Avalon VIC)
Reserves
9
FRANCIS BENALI   SCRATCHED
10 KYSAIAH   SCRATCHED

Amron Boy 20220716

MATURITY CLASSIC HEAT WINNERS
Saturday 16 July
(fastest to slowest)

29.56sec Wow She’s Fast 📷
29.75sec Amron Boy
29.85sec Plaintiff
29.94sec Kelsey Bale
30.01sec Who Told Shorty
30.16sec Lektra Rhino
30.25sec He’s No Slouch
30.37sec Dusty Bourbski

Wow She's Fast is all smiles after winning the Bill Collins Speed Star

RECENT MATURITY CLASSIC WINNERS

2012 Barcia Bale (Graeme Bate, Lara VIC)
2013 Marcus Joe (Barry Moloney, Marcus Hill VIC)
2014 Mepunga Hayley (Jeff Britton, Anakie VIC)
2015 Fernando Bale (Andrea Dailly, Anakie VIC)
2016 Kilty Express (Ray Drew, Dennington VIC)
2017 Mepunga Blazer (Jeff Britton, Anakie VIC)
2018 Dyna Patty (Andrea Dailly, Anakie VIC)
2019 Sennachie (Steve White, Buln Buln East VIC)
2020 Simon Told Helen (David Burnett, Little River VIC)
2021 Qwara Bale (Andrea Dailly, Anakie VIC) 📷

Qwara Bale 20210724

Group 3 FIREBALL FINAL (730m)
The Meadows Race 6, Saturday 8:05pm
Total prizemoney $37,250 (First prize $25,000)
1 GOLDEN RATIO (Andrew Broadley, Aspendale VIC)
2 PLAY NICE (Tim Britton, Lara VIC)
3 ROHAN BALE (Daniel Gibbons, Avalon VIC) 📷
4 VICTA HAYDN (Tony Rasmussen, Gifford Hill SA)
5 GOLDEN QUEST (Michelle Mallia, Avalon VIC)
6 DRAKO BALE (Andrea Dailly, Anakie VIC)
7 ASTON SAMBA (Ben Magri, Avalon VIC)
8 JARICK BALE (Mark Delbridge, Balliang VIC)
Reserves
9
ARIARNE BALE   SCRATCHED
10 BOOM LATERAL   SCRATCHED

Rohan Bale 20220716

Click HERE  for TAB’s latest Fireball Final market

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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