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‘Deadly’ precision!

Multiple Group 1-winning trainer Anthony Azzopardi is launching a pre-emptive strike in the $37,250 Group 3 Warragul St Leger final (460m) – Race 8, 9.16pm – on Friday night.

Based at Rowsley, Azzopardi has a two-pronged challenge courtesy of Deadly Class (Box 6) and Salad Dodger (Box 8). Both are $9 and $21 respectively on TAB’s fixed odds market.

Deadly Class was the fastest of four heat winners last week, clocking a slick 25.57sec, while Salad Dodger posted 25.85sec.

But form experts have assessed the $25,000 to-the-winner final as a ‘match race’ between the other two heat winners – Mr. Audacious (Box 5) and Plaintiff (Box 3).

Race favourite Mr. Audacious semaphored 25.66sec, while Plaintiff registered 25.70sec. Both are $2.50 and $3 for the final.

“I also turned him out because he was very green… I let him
grow up.”

But Azzopardi, albeit highly respectful of Mr. Audacious’ and Plaintiff’s talents, rates the betting market a “little bit wrong”.

“I’d put my money up and see if they can beat him… I’ve got no doubt he’s as quick as them.

“I’d like to see the three of them go to the first corner together untouched.”

Supporting Azzopardi’s thoughts is the fact Deadly Class, a winner of four from seven, registered a best-of-day 29.88sec defeating Rapaki Rocks by eight lengths on race debut at The Meadows on February 9.

Rapaki Rocks has since gone on to claim the G1 Harrison-Dawson and finished third to ‘wonder woman’ Wow She’s Fast in the G3 Speed Star.

Unfortunately, Deadly Class – which finished fifth to Plaintiff in the GRV Vic Bred Maiden on Australian Cup night – hurt his hamstring and a toe in late March. But it’s proved a blessing in disguise.

“I also turned him out because he was very green… I let him grow up,” Azzopardi said.

“That’s only his second look there (Warragul); he’s not a local.

“I think he’s got a big future. He just has to go on with the job.”

But Azzopardi concedes box six is a “little bit of a let-down”. “But if he begins and runs a 5.42sec split again, it may not be such a problem.”

Click HERE  for TAB’s latest Warragul St Leger market

Deadly Class resumed in mid-July with an impressive 25.51sec (Best) win, scoring by 8.5L, over 460m at Geelong prior to his St Leger heat victory.

Azzopardi is not as buoyant about Salad Dodger’s chances but says the winner of six from 16 is a “real hard chaser and hard to get past when in front”.

“But he’s not in this league… He’s got the ability to compete with them but needed to be boxed right.

“He’ll need everything to go his own way… I would have preferred the ‘red’ (Box 1).”

Pawnote: Other highlights on the program will include titanic tussles between Dynamic Prince vs On The Bit in the $7335 Simon Benson Memorial final (460m) – Race 6, 8.35pm – and Boom Lateral vs Shanlyn Hunter in the $9170 President’s Cup (680m) – Race 5, 8.15pm.

WATCH: DEADLY CLASS (B4) establishes the heats time standard – 25.57sec – last Friday.

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 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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