• Wednesday, 12 Jul, 2023,
  • by Gerard Guthrie

Return ‘Journey’ above and ‘Beyond’

Potential star Journey Beyond, brilliant winner of eight of his nine starts, will be striving to maintain his unblemished record since returning from a lengthy break at Sandown Park on Thursday night.

After seven months on the sidelines, Journey Beyond, trained by 21-year-old Group 1 winner Kayla Cottrell, has resumed with a bang, reeling off five consecutive wins.

The Queensland-bred son of Keybow and Bogie Princess made his first appearance in ‘town’ on Sunday afternoon, where he stifled betting on a Grade 5 heat at $1.10, recording a dominant 29.48sec victory.

Remarkably, it was the eighth time in his nine-start career Journey Beyond has started odds-on, with the only exception when he was $2 favourite in his only defeat to date, when fourth at Warragul last October prior to his spell.

“I do have a very big opinion of the dog; he’s a nice young dog and he hasn’t put it all together yet,” said Cottrell.

“The dog just keeps stepping up whenever I’ve asked him to.”

“He had a minor hiccup with an injury, so I gave him all the time he needed and just eased him back into racing.

“He hasn’t looked back since I brought him back. The dog just keeps stepping up whenever I’ve asked him to.

“His recent form has been absolutely super.”

Cottrell had no distance concerns about Journey Beyond prior to his dominant Sandown debut; however she says the start will be crucial in Thursday’s $7300 to-the-winner final (race 3, 6.41pm), with the move from box one to four.

While form expert The Watchdog rates Journey Beyond a clear-cut $2.40 favourite, he’s left the exciting prospect out of his top four, believing “pace in five (Winston Town) is a worry”.

WATCH: “The good thing is home!” JOURNEY BEYOND (B1) secured his eighth win from nine starts with a dominant 29.48sec victory on debut at Sandown Park last Sunday when sent out $1.10.

“That doesn’t worry me too much!” Kayla quipped about The Watchdog overlooking Journey Beyond.

“In his 450m run at Shepparton (25.02sec) his run-home was enormous, and he ran a good race over 460m at Warragul (25.93sec), so he gave me every indication he’d get the ‘500’.

“I’d schooled him at Sandown before these heats too, but he’s only new to two-turn racing, so I was really happy with his heat run.

“There is a bit of pace in the race on Thursday, so from box four he’ll need to come out running and get a nice position.

“He can be a little bit hit and miss, but as soon as he hits the ground he takes off. He’s a very smart dog too; he has great field sense.”


Gerard GuthrieGerard Guthrie

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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