Greyhound Racing Tips: Expert Previews

Welcome to our Greyhound Racing Tips page. Our Greyhound Analysts will provide back and lay selections for selected cards, along with previewing the biggest group races across the racing calendar, also giving their best selections for the race with a preview on every single runner.

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Sandown Park

Race 6 – 715 metres Mixed 4/5

#2 He Shall Power

He was a fantastic run in last week’s Sandown Cup. He arguably should have won the race and he finished very strongly to just miss.

This did look a little flattering as the winner of the race Bronski Beat pulled up right after the winning post which accentuated their runs. But, it was a Group 1 final nonetheless and he meets a much weaker field here.

What About It should show early zip and should look to push off the track which should allow He Shall Power plenty of breathing room early. This is very important to this chaser’s chances as he needs to land in a more prominent position early. He should be able to achieve that here.

BACK (WIN) – He Shall Power for 1.5 units at > $2.15


Race 11 515 metres Grade 5

#4 Special Victim

He was disappointing in a recent run at The Meadows in what looked a very winnable race on paper. This race has some depth to it with Judge Hook, Madalia Ken, Sharni’s My Girl and Bees and Honey all racing in good form and are all winnable chances.

Special Victim began poorly last start and if he repeats that effort here. I can see him being buried back in the field whilst other chasers in the race including Sharni’s My Girl can show fantastic zip and be off and gone. He also has not raced at this track since his debut run on March 1, which looks another negative.

LAY (WIN) – Special Victim for 1.5 units at < $3.60

Sandown Cup Final – Thursday 28 May

Distance: 715m
Track Record: Here’s Tears 41.157 (30/1/2019)


Field and Stats

Rockstar Beav – Best 41.69.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 6.13. 71 career starts for 19 wins and 29 placings. 8 starts over this trip for 3 wins and 1 second. 3 wins and 2 placings from 7 starts this draw. The Dailly camp has yet to win a Sandown Cup.

He is a very versatile chaser, two starts back he was able to find a forward position from Box 1 over 595 metres and win. Then, in his heat last week he used Box 8 to perfection by staying wide early, clicking through the gears and railing well on the home turn to prove too strong for He Shall Power.

He returns to an inside draw here which is neither a negative or positive for him. In any Group 1 event I would rather have the cherry than a wide draw. He is in great form and really running out the 700 mete journey well.

He should find a forward position again but there is more early speed this time around with True Detective, Zipping Clifford, Blazing Cartier and He Shall Power all likely to be upfront and drawn to his outside there is a chance he could get buried back midfield.

I still think he is a strong chance to win the race and if you liked him I wouldn’t talk you out of it but at the current quote in early markets he looks a rock bottom twice. If he got to $5 plus on the exchange then you would have something on.

Blazing Cartier – Best 41.68 (22/11/19).

Won heat in 41.93 with a 1st split of 6.06 (quickest). 48 career starts for 13 wins and 20 placings. 5 wins and 5 placings from 11 starts over this trip. 2 wins and 2 placings from 6 starts this draw. Trainer Rob Britton has trained the last 6 of 7 Group 1 winners over the 715m here.

She returned close to double figure odds for Betfair Hub followers in her heat run. She surprised me by exploding to the lead, I was expecting more of a midfield run and then flying home late but she got the job done early.

The win had extra merit because going into the catching pen the first time around she was hassled by Mister Harlewood who appeared to lose concentration, but she still proved too good.

I normally prefer her from wide draws but if she can begin like she did in her heat run the draw may be irrelevant. She does like room to her outside early in her races and I am not sure she gets that here with Zipping Clifford and True Detective showing speed to her outside.

If they cut her off early there could be trouble. She falls into a similar punting position to Rockstar Beav, she absolutely can win the race but at the early quote of near favoritism I think there is better value elsewhere.

Zipping Clifford – Best 42.41 (24/4/20).

Runner up in heat in 42.75 with a 1st split of 6.18. 44 career starts for 12 wins and 20 placings. 5 starts over this trip for 2 wins and 2 placings. Only 2 starts from this draw for 1 win and 1 unplaced run.

He is a reliable beginner and from the draw he should find a forward position or even go close to leading. I just think this race is beyond him and the pressure will be too high. I am looking to others.

He Shall Power – No best winning time.

Runner up in heat in 41.79, 1st split of 6.13. 17 career starts for 3 wins and 6 placings. Last week’s heat run was his first start over track and distance. 1 start from this draw for 1 win. Youngest and least experienced chaser in field

He was super impressive in his heat run, he gave a huge sight for such a young and inexperienced dog who was having his first start over this distance range. He even looked the winner just before the home turn until he was reeled in late. At this stage of his career I don’t think he can win the race, but it would not surprise me in the slightest if he runs another cheeky race and held on for a placing.

Ella Enchanted – Best 41.49 (30/5/19).

Runner up in heat in a time of 42.21, 1st split of 6.34. 49 career starts for 18 wins and 18 placings. Only missed a placing once over this trip in 7 starts. Has yet to win from this draw in 3 attempts. Runner up in this same race last year.

She is having another crack at this race after a completely luckless run last year. Whilst I don’t think she is going as well as she was at this time last year, I don’t think she needs to be at her best in order to win this.

This campaign has a sense of timing about it and the way the box draws have fallen I could see her in the back half of the field but in a lovely rails position the first time around. There is a possibility the leaders will be cutting at each other and setting the race up for the backmarkers.

I could see her roaring home over the top of them late and at double-figure odds she looks outstanding odds to have a crack at here.

Just Terms – No best winning time.

Runner up in heat in 42.35 with a 1st split of 6.22. 49 career starts for 18 wins and 20 placings. Has yet to win over this trip in 5 attempts with 3 seconds, 1 third and 1 unplaced run. 2 wins and 2 seconds from 4 starts this draw. Has yet to miss a placing in 4 Group 1 Finals. 2020 Group 1 Zoom Top winner at The Meadows.

She has been raced sparingly of late and looked like she needed the run here last week. But she still caught the eye and trainer Anthony Azzopardi has had a great run in Group 1 races over the last year, so she will have a sense of timing about her.

The thing that attracts me to her in this race is that she is an out and out stayer who relishes 700 metres plus. Whereas several other chasers in this field their optimum range would be in the 600-650 metre range.

If there is one iota of trouble up front early in this race then this should play into her hands perfectly and she will be finishing with a powerful burst. She looks juicy odds here and I just have to be on.

True Detective – Best 41.88.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 6.12. 38 career starts for 22 wins and 3 placings. 4 wins from 8 starts over this trip. Only 2 starts from this draw for 1 start and 1 unplaced run. Group 1 Hume Cup winner over 600m and Group 1 placegetter at The Meadows over 725m.

He returned to his best in his heat win, he led all the way and gave nothing else a chance. He has a fantastic pattern in his races because you know what you are going to get. He does his best racing when he can lead early, which he usually does and he keeps on going to win. On the occasions where he has missed the start he doesn’t seem to figure in the finish.

In his heat run he did benefit from the cherry and this looks tougher from Box 7. He will have to be at his best to cross several of these rivals cleanly and he might burn too much petrol early in doing so. Considering he has opened favourite in early markets it doesn’t hold any appeal to me. I have no interest in backing him but I wouldn’t lay him either.

Bronski Beat – Best 41.93 (6/2/20).

Won his heat in 42.07, 1st split of 6.07 (second quickest). 29 career starts for 9 wins and 8 placings. 1 win and 1 placing from 4 starts this draw. 4 wins and 1 placing from 10 starts over track and distance.

He does seem to have plenty of upside and the wide draw here looks suitable. He did benefit from some trouble behind him in his heat run. I don’t think he can figure in the finish here in a race such as this that will have a lot of early and mid-race pressure.

Here’s Tears – 1st emergency. Best 41.16 (30/1/20).

Ran 3rd in heat in 41.92. 1st split of 6.29. 2 wins and 2 placings from 5 starts here. Has won from every box. Track record holder here.

Even though his run looked a little disappointing on paper he still ran a very competitive time and he could figure in the finish if he gained a start here.

Mister Harlewood – 2nd emergency. Best 41.54 (9/4/20).

Ran 3rd in heat in 42.35. 1st split of 6.13. 3 wins and 1 second from 4 starts over this trip. Has won from every box. He was below his best in his heat run but if he gained a start he must be respected and would be right in the market vying for favoritism.


Selections

  • 1st – Just Terms (6)
  • 2nd – Ella Enchanted (5)
  • 3rd – Rockstar Beav (1)

Betting Strategy

BACK (WIN) – Ella Enchanted at > $10.00 for 2 units

BACK (WIN) – Just Terms at > $9.00 for 2 unit

Harrison Dawson Final – Sandown Park Race 6 – Thursday 21 May

Distance: 515m
Track Record: Hooked On Scotch 28.939 (22/11/2019)


Field and Stats

Vivatar
Best 29.57 (24/4/20).

Won his heat in 29.65 with a 1st split of 5.13. 46 career starts for 16 wins and 10 placings. He is a Box 1 Bandit with 5 wins and 3 placings from 9 starts. 10 starts over this trip for 4 wins and 2 placings. Ran 4th in 2020 Horsham Cup.

Does he have the class to win a race of this quality? Probably not. But, the box draws in these ultra-competitive Group Race Finals can have a huge impact. This is by far his best draw and inside draws over this track and trip are a huge advantage so there’s two big ticks for his chances here. He must be included as a winning chance and off the great map here he should be able to run into the placings.

Leon Bale
Best 29.42 (31/10/19).

Ran third in heat in 29.84 with a 1st split of 5.11. 45 career starts for 10 wins and 15 placings. 21 career starts for 4 wins and 6 placings. Only 1 win and 1 placing from 6 starts this draw. Recent Warrnambool Cup finalist.

Personally, I find him a little hard to catch but with the inside draw here he can find a forward position and he is strong enough to be on the positive side of any shuffle up at the first bend. I don’t think he can win but he is more than capable of running a drum here.

Simon Told Helen
Best 29.21.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.06. 22 career starts for 13 wins and 6 placings. 6 starts over this trip for 3 wins and 2 seconds. Has yet to place from this draw in two attempts. Group 1 Silver Chief winner at The Meadows and Group 1 Perth Cup winner.

He returned to his blistering best here in his heat run. He was able to show his customary acceleration a few steps after box rise and it really is a sight to be seen. I thought he was going to find some trouble as he was carving over from Box 7 but all of a sudden he had shrugged his rivals off and had exploded to the lead. Now he has a better draw closer to the rails and Leon Bale and Lightning Blast are not known for blistering speed off the mat so he should get plenty of room.

The only worry would be Short Pork who has lightning early speed but seeing Simon Told Helen will be on the inside of him I am confident he can get the best of him mid-race and hold on to win.

Lightning Blast
Best 29.79 (7/3/19).

Ran this time in heat win in 29.83 with a 1st split of 5.26 (slowest). 42 career starts for 7 wins and 22 placings. 22 starts over this trip for 2 wins and 14 placings. This is his best-performed box with 3 wins and 2 placings from 6 starts. Most experienced chaser over this track & trip.

He does look to be making up the numbers here and he has a stack of early zip drawn either side of him so I cannot see him getting much room to show his best in this field.

Short Pork
No best winning time.

Runner up in heat in 29.57, 1st split of 5.09. 37 career starts for 17 wins and 14 placings. 2 starts over this trip for 1 second and 1 unplaced run. This is the only box he has yet to win from, 2 placings and 1 unplaced run from 3 starts.

He is a very reliable beginner and will be vying for the lead at the winning post the first time around. I don’t think he has the class or strength to win this race unless there was a big shuffle up behind him. He can definitely make or break the chances of others in the race as Tiggerlong Tonk and Jax Bale may have difficulty getting around him at the first turn.

Tiggerlong Tonk
Best 29.12 (16/4/20).

Runner up in heat in 29.36 with a 1st split of 5.16. 37 career starts for 20 wins and 8 placings. 13 starts over this trip for 5 wins and 3 seconds. 3 wins and 4 placings from 9 starts from this draw. Group 2 and Group 3 winner. Group 1 place-getter, this is his third Group 1 Final.

To the naked eye he looked a little disappointing in his heat run when Jax Bale proved too good for him but then they showed the semaphore board and I was gobsmacked when the time of 29.14 came up for Jax Bale. So, in reality, he was far from disgraced but the draw here again looks problematic. Given the way he jumped last start I cannot see him leading and with the pace under him I am not sure if he lands in a favorable position at the first bend here.

Jax Bale
Best 29.14.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.04 (quickest). Least experienced chaser in field with only 12 career starts for 5 wins and 4 seconds. 6 starts over this trip for 2 wins and 2 seconds.

He looks to be in a similar position to Tiggerlong Tonk here and has been cruelled by a wide draw. Although he ran the fastest 1st split of 5.04 in his heat run I am not sure he can cross them from the wide draw here.

The outside draws have been a graveyard at Sandown Park of late and in a high-pressure race and given he has only had 12 race starts this may be a bridge too far. I am happy to take him on given his current short quote in early markets.

Mepunga Pegasus
Best 29.75 (25/7/19).

Ran third in heat in 29.44 with a 1st split of 5.23 (second slowest). 39 career starts for 10 wins and 12 placings. 15 starts over this trip for 4 wins and 6 placings. Has yet to win from this draw in 3 starts.

He probably is just below top class and he would have needed Box 1 to be any chance of winning this. From the outside draw I cannot see him finishing in the Top 4.

Halberd Bale (1st emergency)
Best 29.32 (7/5/20).

Ran third in heat in 29.84 with a 1st split of 5.05. 34 career starts for 12 wins and 8 placings. He has been racing very well of late but I am not sure he has the class to win a Group 1. He would need an inside draw to be able to find the placings here.

Fernando’s Riot (2nd emergency)
Best 29.30 (2/1/20).

Ran 4th in heat in 29.66. 1st split of 5.16. 48 career starts for 18 wins and 14 placings. 2020 Australian Cup winner. He is versatile enough to win from off the pace but would likely need some trouble upfront. The key to his racing pattern is that he finds the rails early in his races.


Selections

  • 1st – Simon Told Helen (3)
  • 2nd – Vivatar (1)
  • 3rd – Tiggerlong Tonk (6)

Betting Strategy

BACK (WIN) – Simon Told Helen at > $2.50 for 2 units

BACK (PLACE) – Vivatar at > $2.00 for 1 unit

LAY (WIN) – Jax Bale at < $5.00 for 2 units

Sandown Park – 21st May

Race 2 – Sandown Cup Heat 1

Rockstar Beav managed to beat a hot 595-metre field here last week. Even though he had a great map and benefited from the inside draw he still got the job done impressively. He steps back up in distance here which is no problem and his best time of 41.79 is very competitive here.

The wide draw is also no issue for him, he will just need to navigate Here’s Tears early but most of these chasers will be looking for the rails which adds to my confidence as he should stay wide early and click through the gears.

BACK (WIN) – Rockstar Beav for 2 units at > $2.90


Race 4 – Sandown Cup Heat 2

Captain Dynamite may well be the stayer with the most upside in Australia. His gradual step up in distances have been jaw-dropping. His run home time over the 595 metres was equal to any gun dog’s run home time over 515 metres, which is insanity.

At his 715-metre debut he ran a sizzling 41.76 and again his run home time was an incredible 11.23. There is that small query of a second up flat run/ fatigue over the 715 metres but I just can’t see it happening given how strong he is.

I am not sure True Detective is going as well as he was in previous months and the jury is out on if Tauwitchere will make it as a top line stayer. Therefore, Captain Dynamite looks a good bet here.

BACK (WIN) – Captain Dynamite for 3 units at > $3.00


Race 5 – Sandown Cup Heat 3

Blazing Cartier looks to be great value here. She hit the line really well and just missed running down Mister Harlewood who will start well into red figures in this race. My main concerns are that she benefited from an optimum pattern last week, she likes room to her outside in races and she managed to have a stack of room from the 595 metre boxes the first time around and still couldn’t reel in Mister Harlewood.

Now, Mister Harlewood has the benefit of Box 1 whereas Blazing Cartier has Box 3, which is actually more of a hindrance than a benefit to her giving her pattern of needing early room. Having said that I think there is far too big a price discrepancy, trainer Rob Britton has a great Sandown Cup record and I’m happy to back Blazing Cartier at nice odds here and hope she finishes over the top of them late.

BACK (WIN) – Blazing Cartier for 1 unit at > $6.00


Race 7 – Sandown Cup Heat 4

I really liked the way Submission hit the line at her 715-metre debut here last start. Her winning time of 41.90 was very respectable and trainer Jason Thompson will have her trained to the minute so I could see her improving again on that time. The inside draw looks very suitable.

Rajasthan in Box 2 will also pattern forward, but he should push off the track and give her room. Tornado Tears is first up since February 1st and that is not an ideal preparation for this series and I am happy to take him on. The rest of the race falls away after that which adds to my confidence of Submission winning.

BACK (WIN) – Submission form 2 units at > $3.50

Sapphire Crown Final – Sandown Park Race 6 – Thursday 14 May

Distance: 515m
Track Record: Hooked On Scotch 28.939 (22/11/2019)


Field and Stats

Chart Topper
Best 29.55 (24/4/20).

Runner up in heat in 29.56 with a 1st split of 5.20 (slowest). Has a 5.12 1st split PB from Box 1. 12 career starts for 4 wins and 5 placings. Never missed a placing here in 5 starts with 3 wins and 2 seconds. 1 win and 1 placing from 3 starts this draw. This is her first Group race final.

She has come a long way since being unable to win a Tier 3 Maiden at Warragul in late March. Since then she has won 4 of her next 6 starts and ran second in the other two. She looks very well suited to inside draws.

This is further enhanced by Sandown Park having a huge bias to inside draws of late. Madalia Maggie can use some of the track on the turns so she looks to have every chance to show her best here and get a lovely run through. I am keen on her to run a place.

Madalia Maggie
Best 29.41.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.08. 25 career starts for 8 wins and 9 placings. 4 starts over this track and distance for 2 wins and 1 second. This is her best performed and most frequented box with 2 wins and 3 placings from 6 starts. This is her first Group race final.

She has not missed a placing in her last 6 starts. However, I was surprised she could win a heat of a Group 1 series and she can’t be ruled out of winning this either, simply because she has an inside draw. She should be able to get forward from this draw and if she gets the right run through at the first turn she is right in this. Ideally, she would need some trouble behind to hold on and win.

Spring Fair
Best 29.63.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.09 which was a PB split time. 41 career starts for 12 wins and 17 placings. 5 starts over this trip for 2 wins and 2 seconds. This is her first Group race final.

She has been one of the most reliable beginners in Victoria over the last month. She should explode out and if she can find the early lead she should give a big sight. She also falls into the category of needing some trouble behind her as she runs a really strong 450 metres but the last 65 metres on city tracks she is tiring.

I can’t have her in a field of this quality but she may be able to hold on for a placing.

Black Opium
Best 29.20.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.02 (quickest). Has a 1st split PB of 5.01. Most experienced chaser in field with 48 career starts for 24 wins and 11 placings. 13 starts over this trip for 8 wins and 3 seconds. This is her 7th Group 1 Final. Has yet to win a Group Race but runner up in 2018 Melbourne Cup.

She is right in the zone at the moment and was never headed in her 29.20 heat win. She is clearly the best and quickest greyhound in the race, it’s simply a matter of her not getting tangled up at the first turn by Madalia Maggie and Spring Fair.

If she can clear those two then she should be winning this. She is also versatile enough to win from just off the pace if needed. She ticks plenty of boxes and deserves to add a Group 1 to her resume here.

Aston Silk
Best 29.51 (2/1/20).

Runner up in heat in 29.95, 1st split of 5.13. 15 career starts for 6 wins and 7 placings. 5 starts over this trip for 3 wins and 1 second. Only 1 race start from this draw for 1 second. Ran 7th in only Group 1 start in National Futurity final at Wentworth Park.

I am just not sure she is going as well as she was earlier this year which is a harsh comment given she has only missed a placing twice in her 15 start career. She was unable to win a much weaker race at Warragul recently which shocked me given her forward position albeit the race was in terrible wet conditions. I also can’t see her getting a clear run with all the pace underneath her so I am looking to others.

Origami Angel
Best 29.34 (15/12/19).

Runner up in heat in 29.88 with a 1st split of 5.09. 29 career starts for 8 wins and 10 placings. 8 starts over this trip for 3 wins and 3 placings. 5 starts from this draw for 1 win and 2 placings. Runner up in 2019 Group 2 Laurels over this trip.

She looked like she was going to be a real star early in her career but she has tapered off somewhat. She has not won in her past 7 starts which is hardly an ideal form line going into a race of this quality. Her best form has also come from inside draws so the negatives here look too great for mine.

Nangar Diva
No best winning time.

Runner up in heat in 29.74 with a 1st split of 5.10. 46 career starts for 17 wins and 14 placings. Only 1 win from 4 starts from this draw. Only 1 start over this trip. This is her 5th Group Race Final.

Last week in her heat run, she was a lay bet for Betfair Hub followers and heart palpitations occurred early as she exploded to the lead. She was stronger than I thought she would be but thankfully Talulah Bale went straight by her late.

This draw doesn’t look great for her as even if she explodes out I doubt she can cross Spring Fair or Black Opium. I could see her finding some trouble at the first turn here and I can’t recommend her in this event.

Talulah Bale
Best 29.52.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 5.15 (second slowest in field). 40 career starts for 11 wins and 12 placings. Most experienced chaser over this trip with 17 starts for 3 wins and 7 placings. 1 wins and 3 placings from 6 starts from this draw. Ran last in only Group race start at Warragul.

She is really starting to put it all together in her races. Although she has only won once in her past five starts, she has lost to some A-grade chasers who have great form lines. The main issue here is the outside draw.

Box 8 has been a graveyard at Sandown Park of late with only a 8.38% winning percentage over 515 metres over the last year. This is a Group 1 race which makes it even tougher for her and I think she will struggle to finish in the first half of the field.

Wild Flyer (1st emergency)
No best winning time.

Ran third in heat in 29.75 with a 1st split of 5.12. 24 career starts for 11 wins and 7 placings.

She is very strong and can run extraordinary run home times. I think she has been a touch disappointing in her two Victorian runs to date and would need an inside draw if she gains a start to show her best.

Zipping Zarbo (2nd emergency)
Best 29.67 (13/2/20).

Runner up in heat in 29.86. 13 career starts for 11 wins and 2 placings. Any greyhound that has had 13 career starts for 11 wins and 2 placings needs to be taken seriously in any race she contests. She would be right in this if she was to gain a start.


Selections

  • 1st – Black Opium (3)
  • 2nd – Chart Topper (1)
  • 3rd – Madalia Maggie (2)

Betting Strategy

BACK (WIN) – Black Opium (3) > $2 (2 units)

BACK (PLACE) – Chart Topper (1) > $2.50 (2 units)

Sandown Park – 14th May

Race 5 – Harrison Dawson Heat 1

For Good Odds Harada, this is a tough task after nearly a month off racing. He has been very good in his last few starts but these were in much easier races at Goulburn and Bulli.

There is no doubting the dog is a champion but taking on the top grade of dogs from a squeeze draw at this stage of his career and at a short quote is a recipe for trouble. I would just prefer to rely on the race hard fit dogs such as any of Vivatar, Lots of Chatter, Leon Bale and Aston Cade to get the job done and lay Good Odds Harada.

LAY (WIN) – Good Odds Harada for 2 units at < $3.30


Race 7 – Harrison Dawson Heat 2

After a rare error where he missed the start and was checked off the mat in a heat of the Warrnambool Cup, Tiggerlong Tonk returned to form in a big way with an all the way win here last start in 29.26. He is more than capable of repeating that effort here and the wide draw doesn’t bother me.

He likes some early room and Midnight Monarch who is drawn to his outside should also stay wide and give him some space. Mepunga Pegasus can also be slow out and hunts for the rail so in theory this draw looks fine for him. I think he can lead all the way here.

BACK (WIN) – Tiggerlong Tonk for 2 units at < $1.90

Sandown Park – 7th May

Race 2 – Sapphire Crown Heat 1

Nangar Diva is having her first Victorian start here and she faces a very tough ask in her first start for a new kennel. She does have plenty of early zip but this has been showcased in much easier races in New South Wales.

This is an extremely competitive heat with a stack of pace around her. Run Baba Run will be steaming down from the outside and she will have trouble crossing Zipping Zarbo underneath her so I can see her finding some trouble at the first turn. There are too many negatives here for my liking.

LAY (WIN) – Nangar Diva 1.5 units at < $4.60


Race 3 – Sapphire Crown Heat 2

With the impeccable early speed of Iylee Bale and Junk Food Junkie there will be no room for the faint hearted at the first bend here. With that speed map in mind, You Tell Me has to be a considerable risk here at the short quote and from a wide draw with all the pace around her.

If there is any trouble at the first turn this could set the race for the backmarkers and inside division. Wild Flyer was airborne in runs at Richmond with insane run home times. Zipping Lena has been racing well with a forward pattern so I am hoping they can get the job done and beat You Tell Me.

LAY (WIN) – You Tell Me 1.5 units at < $2.85


Race 5 – Sapphire Crown Heat 3

Black Opium returned to her best city form last start and seemed to dispel any myths that she doesn’t go from inside draws. She just showed too much pace and too much class. She looks more than capable of doing the same thing here as there isn’t any lightning beginners to her outside.

Shima Breeze has only raced once since late February and looks underdone for mine, and that is her main danger in the market which only adds to my confidence here.

BACK (WIN) – Black Opium 2 units at > $1.95

Warrnambool Cup Final

Distance: 450m
Track Record: Unlawful Entry 24.719 seconds (27/4/2016)


Field and Stats

Simon Told Helen
Best 24.98 (12/9/19)

Runner up in heat in 25.25 with a 1st split of 6.53 (quickest). 20 career starts for 12 wins and 5 placings. 3 starts over this trip for 2 wins and 1 second. Only 2 starts from this draw for 1 win and 1 placing. Group 1 Silver Chief winner at The Meadows and Group 1 Perth Cup winner.

Even though favourite punters were burnt in his heat run, I still thought he was very good. He had not raced since a Perth Cup campaign in mid-March and it looked like a case of him needing the run. He still showed his amazing acceleration mid-race and was beaten by Zambora Smokey who was rock hard fit.

In wet conditions, fitness was the prevailing factor late in the race. He has a fantastic draw here and with that run under his belt I am expecting a replica performance of him zooming to the lead along the rails. However, on this occasion and second up here I think he can hold on and win.

Zambora Smokey
Best 24.86 (2/4/20)

Won his heat in 25.08 (quickest), 1st split of 6.57. 15 career starts for 11 wins and 2 seconds. 3 start for 3 wins over track and trip. 1 from 1 this draw. Has won his last 7 starts.

He is probably the hottest dog in Victoria and he was sensational in his heat defeating Simon Told Helen. He lobbed second very early on and for Betfair Hub followers he got the cash for us. Although the race looks set up for a repeat of him and Simon Told Helen battling it out down the straight given they have the two inside draws, I am not sure it’s so simple this time around.

He takes a slight turn to the right off the mat and in a high pressure race like a Cup Final he could find some immediate pressure. If he does miss it slightly by the time he can accelerate into full gear Simon Told Helen may have pinched a break on him.

To negate the worry about pressure on his outside, the one dog in the race you would want to be in that position would be Aston Cade, he also can take a few strides to get going and step right. So, if you like Zambora Smokey I wouldn’t talk you out of backing him, just be wary that there may be some more pressure to his outer this time around.

Aston Cade
Best 25.12.

Ran this time in heat with a 1st split of 6.69. 34 career starts for 13 wins and 7 placings. 2 wins and 1 unplaced run from 3 starts from this draw. 1 from 1 over this track and trip.

He dug deep in his heat win to win by a pimple. He is very strong and does look the best of the backmarkers but the pattern of the race looks against him here. He will be outpaced early by the two dogs drawn underneath him and on his outside Razor Sharp and Jax Bale should be showing early zip so I can see him getting squeezed here. I am looking to others.

Razor Sharp
Best 25.24.

Ran this time in heat, 1st split of 6.56. 23 career starts for 14 wins and 6 placings. 3 wins and 1 placing from 5 starts from this draw. 2 wins from 3 starts over this trip.

He is so consistent and he tries his heart out. He would need everything to go right and he might just need some trouble upfront in order to win this. This dog would run through a brick wall so I could see him bursting to the lead if there was a scrimmage. He is more than capable of finding a placing here.

Jax Bale
No best winning time.

Ran second in heat in 25.13 with a 1st split of 6.64. Least experienced chaser in field with 10 career starts for 4 wins and 4 placings. Has yet to race from this draw. His heat run was his first start at the track.

I thought it might be a case of too much too soon for this young up and comer who was having his first start in a Cup Heat type company. It was the strongest race he had contested in his career to date and he handled the occasion superbly.

He was stiff to lose the photo finish but has made the final nonetheless. The box draw has done him no favours and this looks beyond him at this stage of his career.

Faithy Bale
Best 25.99.

Recorded this time in heat win, 1st split of 6.63. 23 career starts for 10 wins and 7 placings. 1 from 1 over track and trip. Has yet to win from this draw (2 unplaced runs).

She used the inside draw to full advantage in her heat win. I’m not sure she gets any favours here from a horrible draw. I can see her having nowhere to go unless she exploded out and even then she wouldn’t be able to cross Simon Told Helen. I can’t see her getting a crack at them here.

Leon Bale
Best 25.99.

Recorded this time in heat win, 1st split of 6.65. 43 career starts for 10 wins and 13 placings. 1 from 1 track and trip. Only 2 starts from this draw for 1 placing and 1 unplaced run. Most experienced chaser in field.

It was a case of him making less mistakes than the others in his heat win. Unbelievably, three other dogs fell behind him in that race. He is strong so once he found the front they weren’t going to be able to beat him. This looks a major step up and I can’t see him winning this, especially from the wide draw. Place hopes look best.

Security Code
Best 25.59.

Ran this time in heat win with a 1st split of 6.72. 35 career starts for 10 wins and 13 placings. 2 starts over this trip for 1 win and 1 placing. 1 win and 3 placings from 7 starts this draw.

He used Box 1 to a tee in his heat win. He goes from one extreme to the other here and this looks to be a really poor draw for him in a race of this quality. He is another in the category of not being able to get across here and I think he finishes in the back half of the field.

Spearhead (1st emergency)
Best 25.19 (13/2/20).

2nd in heat in time of 25.27, 1st split of 6.72. 45 career starts for 11 wins and 18 placings. He kept coming in his heat and tried his best. I don’t think he has the class to win this event.

Jim Zarr Dashian (2nd emergency)
No best winning time.

2nd in heat in 25.53. 15 career starts for 8 wins and 4 placings. Current track record holder at Bendigo over 425 metres. He can produce freakish times, the only chink in his armor is his box manners where he can be very hit and miss. He can never be ruled out of any race he contests.


Selections

  • 1st – Simon Told Helen (1)
  • 2nd – Zambora Smokey (2)
  • 3rd – Razor Sharp (4)

Betting Strategy

BACK (WIN) – Simon Told Helen (1) > $2.50 for 3 units

Qualifiers Back and Lay Prospects

Warrnambool Cup Heats Thursday 30th April

Race 4 – Cup Heat 1

#8 Crimson Vixen

Whilst I don’t think Crimson Vixen is racing as well as she was last year she is still racing with great heart, professionalism and most importantly, she is still winning. She has won her past three starts and although they were in much weaker races she managed to beat Untold Solider fair and square and he would be one of the fastest short coursers in the country. So, she still has that zip and this is very important from the wide draw here.

Zambora Lou holds the key to the race, he is hit or miss of late at box rise but when he hits he can explode out. If he is to begin he could give Crimson Vixen a lovely cart over and she could explode away. If Zambora Lou misses it she is still versatile enough to win this and she is undefeated in 4 starts from the wide draw.

BACK (WIN) – Crimson Vixen 1.5 units at > $2.70


Race 5 – Cup Heat 2

#2 Jax Bale

Jax Bale is definitely a chaser on the up but dropping back in distance here and finding himself in a top grade cup heat are a couple of big negatives for mine. He also has yet to race at the track. Aston Stealth and Rock and Roll will likely show a similar pattern off the mat so I could see him getting squeezed early. In addition, there are some very strong dogs in the race including Aston Cade and Mepunga Pegasus and if Jax Bale has to work too hard early, then these two chasers will be roaring home over the top late. There is also the unknown factor of More More More who is having his first Victorian start so there are enough variables here to take on Jax Bale.

LAY (WIN) – Jax Bale 2 units at < $5.00


Race 6 – Cup Heat 3

#4 Vivatar 

This could be a trickier race than the markets suggest. Jim Zarr Dashian broke the track record at Bendigo last start in an outstanding 23.37 run. He has exploded out of the boxes in his last three starts but he was hit and miss prior to that. Is he due to miss? He probably is the real deal but has come up very short in early markets. I am not game to lay him either. Hard Style Rico does his best racing from wide draws but I am not sure he will be able to cross these rivals cleanly, he is also very short in early markets.

Looking elsewhere for value, Vivatar is a reliable beginner who caught the eye last start at Sandown Park. He also has a great record here and has never missed a placing in 4 starts. If he can find the rail mid race I can see him flashing home late along the paint and is worth a throw at the stumps here.

BACK (WIN) – Vivatar 0.5 units at > $10


Race 7 – Cup Heat 4

#6 Seal The Deal

Seal The Deal does do his best racing on horse shoe circuits but he just makes too many mistakes in his races and I am happy to take him on here for a small lay at the price point. Spearhead and Amarillo Highway have been going well of late and they could cause Seal The Deal some early pressure to his outside, which he won’t like.

I am hoping by this point, the two best winning chances in the race, Tiggerlong Tonk and Razor Sharp will have established an early break and prove too hard to catch.

LAY (WIN) – Seal The Deal 1 unit at > $5.50


Race 8 – Cup Heat 5

#4 Zambora Smokey

Zamora Smokey looks to be a real star in the making. He ticks two important boxes here. He has excellent early speed which should negate the squeeze draw and he is rock hard fit as he has been racing most weeks since late March. He has won his last 6 starts. The Thompson kennel are meticulous with their planning and the two starts over the course and distance in early April would have been planned with this race in mind.

The favourite in the race will undoubtedly be Simon Told Helen. He is a freak chaser with incredible acceleration and has a great record at the track. However, he hasn’t raced since a Perth Cup campaign in mid March and at likely red figures I am not interested in backing him.

BACK (WIN) – Zambora Smokey 2 units at > $3.10


Race 9 – Cup Heat 6

#2 Snags McKenzie

Snags McKenzie looks to have a great draw here. He should be able to find the rails early as he should show more early zip than Security Code and find the paint. The only small concern is if Iago Bale cuts him off early. Whilst I don’t expect Snags to lead, I do expect him to get a lovely sit behind the likely leader Speed Star. He should be able to run over the top of him late.

BACK (WIN) – Snags McKenzie 2 units at > $2.50

#6 Speed Star

Whilst Speed Star is an extremely reliable beginner, I believe he is better suited to 400 metre races or less at this stage of his career. There was nothing wrong with his 25.18 run here last week, in fact he tried his heart out. But with the smaller field here I expect him to get swamped late, hopefully by Snags McKenzie but I wouldn’t be surprised if Iago Bale or Scatterbox were also to fly past him late.

LAY (WIN) – Speed Star 1 unit at < $5.00

Angle Park

Race 1 515 metres

#8 Buddy Guy

I was disappointed with his run here last week. From a draw close to the rails (where he wants) he found himself in a forward position but did not go on with it. That race was a 6 dog field and he mapped well, now he returns to a bigger field and now has to contend with the outside draw. His best runs are where he finds the paint early and zooms along the fence. I can’t see that happening here.

Allinga Jess, Goddess of Love and Cawbourne Clancy should all find forward positions and land on the bunny which will likely leave Buddy Guy posted wide. The other option is he misses the start and dives for the rail but by then I am hoping the leaders will be too far in front of him.

LAY (WIN) – Buddy Guy < $4.40 for 2 units


Race 8 515 metres

#3 It’s A Riot

When he was first up from a break here on April 2, he had a wide draw in a tricky race and he had no luck in running. The in a Head to Head Match Race the following start he never gave his rival a look in running a slick 29.58 and ran second in the overall times of the 4 match ups.

I have always preferred this dog from inside draws and last week he had the tough ask of Box 8 and he really caught my eye with the way he chased and found a way to win. He was kept wide for the duration of the race and still managed to win.

In this final he comes up with a much more suitable draw closer to the fence and right in line with the lure. Rev Fred Sloy could be slow out and should head left after box rise and Two Times Twice should also be beaten for early speed, so he should be able to find the rail. He can give a huge sight here at nice odds.

BACK (WIN) – It’s A Riot at > $4.00 for 2 units

Sandown Race 1

Jax Bale looks to be a real rising star of the track. Last start he led all the way at The Meadows and did so from a tricky wide draw. He looks better suited closer to the rails and right in line with the lure from Box 3.

There doesn’t seem a ton of early speed around him. Weblec Jack is strong at the end of his races but isn’t known for early speed. Zipping Clive has a similar pattern to Weblec Jack and Busy Bella is well drawn from the red but doesn’t seem to be going as well as previous months.

Jax Bale looks every chance to find the rails and a forward position and hopefully prove too good.

BACK (WIN) – Jax Bale at > $1.95 for 1.5 units


Sandown Race 3

Wild Card looks to have plenty of upside. This chaser went straight to the front and never looked like losing in his heat run at Sale. A small query would be that he has yet to race at this track but as it’s a Sale to Sandown Final neither have 4 other runners in the race.

The Thompson kennel are meticulous with their planning so it is likely Wild Card would have trialled here at some stage. He also looks to map well here.

Zipping Hunter has been slow out in recent starts so he should be able to go straight to the rails. Diamond Cartel is also a moderate beginner and Moroka Magic is a wide runner who could spear off at the first turn and take care of the outside division. There are plenty of ticks to back Wild Card here.

BACK (WIN) – Wild Card at > $2.80 for 1.5 units

Angle Park – Race 3 – Eastar Match Race Series


Overall Winner

BACK (WIN) – Two Times Twice (1 unit) at > $8.00


Match Up 1

Cairnlea Ebony (Box 1)

Alfieri (Box 3)

Alfieri looks very hard to go against here. He is versatile enough to either lead or come from behind and win. Although I think the early leader to the first peg looks a little unpredictable as Cairnlea Ebony’s best racing pattern and wins have come from her finding a forward position early.

The problem with her is she hasn’t raced in 84 days whereas Alfieri has been going around weekly for the past month. He has a huge fitness edge here and with that, he should be extending his lead late and winning this.

BACK (WIN) – Alfieri (4 units) at > $1.25


Match Up 2

Two Times Twice (Box 1)

Maddison Kaye (Box 3)

This is a fascinating match-up. Both chasers are known as wide runners but Maddison Kaye has shown a dislike for inside draws in full fields as she tends to go right out of the boxes. She gets the pattern to suit her here. However, I was disappointed with her run here last Thursday where I thought she had every chance and couldn’t get the job done.

Two Times Twice shows his best over the 600-meter distance and the drop back on distance here would be a query for some, but not for me. In fact, with this Match race format, it suits him to a tee as he will only be getting stronger as the race goes on.

His only negative is he has only had one run since March 5th but as he is such a strong chaser, he should have some residual fitness. I am hoping he can hit the lead down the back straight if Maddison Kaye pushes off the fence which she has a habit of doing.

BACK (WIN) – Two Times Twice (4 units) at < $1.80


Match Up 3

Double By Design (Box 1)

Wooden Tiger (Box 3)

Double by Design flew around the track here last week in a flying 29.64 however the track did seem to be playing very quick on the night so the time on the clock might be flattered somewhat.

His runs prior to that were only fair so from a punting point of view you have to ask can he repeat this blistering effort or was it a time anomaly on the night. I would be leaning towards the latter.

Wooden Tiger has freakish abilities but we don’t always get the chance to see them. If there is any trouble in any race he competes in you can bet he will be front and centre of finding it.

It was a smart move by the trainer putting him up over 731 meters in the hopes of avoiding trouble. His 43.13 win here was super and has likely been freshened for this series.

The drop back in distance is not a worry as he is just a very fast dog on the bunny no matter the distance. I’m not sure he can lead this early but he will be roaring home over the top late.

BACK (WIN) – Wooden Tiger (4 units) at > $1.70


Match Up 4

It’s a Riot (Box 1)

Boss Mclaren (Box 3)

It’s A Riot is another in the category of being freshened for this. He has only raced once since an Australian Cup campaign at The Meadows in February so there is a fitness query on him. He has come up trumps with the box draw here as he does his best racing from inside draws.

In his run here last week he had a horror wide draw and found plenty of bother but hit the line really well.  I am not sure what to make of him overall here given the very short quote.

Boss McLaren definitely has a fitness edge here. The box draw doesn’t worry me as It’s A Riot should be heading left out of the boxes so he will have a stack of room early. He does take a few strides to get going so he looks suited to this format.

The last start here he was blocked for a run at the home turn when he was winding up so it was a forgive run. Given he is going to start black figures in this matchup I think he is worth a small play here.

BACK (WIN) – Boss Mclaren (1 unit) at > $2.5

Sandown Race 1

Last start at The Meadows it was a case of what could go wrong did go wrong. Even though he had the inside draw he was cut off at the first turn and lost all momentum and then had to hook to the outside.

Then they jammed up on the home turn and he was posted four wide, an unbelievable chain of events considering he had Box 1. He hit the line well and deserves another chance here.

Immersion ran a sizzling 4.99 to the first section last Sunday but doubt she will find it as easy from the extreme draw. Burn Time would be one of the widest chasers in the country and he is every chance to spear off and cause some havoc at the first bend. So we are left with Fleck and King I Am.

Fleck is very inconsistent and your guess is as good as mine if she will show up or not. King I Am looks to have big upside but is still relatively inexperienced and only went 29.83 on the bunny last start. I think Aston Franc can beat that time and should get a nice run through at juicy odds.

BACK (WIN) – Aston Franc > $4.80 for 1.5 units


Sandown Race 5

He has been airborne in recent starts including breaking the track record at Shepparton in a Cup heat and then going on to win the Cup Final. However, he has yet to have a race start at Sandown Park in his 18 start career. I also have a question mark on him from inside draws.

He seems to like to have plenty of room early and not be crowded on the inside of dogs. At Shepparton in both the heat and final he had Box 8, which suited his pattern. That is certainly not the case here.

Lots of Chatter is a reliable beginner and if he duplicated his beginning here when he raced from Box 1 on March 12 he could cut Hard Style Rico off early.

If this eventuates there are some other classy dogs in the race including Leon Bale, O’Sullivan and Tiggerlong Tonk who will all be carving down from the outside. At the very short odds, I am happy to take him on.

LAY (WIN) – Hard Style Rico < $1.55 for 1.5 units


Current Results

Total Units Staked: 162.50

Total Units Returned: 171.30

ROI: 5.42%


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