Emotional Cup win for lifelong trainer
GREYHOUNDS: On what would have been his mother's 98th birthday, Waterview Heights trainer Ken Staines wiped away a tear as his prized greyhound Raven Izmir collected the $40,000 winner's cheque for the Group 2 Lismore Workers Cup (520m).
Although one to normally show little emotion, the moment on Tuesday night overcame Staines when he realised what he had achieved.
"Today is my mum's birthday, unfortunately she is not with us but this is a truly special moment having won this race on a day like today,” he said.
Raven Izmir had drawn box two for the final and, having started four times for four wins from the alley, the odds were in her favour. As the bunny rolled and the lids opened, Raven Izmir was second after the first sector.
She then hit her stride, having railed hard underneath Chris Riordon-trained Fabrique. The pair traded strides along the back straight. Hot on their heels was Bad Neighbour, which was set to pounce if the leaders ran into any trouble. But the flying Raven Izmir continued to drive around the Lismore track, pulling out a two-length lead over Fabrique.
As they entered the final turn, Raven Izmir ($3.30 favourite) dashed away to win by 3½ lengths from Fabrique ($6) and Bad Neighbour ($6.10).
It was a major turnaround for Raven Izmir who only earlier this month was ruled out of the Ladbrokes and Greyhound Racing NSW Million Dollar Chase at Wentworth Park. Local trainer Dave Irwin was also a winner on Tuesday, taking out the Joh Stollery Novice with That's Lil Vicki.