Falls hoping to claim notable win at tonight's greyhounds
NEIL Falls has his hands full busting bugs but he is hoping to claim a notable win at the Lismore greyhound track tonight.
The Backmede trainer has promising newcomer Crankshaft jumping from box one in the third of six heats of the $10,000-to-the-winner Cosmic Rumble Stud Sprint Series (520m), one of the biggest races of the year in the Northern Rivers.
It means there is precious little time to rest but as he loves greyhounds so much, Falls is happy with his dual role.
"It certainly means long hours in the shed with the greyhounds," he said. "I'm at work late at night and early in the morning with them.
"Training is a family thing as my grandparents had greyhounds. I think it's in my blood now.
"Having greyhounds like Crankshaft and getting greyhounds in the big races makes it easier, but I love winning maiden races too. I just really enjoy racing."
Illness has hampered Crankshaft's early career but he looks a good outside chance for next Tuesday's final and a good bet here.
The son of former Australian Greyhound of the Year El Grand Senor and Hot Mint, Crankshaft impressed early in his career before being laid low for six weeks with kennel cough.
Since he returned in early May he has taken his record to three wins and four minor placings from nine starts.
"I was filthy when he got ill," Falls said. "He had trialled decent at Wentworth Park and was doing well.
"He's still improving and not yet back to where he was, but he's getting there.
"He is not overly strong but he has good mid-race speed. He's not a desperate railer but he uses the rail well (too). The greyhound in five (How Much) looks a danger here but Crankshaft can win."
The top pick for the series looks like Laverne, who jumps from box seven in the second heat (race four).
The latest promising hopeful from Spring Grove's Frank Hancock, Laverne has won six in a row over the 420m so far.
This is her debut over the 520m but with her devastating early speed she should again win here.
Iona Champion (race three), Top Crown (race eight) and race nine's Price Rise all look the best bets in three of the other heats.
Dave Irwin's Fancy Dancer has run well at Wentworth Park and looks the top pick in the sixth heat (race 10).
The final takes place next Tuesday.
For fields, form and expert picks, visit http://www.thedogs.com.au