Favourite Fantasy ready for Lismore Workers Cup
IT could be one of the best choices Bill Elson has ever made.
The Queensland trainer made a snap decision to enter his greyhound, Bill's Fantasy, in tomorrow's Group 2 Lismore Workers Club Cup (520m), despite zero preparation.
Now the sprinter is in contention to win the $40,000 top prize and earn Elson a dream Group race win after more than 30 years' training.
Sixty-seven-year-old Elson, whose charge will jump from box two in the final, is in a confident mood.
"I think he has a big chance," Elson said.
"I missed the chance to trial him at Lismore and I nearly didn't nominate him, but I said, 'oh, let's give it a go'.
"If he jumps well, he will be hard to beat."
Bill's Fantasy produced a superb 30.19-second run to claim victory in his last Friday's heat - his first visit to Lismore.
That result took his record to a solid 15 wins and nine placings from 44 starts.
It has been a good effort for a greyhound whose racing days were threatened by a chipped wrist bone early in his career.
Bill's Fantasy has a strong record from the outside but Elson thinks the draw could still be favourable.
"I think he is entitled to be favourite," Elson said.
"I have a good alley and he seems to like the track.
"If he misses the kick on the inside then he will get squashed in but he is handy from anywhere."
Elson works out of Churchable, about 65km out of Brisbane, and is assisted by wife Cynthia, who owns Bill's Fantasy.
"I like the thrill of winning a race," he said.
"Greyhounds are beautiful animals and they are just like pets to me.
"I think anyone can train greyhounds. There's no secret - it's just about keeping them sound and fit.
"It would definitely be nice to win this one."
Bill's Fantasy is currently favourite at $3.50 with TAB Fixed Odds to win the race, which is one of the biggest on the NSW greyhound racing circuit.
Fastest heat qualifier Birkdale Beauty ($4.50) has drawn box eight, while Northern Rivers hope Love Kills ($6) goes from box one.
Box seven's Yogi Blue ($6) is also a strong contender.
Tomorrow's race is one of 10, with action starting at 7.18pm.
Thank Dog It's Friday
The Group 2 Lismore Workers Club Cup is the latest leg of Greyhound Racing NSW's Thank Dog It's Friday racing series which showcases the best regional racing NSW has to offer in a primetime Friday night slot.
As part of the series, seven provincial tracks will stage their feature race meeting heats and finals on a Friday night.
A special VIP DogHouse section, featuring free food and drink for ticket-holders, will be on offer at Lismore.
For more information, including the chance to win VIP tickets for tomorrow's race meeting, visit http://www.thedogs.com.au or Greyhound Racing NSW's Facebook page.
Box draw for tomorrow's Lismore Cup (TAB Fixed Odds price brackets):
1. Love Kills ($6);
2. Bill's Fantasy ($3.50);
3. Mal Rose Hi ($13);
4. Walk With Faith ($8); 5. Outa Tempo ($8);
6. Fusaichi Khan ($8);
7. Yogi Blue ($6);
8. Birkdale Beauty ($4.50).
Reserves: Dulcie Dee, Intensive Storm.