Caption: Owner Trevor Cuttriss and trainer David Crosswell after Classy Lady’s victory in the J.G. Nelson Cup Division 1 at Launceston.

Tasmanian News With Brennan Ryan

HALL of Fame trainer David Crosswell is certainly in the middle of a ‘lucky’ golden run.

The Longford-based Crosswell threatens with thoughts of retiring from training greyhounds, but ‘lady luck’ may have stepped in to change that idea after the trainer and his team’s great form during the Tasmanian Winter Carnival.

It all began with the recent J.G. (Jack) Nelson Cup Division 1 Final at Launceston where Crosswell prepared four of the eight runners in the field.

Not only did the race favourite Classy Lady get the job done in great style, leading virtually all the way from box three, but Team Crosswell also prepared the second, third and fourth placegetters in the top-graded feature.

Vintage Fame, Quick Joey Small and Highland Fame filled the minor placings.

Owner Trevor Cuttriss and David Crosswell have formed a winning combination with Classy Lady, a daughter of Fernando Bale and Amity Class, winning 17 races and placing 14 times from 56 career appearances so far.

Classy Lady has a ‘priceless’ value for Cuttriss when she heads for the breeding barn and hopefully her racing ability transfers well to her future offspring.

Crosswell has a real connection to all runners in that race, as he bred them from She’s All Class.

Victory in the Division 1 Nelson Cup was   Crosswell’s third win in the feature following on from previous winners Bronko Pete (Division 2 – 2010) and She’s All Class (Division 1 – 2011).

The ‘luck’ continued for Team Crosswell on July 18 when the Steve Dome-owned Highland Wonder broke through for a maiden victory over the 720-metre staying trip, taking out the LGRC Distance Championship Final.

He may be in his training ‘twilight years’ but  Crosswell continues to show his prowess in the local ranks, proving his kennel still is a force to be reckoned with.

New race name to honour legend

Tasmanian racing industry legend Gary Sutton will receive recognition when the Tasmanian Breeders Classic is to be renamed for the 2022/2023 season.

Tasracing, along with the local Greyhound Reference Group (GRG), have released details of the new race name to honour the former broadcaster following recommendations from the greyhound racing industry.

Gary Sutton gave more than four decades of commitment to the local sport.

The LGRC Tasmanian Breeders Classic for Tasbred greyhounds – run in early September – will be known as the Gary Sutton Tasmanian Breeders Classic (515m).

Born at Ulverstone in 1945, Gary Lindsay Sutton had no background in racing until friend John Doherty encouraged him to come up into the caller’s box at the Devonport greyhounds.

Doherty gave calling away in the 1963-64 season and an untrained Gary Sutton was offered the position of racecaller, a role that extended right up until 1994.

Sutton was one of the very few who had called the Devonport dogs since the track was opened in the early 50’s at the showgrounds.

The late Wally Bond was the first (also club secretary, chief steward etc), Bill ‘Hillbilly’ Wilson and John Doherty followed and then came Sutton.

Sutton had a couple of years off when the local Greyhound Racing Board appointed its own callers but agreed to come back when it was obvious Devonport would have to lose the Thursday night slot because of the lack of a caller.

Another major influence on his career in greyhound racing came through his wife Cheryl.

Cheryl (nee Ivory) came from a famous family of local greyhound trainers. Her parents, Reg and Aileen Ivory, were highly respected industry participants as breeders, trainers and then later with their volunteer work to assist the Devonport club.

Sutton called his first Devonport Cup (now Devonport Chase) back in 1965 when Bill Bonola’s Domenic’s Black won the race. He called every Devnport Cup until a  two-year break in 1981.

In 1985 Gary was the first person to call the Hobart Thousand, Launceston Cup and Devonport Chase all in the one racing season.

He also called the great Brother Fox to victory in the 1985 Hobart Thousand, with that famous expression ‘tallyho, the Fox is away’ still  remembered.

Cheryl and Gary trained a steady stream of winners, including the likes of Full Price, Dainty Discount and Razarkar Doll.

The best Sutton-trained chaser arguably was 40-time winner Pippen.

Heats of the Gary Sutton Tasmanian Breeders Classic series will be held on September 9, with the semis on September 19 and the final on September 26.

Curator calls time on career

After more than 30 years as greyhound track curator in Launceston, respected industry figure Ian Thomas is set to call time on his career.

Ian is highly regarded for the integrity and professionalism he provides to the track curator role.

While involved in the training of greyhounds, Ian was offered the curator job by chance at the White City track.

I was leaving my previous job at the time and the LGRC offered me the track curator position,” he said. “It meant being totally responsible for the track and surface, kennels, grounds and gardens around the White City complex.”

During the White City era, Ian says the best greyhound he saw at the track was Fine Horizon.

Together Ian and his wife Eileen have prepared a small but strong team of chasers, including such stars as Damek (23 wins), Collica (15 wins), Night Tremors (12 wins) and Cointreau Cap (12 wins).

The LGRC shifted to its new facilities from the White City complex to the Mowbray Racing Centre in December 2004. Ian has overseen track maintenance there for 18 years.

Ian says the track record run set by Xylia Allen in winning the 2013 Launceston Cup ranked high among the finest performances he has witnessed.