By MIKE HILL
CONNECTIONS of Queensland\’s little marvel, Dam Slippery, are excitedly hoping for a double celebration in coming months after the dynamic sprinter was crowned Queensland Greyhound of the Year at a special awards night in Brisbane in late September.
Dam Slippery won the 2019 title from outstanding rivals Bago Bye Bye and Wise Misty at a scaled-down function at the Brisbane Greyhound Club\’s Albion Park complex and in doing so joined some of the greats of the sport.
The 2019 awards had been delayed six months after being postponed earlier in the year because of COVID-19.
In accepting the award, Gold Coast businessman and part-owner David Blench thanked his good mate, Sydney-based part-owner and breeder Michael Phillips, trainer Brett Hazelgrove, Ian and Kerry Hoggan, who reared the litter, and, of course, Dam Slippery.
\”Right from day one Brett said she was something special,\” said Blench.
\”She was a very consistent bitch and it\’s a privilege to own her.
\”Michael and I have been breeding for many years and we have been blessed with several outstanding sprinters in recent times.
\”We are now excitedly waiting for Dam Slippery to come on season. We can\’t wait for her first litter.\”
He said the bitch\’s pink card had been lodged and he was expecting her to come on season any day. He admitted it was now a waiting game.
Blench said they had a couple of Kinloch Brae straws, but they were still undecided on a likely match for the bitch\’s first litter.
Dam Slippery became Queensland\’s pin-up girl during last year\’s GOTY function at Brisbane\’s Kedron Wavell Services Club.
The awards ceremony had been halted to allow the more than 200 guests to watch live on the big screen the talented sprinter brilliantly win the Group 2 Richmond Oaks.
Cheers erupted as she crossed the line victorious and similar sounds reverberated at Albion Park last month after she was given the top gong.
Dam Slippery was retired earlier this year due to a series of injuries after a stunning 18 months on the track that included victories against some of the best sprinters in the country.
Both Blench and Hazelgrove singled out Dam Slippery\’s success at Richmond and her all-the-way victory in the State Of Origin at Albion Park, in which she beat two Million Dollar Chase winners – Mystic Riot and Good Odds Harada – as her top performances.
\”They were her two standout wins for me,\” said Hazelgrove.
He admitted Dam Slippery\’s State Of Origin victory over the NSW stars was a very emotional night.
\”I achieved a lot with her and we travelled a lot of miles,\” Hazelgrove said.
\”She\’s the best dog I\’ve trained so far, although I\’ve had some good dogs. She was a real champ.
\”Like her mum, she\’s a tiny bitch but they both had big motors.\”
Hazelgrove said despite her small size – Dam Slippery only ever raced once over 25kgs – she was \’a true professional race dog\’.
The exceptionally well-bred black bitch (Dyna Double One-Go Mini Mouse) ended her wonderful career with 22 wins and 18 placings from 54 starts and prizemoney totalling $200,983.
As well as her Richmond Oaks victory, Dam Slippery ran a close second to Circle Of Dreams in both the Group 1 National Futurity (520m) at Wentworth Park and the G2 Bogie Leigh Futurity (520m) at Albion Park and was third to Quara\’s Flick in the G3 Townsville Cup (498m).
Caption: Part owner of Dam Slippery, David Blench, above left, and trainer Brett Hazelgrove at the awards night. (Photo: Box 1 Photography)