Mick targets Melbourne Cup with Talent

\"\"Caption: Mick Carter’s crack young chaser Special Talent (Photo: Jason McKeown Photography)

By Andrew Thomson 

Shepparton district trainer Mick Carter is setting up-and-coming sprinter Special Talent for a tilt at the Group One Melbourne Cup.

Special Talent stopped the clock at a slick 29.73 seconds at The Meadows recently to stamp himself a chaser to watch.

The 31kg white and black dog Fernando Bale-Kihael Madam has now won seven of his 16 starts with seven placings.

He caught the attention on his race debut, winning at Sandown as an extremely well supported $1.50 favourite in late October last year, running a slick 29.59.

Special Talent\’s bitch line goes back to the immortal race/broodbitch Floodgate, who had 94 starts for 25 wins and 33 placings.

Her litter brother Barwidgee Bill managed 115 starts, for 27 wins and 36 placings.

Floodgate went on to throw one of Victoria\’s greatest ever litters by Gun Law Osti, whose members saluted the judge 175 times.

Ashlee Jeannine managed  28 wins, Final Endeavour (24 wins, 31 placings), Flood Law (30 wins 30 placings from 110 starts), Jack Junior (31 wins, 18 placings), Pete\’s Bopss (31 wins), My Madigan (five wins), My Mutley (12 wins) and Watershed (14 wins).

Carter said his father Mal bought Special Talent as a pup and he wanted something that went back to trainer Peter Giles\’ broodbitch line.

\”It\’s been a consistent line for a long time. There were just four in the litter and someone was coming to look at them the next day,\” he said.

\”Dad said he was to put the money in the bank straight away and that was that.\”

Carter said Special Talent had always been a nice dog since he arrived at his place as a seven-month-old pup.

\”He\’s always been pretty special. He was a bit underdone the other night at The Meadows, but he still ran home all right, it was a bit of a surprise.

\”That was his first 500 metre run for six or seven months. He wasn\’t quite ready.

\”He\’s always been a quick animal. He was beating dogs when he was 14 months old and we were taking them to the races and backing them.\”

The Kialla-based trainer said his chaser did everything right in the kennels.

\”He\’s had a few problems, a touch of acidosis and split the webbing on a back foot.

\”First run back from injury he almost broke the record at Shepparton (21.49). He goes all right and he\’s still on the way up.\”

Special Talent has also run 25.03 at Shepparton and 23.69 at Bendigo.

Carter said when Special Talent won a maiden at Sandown he was only very young, just being 18 months although he had been right to go for a while.

\”We got an average of about $3 even though he started at $1.50. The secret is to tell no one and bet late. You have to be patient,\” he said.

\”He was trialling 25.00 dead at Shepparton but we thought we would get a much better price in town.

\”The Melbourne Cup preludes are his next target. He\’ll be competitive.

Carter said his kennel star moved around in the boxes pre-start a bit and due to the coronavirus restrictions could be in the boxes for between five seconds and 30 seconds.

\”He tries to time the start. Once he hits the grounds he\’s right. He takes a small step early and then takes off,\” he said.

\”We\’ll take him through the Melbourne Cup, see how he comes through that and then look at group races.

The trainer said he had half-a-dozen greyhounds in work and the same amount of pups coming through.

The 51-year-old has been training since he was 14 years old and cuts wood as a job.

\”I\’ve been on and off the dogs, but I always come back,\” he said.

\”It\’s nice to have a couple of good ones. I\’ve also got Music Event.\”

The explosive Music Event (32kg black dog, Lochinvar Marlow-Jazzy Lou) has had 16 starts for nine wins, clocking 23.50 at Bendigo, 24.92 at Shepparton and 29.77 at The Meadows.

\”I\’ve had a few in big races over the years, but had no luck. I\’ve been in it long enough to not get carried away,\” he said.

\”We could have gone to Sydney or Adelaide, but you have to give them to other people.

\”I would rather look after my dogs, know where they\’re at and set them for a target.\”




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