Grafton Cup winner Respectability (Michael Patterson) is one of many inter-state ‘raiders’ that will be chasing a Flying Amy final’s berth at Albion Park On Thursday night (Photo: Box 1 Photography)
By Racing Qld’s Jordan Gerrans
Tony Brett expects the Flying Amy series of 2022 will be the strongest field ever assembled for the Group 2 event in the history of dog racing in Queensland.
Several interstate dogs have run blistering trial times around Albion Park in recent weeks ahead of the heats of the $150,000 event on Thursday night.
Five heats stacked full of Queensland and interstate quality dogs will go around on Thursday before the Final seven days’ after that.
The heats have attracted more than 20 interstate dogs for the 2022 edition of the Flying Amy Classic – which is run for greyhounds who are 30 months old and younger.
Spring Patriot – who will jump from box three in the last heat on Thursday night – turned heads with a recent 29.70 second trial at Albion Park.
Premier NSW trainer Peter Lagogiane also made an early appearance at Albion Park with French Martini, who trialled in 29.75 seconds.
Rapaki Rocks – who has drawn the same heat as Spring Patriot – stopped the clock in 29.76 seconds recently as well, just weeks after claiming a Victorian Group 1.
Exciting Victorian sprinter Amron Boy was another stand out in 29.56 seconds and will jump from box two in the fifth race on Thursday night.
The leading Brisbane kennel of Brett will have Milligan and Litigate in Thursday’s heats and the respected conditioner thinks the contenders for the Flying Amy this year are as strong as they have ever been.
“It will be the best ever,” Brett, who won the race last in 2010, said.
“I have not seen for years and years a glut of dogs who can run the times that these dogs are running.
“The track at Albion Park at the moment has come back bigger and better following the rebuild from the flood I think, it is going nicely and they are running good times on it, as well as being safe.
“This might just be our best carnival in Brisbane and definitely our most competitive.
“The amount of dogs that are trialling fast from interstate is just crazy.”
Fellow Queensland trainer Matthew Heilbronn – who prepares star dog Dulceria – also recently made note of the strength of the interstate raiders coming to Brisbane, with the locals facing a tough task to keep the prizemoney in the Sunshine State during the 2022 TAB Queensland Winter Greyhound Racing Carnival.
Brett – who claimed the B.G.R.C. 50th Anniversary Trophy Final last week – is still confident about his own kennel’s hopes despite the intimidating visitors running speedy times.
With Milligan and Litigate to contest the Flying Amy heats this week, Just A Sort will now be targeted towards the Group 1 Brisbane Cup, while the Churchable-based team are also expecting a big contingent of dogs to land in their care from top Victorian trainer Jason Thompson.
“There is so many good dogs around, we are watching dogs trial 29.50 seconds and 29.60 and not just one stand out dog, there is handfuls of them,” Brett said.
“I do not have a dog that can run those sort of times but if you get a dog like Just A Sort who has good habits when he is on song and you can pinch these sort of races.
“We always find something that stand’s up over the carnival and we will have a few of Jason’s come up again to look after for the six weeks.”
Brett is also hopeful of seeing last year’s Rockhampton Cup champion Orchestrate getting back to his best.
“We are rushing against time to get him back from injury but where he is at – he is probably heading towards the Brisbane Cup again,” Brett said.
“He will make it to the race.”
The Group 1 Brisbane Cup will be run for a record $525,000.
It firmly entrenches it amongst the nation’s richest and most prestigious greyhound races.