Tonk times Cup run to perfection

\"\"Caption: Perth Cup presentation – Dennis O’Brien (Greyhounds WA) with Correy Grenfell (trainer) and Tiggerlong Tonk

 WA wrap by James Broadhurst

Two out of three isn’t bad, in fact it’s very good as far as Correy Grenfell is concerned.

The Victorian-based trainer has won two of the past three Perth Cups … although he had to wait until the very final stride to claim victory with Tiggerlong Tonk in the latest version of WA’s richest race in mid-April.

Tiggerlong Tonk overpowered the leading Canya Cruise in the shadows of the post to finally secure his first Group 1 trophy in his tenth attempt at that level.

Canya Cruise showed early burn out of the boxes to cross the field from box six and grab the frontrunner’s position while Tiggerlong Tonk pushed through early traffic to position up a couple of lengths behind the leader.

Tiggerlong Tonk was always within striking range of the lead, but couldn’t make headway in the back straight as Canya Cruise continued to set a demanding pace.

Canya Cruise looked the winner at the top of the home straight, but in the last 50m Tiggerlong Tonk made his move and came with an irresistible run.

Tiggerlong Tonk lunged ahead on the line to steal the race in 29.76.

“I didn’t know which way it went, but I was hoping that the result would go our way. It’s a relief,” an emotional Grenfell said after the race.

“(The Group 1 win was) a long time coming. Just shows how hard they are to win.”

Grenfell also paid tribute to Kira Withers, who had been Tiggerlong Tonk’s de-facto trainer for most of his duration in WA.

It was Grenfell’s second Perth Cup trophy after he won in 2019 with Orson Allen.

The result also completed a Perth Cup hat-trick for the Vics following Simon Told Helen’s success in the 2020 edition.

While the Perth Cup was one of the closest ever staged, the Galaxy (715m) was anything but as Zack Monelli flexed on his rivals with a dominant four-length victory.

Zack did as he does: he jumped to the front and didn’t look back.

The David Hobby-trained star gave his rivals no chance as he led all-the-way and rattled across the finish line to score in 41.54.

The victory not only retained Zack Monelli’s undefeated record over the journey, but completed his incredible conversion into one of the nation’s best stayers.

Shortly after his narrow runner-up placing in last year’s Perth Cup the greyhound suffered a serious hock injury.

Fortunately he was able to the return to the track in November and he made the finals of the Sale Cup, Zoom Top and Fanta Bale Super Stayer’s Cup prior to his Galaxy triumph.

Zack Monelli is now likely to be targeted at the Sandown Cup in May.

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