VICTORIANS Peter and Peta Craig have been breeding thoroughbreds and greyhounds for 30 years with good success.

Peta admitted to her husband after their home-bred Wow She’s Fast (My Bro Fabio-Fair Of Face by Barcia Bale) won the inaugural running of The Phoenix at The Meadows she was disappointed they  had not retained the magnificent bitch for themselves.

The Craigs sold three of the litter to Greg Sprod and he and the Greenough family took the bitch to the winner’s first prize in The Phoenix of $750,000.

But anyone breeding such a successful greyhound as Wow She’s Fast has a huge degree of satisfaction to go with such success. The Craigs are no different.

Peter, president of the National Coursing Association, went against popular opinion to breed Wow She’s Fast.

“A lot of people said don’t use My Bro Fabio,” Peter said. A student of bloodlines for three decades, Peter took no notice and the result is a fabulously in-bred pedigree and a litter full of stars.

They are in-bred 3×3 to half-relations Primo Uno and Bella Portrait, and hugely in-bred 3x4x3 to the litter brothers Where’s Pedro and Hallucinate and their half-brother Pure Octane.

Such intense in-breeding often can reduce the size of any offspring, but not in the case of Wow She’s Fast who races at 31 kilos.

The litter contained three dogs and five bitches and turns just two this month.

Peter started with high-class bitch Fair Of Face (Barcia Bale-Catch Up Sunday), who had won 14 races, earned $39,000 and was a Sandown winner and finalist in the Group 2 Laurels. It stamped her quality because the Laurels included such luminaries as Up Hill Jill and Striker Light.

The Craigs first got into the damline some years ago.

“I was running the local golf club and our head chef, Nathan Tracey, was involved in horses,” said Peter. “He knew Pat Sofia who had bred a few litters and Nathan suggest we get a dog together.”

They bought a Pure Octane-Bella Portrait bitch they would call Catch Up Sunday.

Bella Portrait would go on to produce a 2012 litter by Fabregas which included Big Ticket (24 wins, $95,000) three times Group placed and a Group 1 finalist.

“Catch Up Sunday was a handy little bitch, won to 600 metres at The Meadows and made a Cranbourne Cup final,” Peter said. “She was not that big, not speedy early, but had a lot of strength.”

Peter put Catch Up Sunday to El Grand Senor and got a very nice bitch called Full Of Grace (10 wins, $24,000) and Archibald Prize (10 wins, $16,000).

Because of Peter’s close association with coursing, he gave Full Of Grace her opportunity at Lang Lang and she was dominant winning the Waterloo Cup and being named coursing greyhound of the year.

He put Catch Up Sunday to Barcia Bale next and got two pups, Fair Of Face and Dynamic Rainbow (7 wins, $14,000).

“Barcia Bale had only just gone to stud and was at a service fee of $2000,” Peter said. “At the time, the Wheeler stud dogs had a lot of doubt about them being successful. But I had no worries about Barcia Bale.

“The Portrait line had always crossed well with the Head Honcho sireline, so I went that way.

“Fair Of Face was always very good right from the start. We had a big go at her in a Vic Breeders maiden heat at Horsham. She won and was a certainty beaten in the final.

“When she got into the Laurels, I knew she would make the race for Up Hill Jill and take care of Striker Light and that’s what happened. It was the best Laurels ever run.”

Fair Of Face had three falls in her career. She also hit her head on the boxes and ended up with a scar between her eyes. The third fall ended her race career.

Peter first put her to Fernando Bale and the litter includes Mow A Meadow (seven wins, $21,000) and five other smart winners. Peter was a little disappointed.

“For her second litter I did a lot of study on the pedigree and came up with My Bro Fabio,” Peter said. “I just loved the cross. It gives us more strength, everything is balanced, the half-relations, and the two brothers and half-brother. I loved the cross.”

Greg Sprod bought three of the litter for $8500, sent them to Marty Hallinans to rear and then on to Kel Greenough to sort out. Wow She’s Fast is the rest of the story.

Of the rest of the litter, Peter had trouble getting them educated because of the Covid influence and the squeeze on education tracks in Victoria. “One of the boys went two 100ths outside the Lang Lang track record as a puppy.”

For Fair Of Face’s next litter, Peter approached Jamie and Brooke Ennis to buy another straw for My Bro Fabio, but he did it long before Wow She’s Fast had emerged.

“I saw Brooke at Sandown one night and she said she and Jamie were keeping those they had left,” Peter said. “After Wow She’s Fast came out and went 29.09, the fastest even maiden win at Sandown, I was able to get another straw.

“Brooke and Jamie were really good about it.”

In his 30 years breeding thoroughbreds and greyhounds, Peter Craig has done his study on both equine and canine bloodlines.

“Greyhounds are a lot more in-bred,” he said. “There is not the diversity of bloodlines that horses have available.

“With my horse breeding I try to in-breed to a damline, but the difficulty there is that a mare has only one foal. Horses have a bigger gene pool.”

Not long after Wow She’s Fast won The Phoenix, Peter was confronted with the fact her litter sister In Blue Jeans broke a toe at her first race start and not long after came on season.

Peter tossed up with breeding her straight away to continue the successful trend legend Rod Deakin used many years ago by mating a young bitch in a bid to skip a generation.