Multiple Group winner Knight Sprite is capable of overcoming a tricky box draw and claiming Tuesday’s mouth-watering Goulburn Workers Club Cup (440m) decider.
That is the verdict from his owner-trainer Gayle Masterson ahead of the high-calibre $10,000-to-the-winner decider (race seven).
Knight Sprite (box four, pictured) made his first visit to Goulburn for last Tuesday’s heats but he once again underlined his class by zooming home in an impressive 24.84 from box eight.
He has won three times and placed once in six previous starts wearing the blue rug and Masterson is confident her greyhound can score another feature race title here.
“The draw is good for him,” she said. “Box four has never been a problem for him and the straight run to the bend over the 440 metres at Goulburn suits him.
“This is an open race but if he jumps in front, they’ll have a job to catch him.”
A win in the final would further improve Knight Sprite’s already superb year, which has seen him claim two Group 2 titles and extend his prize money earnings beyond the $200,000 mark.
He has extended his record to a consistent 29 wins and 24 minor placings from 69 starts and with one win and three minor placings in his last four starts is still racing well.
Knight Sprite has been Masterson’s finest greyhound in more than three decades’ involvement with the sport and the Hunter Valley owner-trainer is enjoying every minute of the journey.
“I still pinch myself even now,” she said. “I just try and enjoy every race as know it will be a long time before I get another one as good as him – if I ever do.
“I was hoping to take him to the Melbourne Cup which would have been a dream but he wasn’t quite right. This would be a lovely race to win, though.
“He’s such a consistent greyhound and I’m always optimistic when he makes these finals.”
Knight Sprite will have to overcome last year’s winner and track record holder Let It Develop (box five), who is one of three hopefuls from the gun Jodie Lord kennel.
A winner of this year’s $75,000-to-the-winner Group 1 Dapto Megastar, Let It Develop was the fastest heat qualifier in 24.70 and does his best work from the middle boxes.
Clock’s Ticking, a recent Group 1 Vic Peters Classic finalist, chased Let It Develop home hard and looks a decent each-way chance in box three.
Mark Gatt is one of NSW’s leading trainers and his greyhound Takedown (box eight) also looks a tempting value chance from the outside.
In other Goulburn Tuesday action, Extreme Chance (box eight) can salute in the Palmerbet Fireball Final (race five, 350m).
The Lorraine Roy-trained greyhound has won three of his last four starts and clocked an impressive 19.95 victory in last week’s heats.
Hardaway Highway (box seven) has been one of NSW’s most consistent greyhounds of 2016 and can win the Mellcat Cleaning Stakes (race six, 350m).
The Ron Marsden-trained speedster suffered a rare failure last week but has won four of his last six visits to Goulburn and has saluted on four of his five starts from box seven.
Former Victorian Myrniong Smello (box four), now in the gun NSW kennel of Jodie Lord, placed in his first two starts and can go one better with victory in the Luke Foley Appreciation Maiden Stakes (race two, 440m).
In-form Quoted Dynasty (box four) looks capable of scoring a fourth consecutive victory in the final 5th grade Goulburn Workers Cup (440m, race 11).