Few greyhounds are able to break the 30 second barrier at their Wentworth Park 520m debut but the John Heard-trained juvenile Jack High joined that exclusive "club'' with a determined first-up win last Wednesday night.
Jack High, who has won three from four starts, came from third early and second approaching the home bend to win by five lengths in 29.98sec.
"She will be back racing at Wentworth Park on Wednesday night but she is eligible for the Ladbrokes National Futurity series so I am setting her for the heats on Friday, January 25,'' Heard said.
"But even at this stage I believe Jack High's long term future will be as a stayer.
"I won seven Wentworth Park 720m races with Gunnadoo Cove in 2016 and 2017, including a Wentworth Park Cup final, but Jack High is quicker than she was and I'm convinced she will run long distances even better.''
There are big reports about Jack High's litter brother and kennelmate Typhoon Tate, who will begin trialling up the straight next week and is scheduled to make his race debut over 388m at Gosford in late January.
THE Armatree prefix was prominent in greyhound racing in the 50s, 60s and 70s and is enjoying a resurgence with Armatree On Fire taking out Thursday's Ladbrokes Monthly Medal final at Maitland for Londonderry trainers Chris and Alan Proctor.
Armatree On Fire, "at 33kg built more like a dog than a bitch'' according to Alan Proctor, ran down hotpot Pandemonium to win the 400m final in a fast 22.22sec.
The Proctors also had the equally talented Armatree Kaycee, a brilliant heat winner, in the final.
The Proctor-trained duo are owned by Craig Fordham, who runs a mixed farm at Armatree, between Coonamble and Gilgandra.
Fordham's grandfather Dave settled the property after returning from service in World War II and began racing greyhounds as a hobby, just like his father Claude had done before him.
Dave Fordham raced 1950s champion Armatree Chief and had great success in the 60s with Armatree Seal, a prolific Wentworth and Harold Park winner for Kogarah trainer Bill Dogan.
Fordham also raced and sold Armatree's Idol, who became a top notch stayer for Sydney trainer Paul Cauchi, finishing third in the 1974 Harold Park Summer Cup behind Dottie Wilson and Miss High Lo, two of the sport's all-time great stayers.
"Craig Fordham, the owner of Armatree On Fire, phoned us with congratulations after the Maitland win but could not talk for too long because he had 600 sheep to shear!'' Alan Proctor said.
TERRY Landford, for the past 15 years the handler of trainer Phillip Cini's greyhounds, has passed away, aged 80.
Landford died peacefully on Friday, December 21 and his funeral will be held today (Monday) at 10am at Pine Grove Crematorium, Minchinbury.
Although not a licensed trainer, Landford was a popular and well-known figure at Wentworth Park and provincial race meetings through handling greyhounds like Metro Princess, Rocky Fever, Dina's Law and Manzanares on Cini's behalf.
"He was like a brother to me, I am going to miss him terribly,'' Cini said.
"Other trainers used to often ask me why I didn't handle my own dogs, and I would always say “take a look at the smile on Terry's face as he leads a greyhound onto the track how could I take that away from him?”''
HARDAWAY Titan, owner-trainer Ron Marsden's 39kg giant, maintained his unbeaten record by scoring over 440m against a strong lineup at Goulburn on Thursday.
Hardaway Titan has now won each of nine starts since opening his career at Bulli on October 27, and has scored over distances ranging from 350 to 450m.