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BRITISH BREEDERS STAKES - NOTTINGHAM 500m (£8,000)

When you look back at the history books they will show Eden The Kid was the winner of the 2015 £8,000 British Breeders' Stake at Nottingham. They will not tell you how this sensational greyhound managed to do it, though. I will try and do this great greyhound justice now and tell the story of how he pulled off this incredible feat.

 

It was a night of shocks at Nottingham with odds-on favourites getting turned over at will. Surely 2-7 favourite Eden The Kid would not be one of them was the thought of many greyhound fans. The lids flew open and Eden The Kid stumbled badly and while the rest of the finalists headed by Damson Jam and Honest John raced to the corner and Eden The Kid had a mountain to climb. Dogs can't usually get the start so badly wrong and come back to win category one competitions, but Eden The Kid is a son of the great Westmead Hawk and he set about pulling off the almost impossible. He railed around the first-bend like a cat but down the back he showed incredible track craft to move out wide to tackle Honest John and Damson Jam. Approaching the third-bend he showed sensational pace and surged past good greyhounds with ease. Once he was in front it was all over and he raced clear to record one of the most sensational victories we have ever seen beating Honest John 4.75L in 29.59 +40. He returned the 2-7 favourites and become the second shortest price winner ever behind one of the all time greats Staplers Jo who won this race at 1-5 back in 1995. 

 

This performance is the closest I've ever seen to the great Westmead Hawk. His son showed all the key attributes the double Derby champion had and quite literally it was just like watching Westmead Hawk back on a track. Some people will say question the quality of the final but Honest John is a very good greyhound and he was very unlucky in the Ladbrokes Puppy Derby at Monmore and that race is widely accepted to be the number one puppy race in the calendar. He finished runner-up in that massive race behind Glenpadden Rock after being impeded and he is a top-class greyhound. Fabulous Expert won the £15,000 to-the-winner Swindon Produce Stakes beating the highly rated Romany Rouge but she could only manage 4th here, it gives a big indication that this final was certainly not lacking in quality some would have you believe.

 

The Derby finalist and Wimbledon track-record holder Eden The Kid marched through this competition unbeaten and his rise from Handicap racer at Newcastle to Category One winner is an incredible story. His big target will be the Derby back at Wimbledon in 2016 and on this evidence this outstanding British Bred greyhound could give them all a run for their money.

 

Not only was it £8,000 for the winner but the winning breeder Craig Dawson receives £1,000 and you have to credit Craig Dawson because he's bred a greyhound that possesses real star quality.

 

Rab McNair on Sky Sports after the race

 

"I was absolutely devastated when the traps opened and at the first-bend I thought he could not win it from there, it is impossible. His back straight pace and everything about this greyhound is incredible, he is a greyhound. I'm actually shaking and I'm not kidding you on there was more pressure on us here to win this than at Wimbledon in the Derby final. He was expected to win it and he did but he gave us a few heart stopping moments along the way".

 

SUPPORTING CARD

 

It was the Eden The Kid show but away from the big final there was an exceptional supporting card. The £2,000 to-the-winner Truframe British Bred Oaks Trophy over 500m was won in a thrilling finish by Fabulous Sully. She got the vote in a photo-finish by a Short-Head over Fabulous Flair in 30.21 +40. This was the first victory for Fabulous Sully and what a way for her to open her account. Dave Firmager incredibly bred four of the finalists and Fabulous Sonia and Fabulous Rose will have better nights and look very much like young greyhounds on the rise. Russanda Blue was sent off at odds-on but she could only manage 3rd. I've no doubt we will be hearing a lot more about Elaine Parker's Russanda Blue in the coming weeks and months.

 

We witnessed one of the most exciting sprint races of the year when Target Harris took on Ballybee Brewery. It was Hayley Keightley's Target Harris who emerged victorious by a Short-Head in 17.85 +10. Next stop the National Sprint at Nottingham and if this race is anything to go by we are all in for a thriller.

 

Oneco Melissa put in a big performance in the 680m contest for Charlie Lister OBE. On a night like this it was probably overshadowed but this was right out the top draw, she ran a top quality field in to the ground to score by 5.5L in 41.22 +20. That is the third fastest time ever over the distance. Watch out for Oneco Melissa because there looks to be a lot more to come from this outstanding staying prospect.