GO PAT GO proved the best of British as the local bitch landed Nathan Hunt his first major success as a trainer in winning the BGBF British Bred Maidens Final at Romford on Friday.

Hunt, who participated in the GBGB’s Apprenticeship scheme, took over the licence from Philip Simmonds in January and bred, trained and paraded the winner, a September 2017 daughter of Leamaneigh Turbo and Bang On Pippa for owner Dave Hawes.

After Go Pat Go had railed into the lead approaching the fourth bend and raced away to cross the line three and a half lengths clear of Queen Lilly (Liz McNair) in 24.21sec (+10), owner Hawes was full of praise for the handler.

“Nathan, and Phil before him, have done a great job with her,” he said. “They took her away to other tracks last year to give her experience and it’s really worked. She’s got great trackcraft and, once she had the rails in the final, you always felt she’d go well.”

Hunt himself was delighted to see the near three-year-old triumph in the £4,000 final having also won her heat triumph the week before and described the special feeling of having not just trained, but bred the winner in Go Pat Go.

“The litter was bred by myself and Luke (Staunton) out of one of dams in Bang On Pippa. It’s fantastic to watch them grow and we’ve got a couple of litters on the ground now. Our Oaks winner Wuheida recently had a litter of eight.

“We had four dogs and four bitches and, while Amy (Hawes, owner) plans to keep a couple, the others could be up for sale. We’ve also got a litter on the way by our Castell Henry. He’s a pet now, but we used him given his Monmore Puppy Derby win – the brood is Forest Apple and they’re due next month.

“It all hopefully means we can get involved and support these British-bred competitions. There’s good prize-money, especially run money, and Phil (Simmonds) has great facilities which gives us the opportunity to compete. It’s going well.”

Liz Mort, chair of the British Greyhound Breeders Forum (BGBF), said: “It was an excellent result in our first BGBF Maidens event – Go Pat Go was fastest in the heats and followed up with a really gutsy performance to take the trophy for breeder and trainer Nathan Hunt, and owner David Hawes.

“She didn’t get the best of starts this time, but hugged the rail to get through the traffic and overtake Roxys Florence at the final bend and ran on to win from Queen Lilly.

“It was good to see another member of this Bang On Pippa litter on the podium. Litter brother Rack Itup Turbo (now Aero Turbo) won our BGBF Derby Invitation at Sheffield in December for Nathan and Luke Staunton. The dam was bred by Lynn Short in Merthyr Tydfil, down the road from where Nathan used to live!

“The Romford competition was well supported. We decided to run it over two weeks as it’s a new competition and we wanted to be sure of filling it – in the event there were 27 entries, so next time it will be over three weeks!”