By Alex Nolan
QUEENSLAND selectors have injected some spice to their UBET Origin Greyhound squad, adding three runners to the squad of 25 ahead of Friday's final team announcement.
Initial squads were announced early in June at the UBET Queensland Winter Greyhound Carnival launch, aimed at giving punters plenty of time to decide who they think should be in each team.
Selena Zammit’s stayer Double Gee has been included following the black dog’s impressive win over NSW star Ebby Ripper over the 710m at Albion Park last Thursday.
Queensland selector Doug Lutherborrow said Double Gee’s win last week was indeed impressive, considering it was his first try over the trip.
“We feel this lightly-raced greyhound is about to go on an upward spiral. He broke the 620m track record at Casino, then beat home a top greyhound in Ebby Ripper at his first try over 710m,” he said.
“That is a feat that could not be ignored, and the selectors all agreed he needed to be included.”
Group 1 Garrard’s Winter Cup finalists Gunnadoo Rev and Codrington Kid have also been included in the squad, following their impressive runs in last week's heats.
“Codrington Kid has an impressive strike-rate over the 520m at Albion Park, is a reliable beginner, and has been in a rich vein of form,” Mr Lutherborrow said.
Trainer Alex Green welcomed the news, and said he couldn't wait to inform the owner.
"The owner was perplexed as to why he hadn't been included in the squad because he's been so consistent at Albion Park. She is battling illness and this will make her day," he said.
Mr Lutherborrow said Gunnadoo Rev deserved his place in the line up.
“He made the UBET Nationals Sprint final, which was won by Jury, at Albion Park last year. He then beat Jury home at just his third start back from a spell over the 520m at Albion Park in June, which suggests he has come back as good as ever," he said.
NSW selectors have added up-and-coming stayer Big Butters to their squad, after the Andrew Crouch-trained bitch broke the The Gardens 715m track record on 15 June.
Jumping from Box 5, Big Butters scooted to the early lead and never surrendered to win in a time of 41.54, lowering squad mate Ebby Ripper’s previous record by 0.16sec.
The UBET Origin Greyhound Series will be held on Thursday 12 July at the Brisbane Greyhound Racing Club, Albion Park.
The series will comprise the UBET Origin Sprint (520m), UBET Origin Distance (710m) and the UBET Origin Match Race (520m).
The Sprint and Distance races will feature four greyhounds from each state, with one from each state to contest the potentially series deciding match race.