UBET Origin Greyhound selectors will be forced to consider an emerging star before next week’s squad announcement, following Infrared Star’s convincing win in the Garrard’s Horse and Hound 5th Grade on Thursday.
It was the fourth win in the space of a month for the Joanne Price-trained dog, following his win in the Dave Brett Memorial Maiden on May 17.
Despite a sluggish getaway, Infrared Star found some luck in running on the first turn to settle second behind Hay Billy into the back straight. He then dashed clear on turning from home to hold off the fast-finishing Kulu Chance by 2.25L.
While the rough and tumble of the UBET Origin Greyhound Sprint might come too soon for 19-month old Infrared Star, the Emerging Origin race on the night looks a real possibility.
However, co-trainer Jason Aylward said they wouldn’t rush the dog by Bella Infrared.
“He’s still only young but he’s started to put it all together and he likes it here at Albion Park,” Aylward said.
“We’ll just get him through his grades … we’re thinking he might get out to the 600m.”
Price and Aylward train out of their base at Canungra and take turns attending the track, while the other stays home to take care of their growing kennel.
“We have about 10 in work but we keep a lot of older greyhounds on the property,” Aylward said.
The first feature race on the night was taken out by All About Tiger, who put himself into Origin contention with an all-the-way victory in the Mick Byrne Memorial for Brett Hazelgrove.
All About Tiger battled it out for favouritism with talented Tom Tzouvelis runner Maurice Minor, but showed the field a clean set of heels to win in 30 seconds flat.
Later that night, Champagne Sally won back-to-back Winter Chase Finals (710m), holding off Donny’s Beach and Gelantipy Gold to take the $36,500 feature.
The Ray Burman-trained bitch finished clocked 41.69sec, smashing her race time in 2017 by almost one-third of a second.
Champagne Sally has now amassed $128,000 in career earnings.