MANGALORE greyhound trainer Gary Fahey provided the trifecta in the George & Eileen Johnston Puppy Championship final at Devonport on Tuesday – but not in the order that most punters wanted.
Soul Sister ($26.80), the outsider of Fahey’s three runners, won by a length from $3.50 favourite Rip And Tear, with Breaker’s Tip ($5.80) just over three lengths away in third place.
The three greyhounds are from the same litter (by Mogambo from Dennes Point) bred and raced by Fahey and his brother Greg, one of Tasmania’s best-known racing identities.
Gary Fahey said that he wasn’t totally shocked to see Soul Sister collect the $4000 first prize but his pre-race fancy was Rip And Tear “because he’s the best beginner.”
Rip And Tear did lead, as expected, but Soul Sister settled just behind him in second place and got a rails run on the home turn.
Soul Sister had won only one race previously but Fahey said that she had “improved out of sight in the past month”.
“The others were five or six lengths quicker but when we trialled them on Saturday morning she went as good as any,” he said.
Fahey said he was delighted to win a race named in honour of George and Eileen Johnston.
“George was one of the instigators behind me getting into the game,” he said. “It was back in the ’60s when I first got my love of greyhounds.”
“George was a great man, great trainer and had great dogs.”
— from Greg Mansfield (Examiner)