Recap of American Greyhound Derby Action...
By: Clint Locklear
The American Derby is underway for the first time since the closure of Twin River Casino and dog track in Rhode Island. Mardi Gras is the fourth different venue to hold the event in its long and colorful history. The first of two finals will be held Friday night, March 30th. Here's what happened Monday night:
First round action carried all the excitement one could imagine. The D.Q. Williams Kennel got things started off with a win in the first qualifying race of the evening with Show You Want. The daughter of Ra Blazer rushed to a lead down the front stretch and never looked back, crossing the wire in a time of 37.85. Flying Carne followed her all the way around the track to finish second beaten by three lengths. It was another two lengths back to the favorite Kiowa Mad Fly, who primarily ran an even race to finish third and rounded out $181.60 trifecta. Show You Want paid $14.40 to those backing her with win wagers, $8.20 to place and $3.60 to show. Flying Carne paid $9.80 and $3.60 completing a $108.30 perfecta. Kiowa Mad Fly paid $2.60 to show.
The D.Q. Williams kennel kept the ball rolling in the following race with the explosive Wannadobadthings. The son of Dragon Fire, who recently switched from the marathon course for this event, got involved early settling just off the pace of San Tan Nitrogen. Nitrogen looked strong until the final turn before being inhaled by Roc A By Spinoff. Spinoff's lead was short-lived as Wannadobadthings was consistently gaining ground on these two throughout and he snatched the lead turning for home before opening up for a three and half length score. Wannadobadthings paid $11.20, $5.40, and $3.60. Roc a By Spinoff was the lukewarm favorite at post time and paid $5.20, $3.60. A winning perfecta ticket was worth $68.10. San Tan Nitrogen held third and paid $6.60. Nitrogen helped set off a healthy $225.20 trifecta. Second choice Smoked Em was never involved and finished seventh. Time for the race was a sharp 37.44.
The third qualifying event was easily oddest race of the night, even a bit controversial. Ja's Jewel jumped out to a quick lead followed by heavy long shot Bella Lipsticgal. Behind those two, Bm Murphy and Goodlucksterling ran as a tandem going into the first turn when all of a sudden Murphy decided to take a right turn taking Sterling with her. Bettors who backed these two were disappointed as they ended up just a few feet from the outside fence. Midway down the backstretch, Murphy and Sterling had driven their way back into contention. To everyone's surprise, they overtook the frontrunners. Bm Murphy kept her advantage over Goodlucksterling all the way to the wire. Seen as an obvious interference on Murphy's part by some, there's no been no word yet from the judges or the track concerning a ruling of reckless racing. Murphy fresh off making the Finals of the Palm Beach Derby stopped the clock in a time of 37.80. The daughter of Flying Penske lit up the tote board paying a generous $31.40, $13.20, and $9.00. The wagering favorite Goodlucksterling, who was a neck short of giving D.Q. Williams three straight winners, paid $3.00 and $2.80 and was a part of the $102.60 perfecta. Ja's Jewel held third and paid $6.20 show and completed a $464.20 trifecta. Second choice Tb's Final Stand did not get away well and was hampered early finishing seventh. BM Murphy races for the Brindle Kennel.
The fourth qualifying event was won by the young phenomenon, Kelsos Guardian who put on a display clocking in with a time of 37.28, eight and a half lengths ahead of the runner up Fulton. It was the fastest time of the night and the most impressive. Kelsos Guardian didn't break on top, but quickly rushed to the lead coming out of the first turn. Never in doubt, the son of Kelsos Fusileer rewarded his backers paying $7.20, 5.20, and $3.00. Fulton, paying $9.20 and $5.20, was well clear of third place finisher Ww's Rochelle, who was a distant twelve lengths from the winner in what was a merry-go-round type race for the top three. Rochelle paid $4.00 to show. The perfecta paid $82.20 and the winning trifecta combination was worth $170.40.
In the fifth qualifying event, Jax Wanda Rinn gave a solid front running effort. She jumped out to an early lead and fought off challengers en route to a four length score against one of the deepest fields of the evening. The daughter of Flying Penske, competing for the Valor Racing Kennel fell short on making the World Classic Final but positioned herself well to make the Finals of this event. Sent off a slight 3/1 favorite over Wheeling track record holder, Cry Exxon, Wanda paid $8.80, $4.80, $4.20. Long shot Samboya's Dream shrugged off early trouble to be second paying $16.60 and $7.40 and anchored a perfecta return of $86.10. Race favorite Cry Exxon, in his third race over the strip, was unable to find the winner's circle. He was six and a half lengths back from the winner and paid $3.60 to show. Casper Van Dien was a half length back in fourth. Casper is in his third stakes event in four months. The trifecta paid $147.
The last event of the night was supposed to be all about Caspian's Place but it was a black Trent Lee female who stole the show. As Kelsos Fabulous broke out on top to a sizable lead, most everyone thought she'd come back to Caspian's Place late in the race, but it never happened. Fabulous romped home by nine. The winning time was a swift 37.48 and the winner paid a generous $13.40, $3.40, and $3.00. Caspian's Place paid $3.60, $2.40 and capped a $75.30 perfecta. Jax Stanley Cup tracked the leader early but faded to third paying $3.20 to show and rounded out a $159.40 trifecta. J.E. O'Donnell Kennel and owner John Kelly teamed up for their second qualifying round winner. They have to be pleased with their position going into the second round this coming Friday.