In 2019 Sweet City Woman gave 77-year-old Penshurst trainer Ray Holt his biggest win in over four decades in the sport when she won the Goulburn Workers Club Fireball Final.
It had taken Holt 14 months to get Sweet City Woman to the races after she suffered two fractures of the metacarpal bone on the same leg, and then cracked a stopper bone, again on the same leg.
But patience was rewarded as she added her name to the list of speedsters to have won the Fireball.
The race was expected to be dominated by 2018 winner, and the track record holder, Victorian-trained Myrniong And All, but after missing the start slightly, he wasn’t able to recover in the 350m sprint.
The following year and it was the Donna Campbell-trained On The Rocks who led all the way in brilliant fashion to the win the Fireball Final, scoring by four and three quarter lengths in 19.56s, from the fast finishing Venom Cartel, with Cimarron Strip - owned by Shakeel Latimer whose dog Handsome Prince won the TAB Million Dollar Chase nine days earlier - a close up third.
In 2021, Father Rick claimed the Fireball for Ray and Sharron Webster despite being the fifth favourite when the field jumped.
The son of Fernando Bale speared to the front from Box 3, and after fending off a challenge from Sizzle Fly around the bend, he motored away from the chasing pack to claim a memorable win.
In 2022, Apollo Speed took out the feature race on an emotional day for Lisa and Dave Worthy. The pre-race favourite had been a dominant force at Goulburn for the entire year and was a deserving winner after reeling in the bold and brave Slingshot Rusty in the shadows of the post.
The Worthy kennel also prepared third placegetter Special Star and it capped a stellar 12-months at the track for the 2022 Trainers Of The Year.
12-months later and it was Anthony Azzopardi claiming the race for the second time with raging hot favourite, Packham Silk.
The nature of her narrow win (0.25 lengths) in a time of 19.84 even more impressive considering not much went right for the Victorian-based chaser.
“I was standing out on the balcony…and I saw the yellow ping [Armatree Cash] in front and I couldn’t see her anywhere and I thought we were gone to be honest, and she proved me wrong,” a relieved Azzopardi said post-race.
The daughter of Aston Dee Bee and Nangar Silk always loomed as the dog to beat ahead of the series and she confirmed her status as one of the most exciting young greyhounds in the country with her 11th win in just 16 race starts.
It was also her fourth straight victory at the track, and added another Fireball trophy to the Azzopardi mantlepiece after the Victorian claimed the race with Myrniong And All in 2018.
A happy Anthony Azzopardi with 2023 Fireball winner Packham Silk
Packham Silk all smiles after tasting victory in the Fireball
2022 Fireball winner Apollo Speed with Lisa and Dave Worthy
The final margin in the 2022 decider was 0.50 lengths between Apollo Speed (2) and Slingshot Rusty (8)
2021 Fireball winner Father Rick with Ray and Sharron Webster
2020 Winner - On The Rocks
2020 Winner - On The Rocks - Trainer Donna Campbell