Ladbrokes Peter Mosman Opal

Little Zephyr Back In Town Chasing An Opal

By Jeff Collerson
Little Zephyr will be auditioning for a crack at next week's group 1 Peter Mosman Opal heats when she contests Saturday night's Ladbrokes Easy Form Stakes, a 520m fifth grade at Wentworth Park.

Trained by Jim Gallaway at Warragai Creek, near Grafton, Little Zephyr has drawn ideally in box one and is chasing her sixth win in 15 starts.

She finished down the course at her sole Wentworth Park outing on April 29 in the TAB Million Dollar Chase semi-finals, but Gallaway revealed she had trialled well before that race.

"I gave her a solo trial over 520m and she clocked 30 seconds flat but in the race she got jammed up early and lost all chance,'' Gallaway said.

"She has finished second at two of her past four starts but has drawn box eight each time and she is desperate for an inside box.

"So box one on Saturday suits perfectly and as long as they leave her alone for the first few strides so she can gather momentum she should be hard to beat.

"Little Zephyr has lost a bit of her early speed but is coming home more strongly these days.''

Also on trial for a start in the July 2 Peter Mosman Opal heats at Wentworth Park is Magic Flame, who is well positioned in box two in Saturday night's top grade 520m event, the Rexy's Lost Please Find Him Cup.

Magic Flame has been among the most improved greyhounds of 2022 and has compiled a remarkably consistent Wentworth Park record of 17 starts for six wins, six seconds and two thirds.

But while he is keen to see Magic Flame compete against her own age and sex in the Peter Mosman Opal heats, trainer Michael Ivers is far from confident about her prospects on Saturday.

"She is well drawn but Magic Flame is handy without being top class and I don't think she can beat the top notch lineup she faces on Saturday.

"My concern is that she has not put time on the board as her fastest Wentworth Park figures are 29.96, just breaking the 30sec barrier, and realistically she has to find three tenths of a second to become a top notcher.

"But she is from a fantastic dam line and I am excited about breeding a litter or two from her when she retires.''

Summer Key, who has won twice at Wentworth Park but has been runner-up on an exasperating five occasions, gets her chance on Saturday when she drops to fifth grade in the 520m Ladbroke It! Stakes.

Summer Key has been run down near the finish by Doonan and by Irinka Molly in tougher races at her past two Wentworth Park outings but is nicely placed in box three on Saturday.

Trainer Andrew Rowe said: "If she can get around the first turn a length in front it will make all the difference.

"Summer Key goes very quick up the back straight but has been run down at her past two starts after having to work hard to reach the lead.

"Her past three races have been in top or fourth grade company so getting back into fifth grade should help her on Saturday.''

There are some great clashes looming on Saturday beginning with fastest heat winner It's Got Legs (box two) taking on Where's Bonbon (box seven), who posted the quickest first split in the heats, in the 520m GBOTA Welcome Maiden Final.

Showman Jack, who took ground off Where's Bonbon at the finish of their heat, adds spice to the contest from box three.

Equally enthralling should be the duel between up and coming stayers Tiger Jack (box four) and Tania Keeping (box seven) with established stars Super Estrella (box six) and Sound Of Silence (box eight) in the top grade 720m event.

Best Bet Little Zephyr (race 8)

Best Value Summer Key (race 2)

Quaddie race 5 - 3, 7

Race 6 - 1, 2, 7

Race 7 - 4, 6, 8

Race 8 - 1, 2, 4

$20 for 37.03%