DALE Wright experienced every hobby trainer's dream when Chevy's Donut presented him with his first Wentworth Park winner last Wednesday night.
Sent out a raging hot $1.30 favourite on the strength of two successive wins at Richmond, Chevy's Donut bounded clear from box one and put a gap between her and her fifth grade rivals, scoring by 10 lengths in a handy 30.31sec.
"Before Wednesday I had trained a couple of second and third placegetters at Wentworth Park but to at last get a winner was a big thrill,'' said Wright, a plasterer from Williamtown.
"I train Chevy's Donut for Jody and Michael Manuel, who had previously given me a bitch called Half A Chevy to train and with whom I won four races in 2018 and earlier this year.
"It has taken me a while to get Chevy's Donut to the stage she is at but thankfully she is really firing now.
"I got involved with greyhounds through working as an apprentice to Troy Vella, a builder who has had a lot of success with his dogs. (Vella trained 2013 group 1 Vic Peters Classic winner Belfast Johnny).
"One day there was no gyprock work available for me so Troy suggested I come to his place and walk his greyhounds to justify my pay packet.
"That was around five years ago and that was all it took to fuel my love of greyhounds.
"My four-year-old son Nate was at Wenty with me last Wednesday because he had his own dog, Nate's Dream, which I also train, in an earlier race.
"He was terribly disappointed when his dog was unplaced but Chevy's Donut's win sparked him up.
"In fact he got so excited, Nate went over to the glass cabinet where all Zoom Top's trophies are housed, and wanted to open it and take one home.''
WHEN Victorian owner-trainer Gary Webb sent Hunter Valley trainer Jason Mackay a greyhound called Flying Apollo at the beginning of the year, he casually remarked: "Let me know if you want another dog that is a bit better.''
Considering Flying Apollo had got off to a flying start, scoring six wins and four seconds from 15 starts for Mackay, the NSW trainer asked about this "other dog.''
Mackay said: "Gary replied that the one he had in mind was five lengths quicker than Flying Apollo, so I told him to get him to me as soon as possible.''
That greyhound, Flying Bazza, made his Wentworth Park debut for Mackay last Wednesday night and won like a future Group performer, giving noted strong finisher Second Exit a big start and running him down by just under a length in a slick 29.87sec.
Flying Bazza has now had three wins and a second from four appearances for his new trainer, with Mackay saying: "His box manners aren't too flash but I was impressed with the way he handled himself going through the field on Wednesday night.
"I probably won't start him in the Black Top heats at Ladbrokes Gardens on August 23, but more likely to take him through his grades at Wenty and the provincials.''
RITZA Millie joined the rare brigade of greyhounds who make a winning return to the track after becoming mothers when she led throughout at Wentworth Park on Saturday night.
The Mark Gatt-trained Ritza Millie led throughout to win a 520m fifth grade by three lengths in a slick 29.88sec, only .15sec slower than her personal best Wenty figures posted on May 26 last year.
Since recording her personal best time of 29.73, Ritza Millie has given birth to a litter of puppies.
"She had been retired after suffering an injury but after she whelped her puppies around six months ago, we left her in the yard with them and she had been running around like a youngster,'' trainer Gatt's brother Daniel said.
"So we decided to put Ritza Millie back into work and she is going as well as ever.''