Duo race on in top gear
By VINCE HABERMANN
BUNDABERG trainer David Gear's purple patch of form continued as he claimed another double with in-form duo Shenanigans and Red Bow Tie.
But his wife Sharon and son Chris took care of his team of greyhounds for the day. Gear had softball commitments down the road at Frank Coulthard Complex as coach of United A grade women's team which won its major semi-final.
He did not even know their race results until late in the afternoon, but his polish was again evident as Shenanigans gave her fourth and fifth grade rivals a running lesson, powering to an 11.25-length victory, and Red Bow Tie accounted for a classy 550m Best 8 field.
Both were hot favourites and Shenanigans ($1.95) made it three wins, three seconds and one third from nine starts at Thabeban Park.
Red Bow Tie's record at the track now stands at 23 outings for 12 wins, eight seconds and one third, but he has returned to top form since Gear took over his preparation in a caretaker capacity while his trainer Ricky Hassall is on an overseas holidays,The big fawn flier has had five runs since joining Gear's kennels for three wins and a second.
One other trainer picked up a double on the program - John Turnbull, of Sheldon, who got the money with litter siblings Tomeels Scrap (maiden heat two) and Tomeels Tom (Wide Bay Mechanical Fifth Grade).
The latter, a white-hot favourite, paying $1.50, had been a run-away winner on debut on the track seven days earlier, and she again proved far superior for her rivals, saluting the judge 10.25 lengths in advance of runner-up Prince Cheval in a slick 26.69sec.
Tomeels Scrap ($1.80) was heavily backed at his first race appearance, and he too gave nothing else a chance, crossing the line seven lengths clear of Treetop Lover, with Phantom Calls a further four lengths away in third position.
Allen Martin-trained veteran Vintage Charger ($4.20) also burst back to his best to beat all comers at his 86th career race in the 460m Best 8, edging out Kay Jay ($3.40), with favourite Sovereign Red ($1.80) a handy third.
Half Class, which is owned and trained by breeder Gary Hick and is out of his former champion racer and distinguished brood bitch Shining Raider's 2004 litter by top sire Banker Hud, finally broke through in the first maiden heat.
Half Class ($4) had managed just four seconds from his first eight starts and while his time of 27.22sec was not flash, he improved to win by 4.25 lengths.
Fly Wright ($1.90), which won the Bundaberg Young Guns in November, was a popular winner in the Turner's Bakery Fifth Grade.