McGovern aims to conquer decade long drought


Owen McGovern will be chasing his first city win in a decade tomorrow night when Direct Deal and Fearless Flyer line up in the night’s opening event.

The Rosedale trainer completed a winning double with the pair in heats of the series last Sunday.

“It was a great day. It was good for us and good for the owners,” said McGovern.

Fearless Flyer was the fastest qualifier with a time of 29.60. The youngster is owned by the Massive Racing Syndicate who are based in Hurlstone Park, New South Wales.

“They sent him down as they thought the racing would suit him more down here. He’s been here a long time and initially had trouble running around a bend – with the assistance of Des Fegan and Nev Martin we were able to get him right.”

The relationship between McGovern and the syndicate began when he purchased a greyhound named Yellowrock Magic from them in 2013.

“We bought him off Rob Whitton (Massive Racing syndicate manager) – he ended up being a really good sprinter for us. Last year Rob rang me out of the blue and asked if I’d be interested in training Fearless Flyer.”

McGovern grew up around greyhounds as his father and uncles were involved. He spent most of his working life working as a linesman however is now retired and has turned his attention to training greyhounds with the help of his family.

“We rent out a few houses and train dogs on the side. It’s a family thing – my partner Jessica, my kids and Brett Tilley all help out. We all get a lot of enjoyment out of it.”

Fearless Flyer and Direct Deal are two of five greyhounds that make up McGovern’s racing team.

“We’ve never had more than a handful. We love the dogs and try to put as much time into them as possible, I think that would be hard to do with a big team.

“I compare them to humans – if you like your boss you’re going to work a little bit harder for him, I think it’s the same with the dogs.”

Fearless Flyer and Direct Deal will jump from boxes 2 and 3 respectively in tomorrow night’s final and McGovern is nervous yet optimistic of his chances.

“I think Direct Deal is drawn perfectly in box two as he’ll be looking for the rail. I think Fearless Flyer will lead him – if Fearless Flyer gets around the first turn in front I don’t think there’s a dog in the race that could run him down.”

McGovern, if successful will be his first metropolitan win in a decade.

“I’ve only had a couple – my last was with Tea Towel at Sandown in 2006. It’d be great thrill to win the race – it’d be just like winning the lottery.”

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Jason Adams
About Jason Adams - Racing & Communications Officer at Sandown Park. Over 5 years involvement in greyhound racing and one of the sport's biggest and most passionate fans.
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