Tornado Tears consolidated his standing as the country’s premier stayer with a stunning victory in the Victorian final of the Crocmedia National Distance Championship at Sandown Park last night.
Tornado Tears – ‘Batman’ as he’s known to his growing legion of fans – began well form box 7 to sit outside early leader Dyna Chancer. The pair quickly established a break on the field and as they completed their first lap Tornado Tears switched back to the rail to drive beneath Dyna Chancer and soon raced away to a seven length win in 41.39. His winning time was his third fastest over the distance – and eighth fastest in history – and was a full 10 lengths faster than the time he qualified in.
Despite turning just two and half in the days leading in last night’s final, Tornado Tears has already won eight of his nine starts over the ‘half-mile’ and over $387,000 in prize money. He has been installed as the $1.75 favourite to win his third group 1 title when he takes his place in the $105,000 Crocmedia National Distance Championship grand final at Sandown Park on Friday 24 August.
“He jumped really well and he’s hard to beat when he jumps like that,” his trainer Robert Britton told James van de Maat on Sky Racing following the run.
“Coming into the summer months dogs can really run time, you don’t see it in the middle of winter.”
Victoria will launch a three pronged attack on the Crocmedia National Distance final with Dyna Chancer set to join Tornado Tears in the $105,000 final, as will litter mate Rippin’ Sam who qualified after being granted the Greyhound Clubs Australia Wildcard. Britton believes little separates his star chasers despite Tornado Tears now boasting a 5-0 record when they have raced head to head, as their contrasting racing patterns makes Rippin’ Sam’s task much more difficult.
“It depends on how he positions early,” Britton continued.
“He was up there early tonight but he got shuffled right back to near last and then got into trouble, but he kept coming. If he doesn’t get into that trouble in the final he’s definitely a player in the game.”
Victorian stayers have dominated the National Distance Championship since its inception in 1969, having won the title on 26 occasions including each of the last four years.
In the following race, Big Flood raced into the Crocmedia National Sprint Championship final with a convincing 2 ½ length victory over Shadale in 29.43.