‘Buster’ brilliant on middle distance debut

Hooked On Scotch showed why he is regarded by some as ‘the fastest greyhounds on the planet’ with a breathtaking victory on his 595m debut tonight.

In one of the most eagerly anticipated middle distance debuts in over a decade of racing over the trip, the 515m track record holder began flawlessly to take the early lead and open a three length gap to Weblec Ace. That margin was cut to less than a length down the back straight however ‘Buster’ kicked clear in the run to the line, winning by 2¼ lengths in 33.806.

“Really happy to see him begin like that,” said trainer Jason Thompson.

“That was one of the reasons we put him in over the distance. He’s been running against some of the sprinters in the country and finding a bit of trouble at the start so hopefully he can take a bit of confidence from that.”

His winning time was the ninth fastest ever over the distance and the second fastest run a by a greyhound on debut over the trip, beaten only by Dyna Double One’s 33.63 track record gallop.

As impressive as the win was, his campaign over the middle distance is likely to be short lived with the Victorian National Sprint Series over 515m in early August his next target.

Group 1 Sapphire Crown winner Black Opium was unable to make it a winning double for Thompson after finishing second to the impressive Mepunga Daniel in the following race.

Black Opium began well but was beaten to the first turn by Mepunga Daniel and despite her best efforts, was unable to reel in the leader as Mepunga Daniel scored in an impressive 29.31.

Mepunga Daniel was trainer Jeff Britton’s second winner on the night following Weblec Jet’s impressive victory in race 2. The son of Fernando Bale remains undefeated after three career starts.

Click here for full results.

Seona Thompson discusses Hooked On Scotch and Black Opium's performances
Hooked On Scotch runs the second fastest debut 595m time ever
Mick Floyd
About Mick Floyd - Mick is the Racing and Media Manager at Sandown Park and has 15 years of experience in the sport. He has a finely tuned talent for finding three legs of a quaddie. You can follow his ramblings on Twitter - @mickfloyd
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