It’s A “Big Time” Monday Taranaki Cup

At least the Taranaki GRC will only have to write out one cheque when they make their stakes payment for Monday’s $6,500 Croucher & Crowder Taranaki Cup, unless there’s at least one scratching from the drawn field. All eight greyhounds drawn to contest the 520m feature is supplied from the potent Lisa Cole kennels.

Pictured: Big Time Ocean who has drawn ideally in trap one for Monday’s Taranaki Cup


Monday is a full-on afternoon of chasing action for the Taranaki GRC with a 15 race card, split into two meetings, carded for their annual TAB meeting at the Hatrick Raceway.


The Taranaki Cup (race 3, meeting 5) is an all “Big Time” affair which should make for an interesting commentary delivery from commentator Mark Romanowski, who will easily take it all in, in his professional manner.


Big Time Ocean has drawn perfectly in the one trap from where she is likely to jump straight onto the pace. This light 24.6 kg girl owns an abundance of early pace as seen during her recent “indifferent” recent Manukau 527m campaign. She was setting the pace in her Auckland Cup heat when the lure ground to a halt. She was then installed as the Auckland Cup second reserve.


She didn’t gain entry into the $90,000 Cup field however she contested the open class 527m support event last Sunday. Again, she set up the pace prior to being gunned down by her kennelmate and race rival here Simply Smooth when finishing a two-length second. Her prior Hatrick 520m outing saw her leading throughout when she delivered her tidy 30.05s 520m win.


Yes, Simply Smooth was strong when she hunted down Big Time Ocean to nail her 30.72s Auckland 527m Sunday win. She has drawn to stalk her kennelmate from the two trap here and she is capable of serving up repeat dose by out finishing her again in this event owing to that.


The pair of luckless Cole trained Auckland Cup finalists make their return to Hatrick for this feature event. Big Time Izzy did secure a race start in the Group 1 final where she wore the reserve green and white racing vest from the four trap. She jumped handy to the pace when chasing the pace making Cup winner into the first turn. She was then squeezed up when entering the final turn, then impeded which led to her kennelmate Bigtime Rod falling.


At least her seventh-placed finish saw her earning the $1,000 Breeders’ bonus payment for the Cole’s, being the first Kiwi bred greyhound to finish in the Group 1 final. She must use her known early pace from her seven trap draw on Monday from where she owns a proven record from.


Bigtime Rod is a real tough customer. He picked himself to finish the Cup after his final turn tumble and reportedly he has taken no harm from the incident. He will race from the six trap on Monday, which ironically is the same trap he hopped away from in the Auckland Cup. He was really bold in his Cup heat when in finishing second he actually clocked the second-fastest overall 527m heat time. He is fronting up for his assignment with the quickest 29.91s field Hatrick 520m time list beside his name.



Lisa Cole Monday Taranaki Cup contenders includes (from left): Simply Smooth; Big Time Izzy; Bigtime Rod


Bigtime Archie regained his open class chasing stripes when he gamely held on to claim his Monday Manawatu C4 457m win in 26.26s. His Hatrick 520m form is sound and his postrace podium claims cannot be lightly dismissed in this feature. He will race from trap three.


Melita Vella continues to draw wide traps as she’ll be sighted wearing the pink racing vest here. She has drawn trap six or wider in her last seven race day outings. She is capable of handling her wide draws as we saw when she clocked the meet best Cambridge 25.51s 457m time three races ago when she raced from trap seven. She finished an 11.25 length Auckland Cup heat third, then she ran into traffic and was jostled on the final turn in her Sunday 527m race.


The remaining two Cole trained contenders, plus the second reserve will contest Friday’s main Hatrick 520m event (race 9). Big Time Jackson led all the way two races ago when he landed his 30.48s C3/4 520m win here. He then had his first race as an open class graded chaser when he finished a 2.7 length 520m third to his race rival here Big Time Amie after he led when racing down the back straight. He will be loaded away into trap four on Monday.


Big Time Amie will jump from the adjacent trap five here from where she has raced from on four occasions for four minor placings. She contested the early pace last Friday, then stalked Big Time Jackson down the back before assuming control when led to her 30.43s win. Obviously, she must hop away smartly from her poor draw here.


Big Time Kobe is the Cole prepared second reserve who was denied racing room and he was impeded when heading into the first turn in last week’s Friday 520m event. He balanced up, and then kicked on which saw him arriving home 2.5 lengths, plus a pair of necks behind Big Time Amie.


Now, that cheque writing Taranaki Cup scenario mentioned above can easily change if the Angela Turnwald mentored Emgrand Park gains a race start from the first possie on the reserves bench. This fella is more than capable of being able to deliver a strong 520m race. Proving those thoughts is his current position sitting on top of the $35,000 City Of Palmerston North Golden Chase table with his tidy 25.78s 457m clock.



Melita Vella (left) and Big Time Jackson will contest Monday’s Taranaki Cup, while first reserve Emgrand Park is the only non-Lisa Cole trained runner listed in the ten runners   


By Peter Fenemor

Posted on 06 March 2020

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