The Best Moments of 2020

2020 provided numerous highlights despite a whole month of non-racing and the unwelcome return of kennel cough near the end of the year. Some amazing performances, individual times, and training feats made up another big year in domestic greyhound racing action. The top eight moments of the year in no particular order are as follows.


  1. Lisa Cole trains the entire New Zealand Oaks field

One of the more remarkable training accomplishments in recent years, as Lisa Cole would take home the entire $45,000 purse of the 2020 edition of the New Zealand Oaks. Some very nice bitches made up the field with Big Time Elsa running down the speedy Big Time Brie taking home her first group One. Big Time Lantao would go on to win the Whanganui Cup and Jilliby Litsa would take out December’s Spion Rose both at Group One level.


  1. Thrilling Izzy breaks 30 seconds at Auckland

Thrilling Izzy has been a super-bitch for Karen Walsh, last week she won The Waikato Classic at Group 2 level in a 25.33s. Last year in November she cruised away with a ten length victory at Manakau Raceway and in doing so posted a 29.99s for the 527m, a feat that not many have managed to accomplish. She looks now to the Auckland Cup in March where she will be one of the major chances.


  1. Bronski Beat smashes Manawatu 660 meter track record

After racing for the first time in New Zealand at Addington over the 732m with limited success, he found a great liking to the 660m journey at the Manawatu Raceway. A six-length winner in 38.05s for his first run on his new home track was followed up by a devastating 8 length 37.89s breaking the track record again by a further 2 and a half lengths.


  1. Zipping Sheldon 29.64s at Addington

Quite Comfortably the fastest time of the year at Addington over the 520m. Zipping Sheldon used his first career ace draw to his advantage taking off for a massive win late in the 2020 year. The 8 length victory was easily his most impressive to date as he put pay to smart kennel mates such as He’s Ali and Leonard Bale.


  1. Portland Berty 20.65s at Cambridge

A long-standing Cambridge track record for the 375m was almost broken last year as the ultra-speedy Portland Berty come perilously close to breaking Blue Paragon’s 2004 run of 20.64s. The Craik trained runner racked up an impressive 8 length margin on his rivals at the finish.


  1. Rock On John Brave New Zealand Cup victory

Rock On John for Jean & Dave Fahey deserved his New Zealand Cup victory in November after pulling out impressive heat and semi-final victories. He had to dig very deep to defeat kennel mate Opawa Nat who nearly stole victory as a double-figure outsider. John put the nose out at the right time winning the Cup in a time of 30.15s at only start 13.


  1. Leonard Bale Super New Zealand Derby win.

The Craig Roberts trained son of Fernando Bale and Folio Bale was enormous in claiming his Mike Stent Decorators New Zealand Derby at Group One level. Run in September last year, Leonard Bale sat outside Bigtime Cooper (who was in red hot form at the time), for most of the race before putting him away in the concluding stages in a time of 25.45s for the 457m at Cambridge Raceway.


  1. Bolty breaks then equals Addington 295 meter track record.

The freakishly fast Bolty could be the quickest dog New Zealand has ever seen. In May he broke Swimming Goat’s 2016 track record with a ridiculous run of 16.69s for the 295m defeating Zipping Houdini who won numerous class five races by seven lengths. In September Bolty equalled his own track record again with a 9 length demolition in 16.69s.

Written by Shane Kendall

Posted on 19 January 2021

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