Melbourne Cup challenge for Boris
Watch out Australia here comes Boris one of the most exciting young greyhounds New Zealand has seen.
Thrilling Boris will carry the hopes of this country’s greyhound industry when he tackles the Melbourne Cup (515m) on November 18.
Despite his inexperience, connections have decided to tackle the world’s richest race head on.
The greyhound earned automatic entry into the race courtesy of his recent Waterloo Cup win when he trounced New Zealand’s best stayers.
The money is nice - $600,000 Australian dollars - but for Tirau trainer Karen Walsh and successful businessman and Thrilling Boris’s owner Gary Harding it’s more than that.
Harding has won almost every major race in New Zealand and won a Group I with Thrilling Brat in Australia but reserves special praise for Thrilling Boris.
Along with Walsh, he wants to prove to the Aussies that New Zealand has a greyhound good enough to compete in their major races.
‘‘I think he’s potentially the best dog I’ve ever owned,’’ Harding said. ‘‘He would be very competitive over there.
‘‘It’s exciting to have a dog like him and he’s doing it all on natural ability. We haven’t seen the best of him yet.’’
Walsh is keen to test Thrilling Boris against the Australian talent.
‘‘I’m very enthusiastic about
‘‘I think he's potentially the best dog I've ever owned’’ Gary Harding
the prospect of taking him over,’’ she said.
‘‘Obviously it’s a challenge and we will need to give him a trial on the track over there before the race.
‘‘It will all be very different so we need to give him the opportunity to check the track out.’’
Walsh and Harding will have runners in Christchurch for the New Zealand Cup at the same time which gives them a few problems to overcome.
‘‘It’s a matter of working out the logistics and having the right staff,’’ Walsh said. ‘‘Apart from that he has come through the Waterloo Cup in great order.’’
Thrilling Boris backed up his Waterloo Cup win on Monday with victory in the $11,000 NZ Racing Series final over 457m at Palmerston North.
‘‘It was a nice win,’’ Harding said. ‘‘The dog is doing everything right so why not have a go at the Australian races.’’
Melbourne Cup contender Thrilling Boris with Karen Walsh after winning the Waterloo Cup.