Harada’s odds tight

Favourite for world’s rich­est race won’t be put in cot­ton wool

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - RACING -

GET It Gizmo, Black Opium and Shima Shine posted faster semi times but Good Odds Harada’s re­mark­able con­sis­tency and near-per­fect fi­nal draw have made him favourite to win Fri­day night’s TAB Mil­lion Dol­lar Chase at Went­worth Park.

The Frank Hurst-trained Good Odds Harada, who has drawn box two, has been in­stalled $3.60 tab.com.au top pick with quick­est qual­i­fier Get It Gizmo, who will exit the prized rails box, at $3.80.

Get It Gizmo clocked an elec­tri­fy­ing 29.45sec to win his heat, while Black Opium, who stopped the clock a frac­tion slower at 29.46sec and has box five, is $4.20 third pick.

When Good Odds Harada, trained at Lon­don­derry, next door to the Rich­mond grey­hound track, led through­out to win his heat in 29.66, he took his tally to seven wins and three plac­ings from his past 10 starts.

While Good Odds Harada has shown a lik­ing for out­side boxes — win­ning 11 of 14 races from six and seven — Hurst is de­lighted with his dog’s box two fi­nal draw. He said Good Odds Harada won’t be “put in cot­ton wool’’ in the week lead­ing up to the world’s rich­est grey­hound prize.

“I won’t change his rou­tine,” Hurst said. “He will have his usual hitout up the straight at Ap­pin on Tues­day and that will be it.’’

At the prospect of col­lect­ing a $1 mil­lion cheque, owner Tracey Hurst, who works full­time and is the wife of Good Odds Harada’s trainer, won­dered aloud: “Can some­thing like this re­ally be hap­pen­ing to or­di­nary, nor­mal peo­ple like us?’’

Un­for­tu­nately, early Chase favourite Feral Franky, an­other mem­ber of the lit­ter by Col­li­sion from So­lar Pak that yielded Good Odds Harada and Good Odds Buddy, took a tum­ble in his heat but emerged un­hurt.

Hunter Val­ley trainer Ja­son Mackay, who landed this year’s other big Went­worth Park race, the Golden Easter Egg with Zip­ping Bailey, has two Chase fi­nal­ists in Get It Gizmo and Fly­ing Bazza, who won his heat in 29.78sec. Mackay was hop­ing to see Get It Gizmo draw box eight with Fly­ing Bazza in one but wasn’t com­plain­ing when they came up with one and three, re­spec­tively.

Get It Gizmo joined Mackay’s ken­nels only a month ago, the mas­ter trainer re­veal­ing he orig­i­nally had “no room’’ to ac­com­mo­date the Vic­to­rian-owned grey­hound.

“Harry Mano­lit­sis, Gizmo’s owner, asked me to take the dog a cou­ple of months ago but I had to knock him back be­cause I did not have a spare ken­nel,’’ Mackay said.

“Harry was per­sis­tent though and when he called again a few weeks later, I was able to house Get It Gizmo, along with Flynn, an­other dog Harry owns.’’

Black Opium’s all-the-way heat win gave Vic­to­rian trainer Ja­son Thomp­son a du­al­state double on Fri­day night, with Hooked On Scotch, an­other of his team, tak­ing out the Group 1 Ade­laide Cup, worth $75,000 to the win­ner.

Thomp­son was on duty in Ade­laide but his wife, Seona, who han­dled Black Opium, told friends her hus­band had in­di­cated he was sat­is­fied with box five in the Chase fi­nal.

Fourth in the bet­ting at $7 is slow­est heat win­ner Curt Lee, who took 30.14sec for the 520m but drew well in box eight in the fi­nal.

Not the fastest qual­i­fier, Good Odds Harada is still favourite to win the Mil­lion Dol­lar Chase at WP.

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