Sporting Dave – proved the makeweight of the year by landing the Coral Sussex Cup at Hove on Thursday night.
After last Thursday’s semi finals, racing manager Jeff Piper called the final as a buckle between Sporting Dave and Trade Fudge and noted “To win it, I think Seamus’ dog has to come away at his best”, and that is exactly what the 5-4 chance did.
Although led up by favourite Trade Fudge (4.18), and narrowly behind Bit View Knight (4.23), Sporting Dave was only two spots off his best ever sectional when going up in third place off a 4.25 split. In doing so he avoided the potentially troublesome Dusko Popov and set after the leader along the backstraight.
The Cahill runner eased his way through at the third bend and then held on for a one length victory. The most consistent of hounds, Dave completed his unbeaten run though the event with calculated times of 29.78, 29.76 and 29.79.
Owned in partnership by Teresa Cahill and Dave Doyle, the Cahill’s second Sussex Cup winner – Loughteen Blanco was the first – was named after the manner in which he was acquired.
Seamus said: “Jerry Griffin in Ireland bought a dog for Dave who didn’t turn out quite as well as we had hoped. He was okay, but a bit short of what we were expecting. Jerry then offered Dave the puppy who was only eight months old at the time. The pup was then named because of that.
“He might be two lengths short of being a top Derby dog, but he is a terrific consistent greyhound and I thought he showed great courage to force his way through at the third bend. The Kent Derby is probably next on the agenda with Yarmouth another possibility.”