Spotlight is back on Angle Park

31st August 2021

Posted in: Latest News

Caption: Last year’s Adelaide Cup winner Golden Night with trainer Troy Murray (green vest at back) and a band of supporters. (Photo: Kurt Donsberg)

 G3 SOUTH AUSTRALIAN DERBY (530m)
At Angle Park, $25,000 to the winner
Heats September 9. Final September 16

G3 SOUTH AUSTRALIAN OAKS (530m)
At Angle Park, $25,000 to the winner
Heats September 9. Final September 16

G1 ADELAIDE CUP (530m)
At Angle Park, $100,000 to the winner
Heats September 30. Final October 9

 

By TERRY WILSON

THE revamped Angle Park circuit will be given a searching examination when three Group races are held at the Adelaide venue through September.

The South Australian Oaks and South Australian Derby will head the top-grade racing with heats on September 9 and the finals, at Group 3 level and boasting $25,000 to the winners, set for September 16.

Then comes the crown of South Australian racing, the Group 1 Adelaide Cup with $100,000 to the winner, on Friday night, October 8.
Greyhound Racing South Australia has spent a little more than $1 million on the track revamp, which has included four new distances.

“The track had not been overhauled for 50 years,” said GRSA racing manager Shaun Mathieson.
The old 515m distance has been replaced by a 530m journey, the old 600m is now 595m, the old 731m is now 730m and a short 342m sprint has been added for a non-bend start.
It is worth noting that now, from the new 530m start, dogs do not have to veer left to get to the inside rail.
“The new 530m start re-aligns the boxes so the dogs get a straight run,” said Mathieson, noting that there had been mixed reactions from trainers about the revamping of Angle Park and the new 530 metre journey.
“Yes, there has been some reaction from trainers,” he said. “The concern is that the 515m is now out to 530m but the redeveloped track has better transition turns now.”
On the racing side of things, amid severe problems caused by the COVID-19 curse, a significant change has been made to the Adelaide Cup lead-in match-racing series.
In past years this event was an interstate Origin challenge between runners from Victoria and the home state.
Because of the border closures this event will now be run as a pure SA versus the rest with four home-state runners taking on the best from interstate.
If there are not enough suitably qualified interstaters, then South Australian dogs will take their place.
The Origin match-racing was a boon for Hooked On Scotch, from Jason Thompson in Victoria, who took out the 2019 challenge and earned an automatic entry into the Adelaide Cup final, which it won in devastating style.
As for the tight restrictions in place as the pandemic hits the nation hard, GRSA has introduced new rules that allow non-South Australians to transfer their greyhounds to SA-based trainers.
“The dogs can remain in their original trainers’ names even if they’re only briefly with SA trainers,” said Mathieson.
“We’re taking the view that if they can get their dogs here then we’ll accept their nominations.”