MANDURAH short-course specialist Miss Bamsy and hobby trainer Jackie Wilson are poised to complete the unlikeliest of paths to Group glory in Friday night’s Group 3 Mandurah Mail Birthday Cup.
The widely-travelled Miss Bamsy, a November ’14 daughter of Fabregas and Miss Chicki, started her career in NSW, where she wasn’t able to open her account in 12 attempts, albeit she ran eight minor placings.
She then relocated to South Australia, where a Gawler 400m maiden was her only success in five appearances.
With just one win from 17 starts, Miss Bamsy was sold for the bargain price of just $2000 and headed to Western Australia, where she’s staged a remarkable rags to riches turnaround, culminating in her qualification for the $25,000 to-the-winner Birthday Cup.
“It’s a bit of a buzz!” said Jackie Wilson, a ten-year trainer who prepares a small team of five.
“I knew the Birthday Cup was a big race, but I didn’t actually realise it was a Group race. It’s my first runner in a Group race. We were rapt to win the heat and it would be a dream to win the final, but we’re not getting carried away yet.”
Miss Bamsy started off slowly in WA, winning just one of her first four starts, before bursting into prominence with a sensational nine race winning streak between August and October.
Her 22.59 heat victory last Friday, the second quickest qualifying performance, was her 14th win from 20 starts over Mandurah’s 405m course and 15th from 38 overall.
“She was up for sale and only cost $2000,” Wilson explained.
“Her part-owner Gary Nelson is always looking at buying inexpensive dogs, because we don’t do it on a big scale. Gary liked her and he has a bit of a knack for buying cheap dogs, but she has well and truly outdone any expectations that her owners or I had.
“There are no hidden secrets in the kennel; it’s been a big surprise.
“I think the most races I’ve won in a row previously with a dog would’ve been three and as the numbers went up to nine in a row it was getting a bit surreal and ridiculous. She became a bit of a celebrity in the kennel!
“She’s only raced at Mandurah because I’m not really a big fan of the new Cannington. She probably could run the 490m at Mandurah and 520m at Cannington, but when something is going so good, why break the cycle? If you changed things and it didn’t work you’d be kicking yourself.
“She can be a bit of a princess and she’s a handful at times, but you make an exception when they’re going so well!”
Miss Bamsy started even-money favourite from box one in her 2.25 length heat victory over Yunderup Dozer and she’s once again been allocated the rails alley for the final, although surprisingly Wilson would’ve been happy with a middle draw.
“I wouldn’t have minded four or five because she loves the middle boxes,” Wilson offered.
“She jumped fairly in her heat and then the two (Mamma Monelli) moved off the track. The only other two times that she hasn’t really jumped over here was from the one and also when she had box eight in a final.
“They’re all very good dogs and I think the race will be won in the first 20 metres. Whoever can lead and stay out of trouble will probably win the race.”