Geall’s Quest For Easter Gold

VICTORIAN trainer Dave Geall is striving to create history in Saturday night’s Group 1 Ladbrokes Golden Easter Egg Final at Wentworth Park.

Gerard Guthrie

19 April 2019

VICTORIAN trainer Dave Geall is striving to create history in Saturday night’s Group 1 Ladbrokes Golden Easter Egg Final at Wentworth Park.

After winning NSW’s flagship greyhound event last year with Up Hill Jill, Geall is taking aim at unprecedented back-to-back victories with Miss Splendamiro, a $4.60 chance with TAB.

Geall has become a regular fixture in Sydney on Easter Saturday, with Miss Splendamiro, beaten favourite in last year’s Egg Final, when trained in NSW, his third successive finalist.

“The Easter Egg has such an aura about it and when you’re a small trainer, as such, just to get one through to the final is a big thrill, let alone win it,” said Geall.

“Now we’re in our third final in a row and Miss Splendamiro’s a big chance too.

“Up Hill Jill is in pup to (champion sire) Fernando Bale at the moment, so we’re hoping we’ll be back again in two years’ time!”

After starting her career in NSW, Miss Splendamiro is well-acquainted with Wentworth Park, winning 14 of her 26 starts at the venue; however she was run down by fellow Victorian Blue Striker in last weekend’s fastest semi-final.

“After the shock of Blue Striker getting up and beating her I was happy with her run after I analysed it,” Geall said.

“Blue Striker ran the fastest semi time and Miss Splendamiro still ran 29.65s herself.

“She absolutely flew out from box three and ran 5.41s early, which was the quickest of the semis.

“But Miss Splendamiro’s first split is about a length and a half off Up Hill Jill and that’s why Up Hill Jill won Group 1 races and Miss Splendamiro hasn’t been able to yet.

“But she is due for some luck because she didn’t have any at all in the Paws Of Thunder in Sydney earlier in the year, Australian Cup and Perth Cup heat.”

While Miss Splendamiro boasts an impressive five from 11 career strike rate from box eight, Geall concedes she’ll have her work cut out from the outside alley.

“You can say she’s got a good record from box eight but it’s totally different in Group races,” Geall said.

“It’s going to be very tough to get across from out there.”