Syndicate In ‘Box’ Seat For Cannonball

Shaun Lamont, and the fellow nine owners that comprise the Sydney Box Syndicate, would have been forgiven if their first foray into greyhound racing had of been their last.

Adam Dobbin

7 February 2019

Shaun Lamont, and the fellow nine owners that comprise the Sydney Box Syndicate, would have been forgiven if their first foray into greyhound racing had of been their last.

Enjoying all the thrills that greyhound racing has to offer during 2017 with the talented King Carmody, the 10-strong syndicate sadly lost the eight race winner just before Christmas that year, after suffering a serious injury at Wentworth Park.

“We were all pretty flat after that and to be honest there was a while there we thought that’d be it with ownership, it was heart-wrenching,” said co-owner Shaun Lamont on Thursday.

“The day after the race Peter and Jodie (Lagogiane) called me to say the vets advice was that putting him to sleep was the best thing for him. They were in tears telling us, we were in tears, it was all very sad. You understand these things happen but until you are involved it doesn’t really hit you.”

Winner of eight races during his ill-fated career, King Carmody was a fashionably bred son of Barcia Bale out of Clockwise, making him a litter-brother to dual Group 1 winner Fast Times.

A winner at Wentworth Park in a flying 29.88, defeating Miss Splendamiro on that occasion, King Carmody also ran a sizzling 29.58 at Ladbrokes Gardens and 30.75 at Richmond, seemingly just hitting his straps before sadly coming to grief in the run at headquarters.

“A few years back myself and a mate from work Derrick (Morgan-jones) decided to ask around at work and see who might be interested in buying a greyhound. It was when the industry was going through those very tough times and we thought it’d be a way to get involved and show some support,” said Lamont.

“We called around a few of the race clubs hoping to be pointed in the right direction and didn’t really get much help at all. One day Derrick decided to call Mark Duclos, who was working at Sky Racing at the time, and he couldn’t have been more helpful. He put us in touch with John Carruthers and John’s basically taken care of everything for us right the way through, he’s been a godsend and we can’t thank him enough, without him we wouldn’t be involved,” added Lamont.

“Through John we bought a dog (King Carmody) and a bitch (Barcia Queen) from the litter. The bitch, Barcia Queen, ended up racing in New Zealand and she’s now a pet over there which we organised.”

Following the tragic end to King Carmody’s flourishing career, it appeared more than likely that the syndicate would pull up stumps, before an opportune call from Carruthers to Lamont led to the syndicate purchasing another pup out of Clockwise, this time by new sire Dyna Double One.

“John called me one day to see if we were interested – he had the Clockwise litter and at the time they were about 10 weeks old,” added Lamont.

“The syndicate had a vote and the consensus was majority rules and in the end it got over the line. One of the owners, Peter Beaman, went out to John’s and had the pick of the litter and decided on the fawn dog.”

That fawn dog turned out to be the very talented Demolition Duke, winner at three of his four starts and a major player in Friday night’s Kevin Waters Towing Cannonball Final (400m) at Richmond from box seven.

“We’re having a lot of fun, John (Carruthers) organised everything for us and the day he turned up to Jodie and Peter’s (Lagogiane) to be trained they said he was in outstanding order,” added Lamont.

“Jodie and Pete aren’t entirely sure if he’ll get 500 metres but said lately he’s really starting to relax more, mature and turn into a race dog. Of course everyone likes to race at Wentworth Park but whatever happens we are having a lot of fun regardless. Eight of the 10 owners will be at Richmond on Friday night for the final so it’s great we all have the common interest and stay connected.

“We all work on the railways and while we worked together when we started the syndicate, a few of us have gone in different directions of late. We have a Wattsapp group which keeps us all talking and everyone stays up-to-date. It’s a lot of fun and we’re looking forward to Friday.”

Along with Shaun and Derrick, the Sydney Box Syndicate is made up of Mark Allan, Mal Williams, Peter Wignall, Peter Beaman, Lucas Dobosz, Greg Grant, Carissa Costi and Steve Hogg. If their fawn flyer happens to snag Friday night’s $5,000 to-the-winner Cannonball, who takes home the trophy will be a conversation well worth having. And a spirited one it will no doubt be!