Will Victoria Maintain Perth Cup Dominance?

VICTORIAN sensation Lala Kiwi looks set to continue Victorian greyhound’s domination of the Group 1 Perth Cup at Cannington on Saturday night.

Mick Floyd

17 March 2022

LALA Kiwi looks set to continue Victorian greyhound’s domination of the Perth Cup at Cannington on Saturday night.

13 Victorian trained greyhounds have won the Perth Cup since 2000 including the last three editions (2021 – Tiggerlong Tonk, 2020 – Simon Told Helen, 2019 – Orson Allen), and is well represented in the 47th renewal of Western Australia’s biggest race.

FIELDS AND FORM CANNINGTON SATURDAY NIGHT

Lala Kiwi was brilliant in her heat win last week, while Paddy Wants Pats also caught the eye on his Cannington debut.

The pair last fought out a thrilling finish to the Australian Cup in February, with Lala Kiwi holding off Paddy Wants Pats in the concluding stages and it wouldn’t surprise to see them both in the finish again.

They will need to be at their best to defeat a strong crop of locally trained greyhounds keen to keep the Cup in the West. Leading the charge is Rostered Off which shared the time honours with Lala Kiwi, while littermate Vice Grip and exciting youngster West On Finn are also racing in superlative form.

Here’s a run down of the 2022 Perth Cup field, the $214,000 group 1 final to be run at 11.08pm AEST on Saturday 19 March.

1. Rostered Off

Trainer: Paul Stuart
Heat win: 29.65 (box 5)
First split: 5.48

The former Victorian lit up Cannington, recording the equal fastest heat and with a tidy first split despite having to jump from box 5. He has won four times over 600m at Cannington and twice over 715m so you can expect him to be strong at the finish. If can begin like he did in his and hold the rail from box (from which he’s won seven of 15 starts) he’s a great each way show.

2. Speed Bandit
Trainer: Enzo Crudeli
Heat win: 29.91 (box 4)
First split: 5.49

Ran the race of her career to win his heat, leading all of the way to score in 29.91, the fifth time she’s run 30 seconds or quicker at Cannington. She’s quick early and is capable of leading – and has a great strike rate when she does lead – but will need to improve on her best time (29.88) to win against a field of this class.

3. Makuru
Trainer: Eric Campana
Heat win: 29.95 (box 8)
First split: 5.49

His best form has been at Mandurah (where he has won seven of his 21 starts) but chose the right time to break through at Cannington, recording his first win in eight starts at the venue in his Cup heat. His best form has been over 405m and is likely to find others too strong.

4. Lala Kiwi
Trainer: Andrea Dailly
Heat win: 29.65 (box 6)
First split: 5.50

Aiming to become the second greyhound to win the Australian Cup-Perth Cup double, Lala Kiwi made it two from two on her Perth campaign with a brilliant 29.65 heat win. Drawn box 4 – the same box from which she won the Australian Cup – and lining up now for her fourth group final in seven starts, she’s quick early, strong at the end and at home racing the best in the land. A deserved favourite and the one to beat.

5. Vice Grip
Trainer: Adam Smithson
Heat win: 30.01
First split: 5.54

A well-travelled litter brother to Rostered off that has found another leg in WA, he was made to work hard to win his heat after finding trouble at the first turn following a modest getaway. Showed great resilience though after finding that trouble to nail Granite Song on the line. Has won 10 of 14 over 520m at Cannington including a brilliant 29.54 gallop last December but will need to step as well as he ever has to overcome the sticky draw – especially with so much pace drawn beneath him.

6. Archibald
Trainer: Robert Westworth
Heat time: 29.98 (ran second to Lala Kiwi)
First split: 5.38

Showed brilliant early speed in his heat running the fastest first split of the finalists. Does have a smart 29.81 under his belt but doesn’t have a great strike rate (has won just three of 16) this track and distance and the box draw hasn’t been kind. The outsider of the field.

7. West On Finn
Trainer: Christopher Halse
Heat time: 29.93 (ran second to Rostered Off)
First split: 5.56

The baby of the field still a month shy of his second birthday and a veteran of just eight career starts. Ran 29.73 at his third race start and won twice from this box leading into the heats, running 30.02 and 29.84. That won’t be fast enough to win here especially if he begins the way he did in the heats. One to follow, but not here.

8. Paddy Wants Pats
Trainer: Kelly Bravo
Heat win: 29.76
First split: 5.50

Is quickly emerging as one of the country’s premier sprinters having won the Listed Wester Districts Derby before running second to Lala Kiwi in the Australian Cup. Showed great tenacity on his Cannington debut last week and will benefit from that first run at the track. It’s always difficult to cross group 1 field from box 8 but may get a cart across from the likes of West On Finn, and with a clear run will be right in the mix.

Tips: 4-1-8-5

Suggested Bet: Rostered Off (1) each-way