This Saturday night sees the running of the Group 2 Brittons Formal Wear WA Derby Final (520m) at Cannington, after the running of two heats over the weekend.
First run in 1976, the Derby is for the best greyhounds whelped on February 1 two years prior.
For this year’s edition of the Derby, it is restricted to greyhounds whelped on or after February 1 in 2016.
Rajundi won the inaugural edition of the race in 1976, when it was unsponsored, and wasn’t a Listed or Group race.
The race was upgraded to Group 3 status in 1993, then a decade later was upgraded to a Group 2 race.
This year, chasers will be running for a share of $60,000.
The field for this year’s Group 2 event doesn’t contain any chasers trained on the east coast, but in recent times the riches on offer have made their way across the Nullarbor.
East coast greyhounds won 11 of the 16 WA Derbies between 1999 and 2014, nine of them from Victoria, and one each from Queensland and New South Wales.
This year’s edition of the Derby has three trainers who are yet to have a winner; Jamie Marsh, Chris Halse and Michael Johnston.
Linda Britton and Christine Robartson are the most successful trainers in the race’s history, having won on three occasions.
Britton won with Reggemite (1998), Blue Catona (2000) and Jordy Pordy (2012), while Robartson won with Eljay (1992), Michael’s Tears (1994) and High Earner (2009).
Enzo Crudelli has won the previous two editions of the race with Shell Shocked (2016) and Sassy Ginger (2017), but has only got the first reserve in this year’s event with It’s The Horse.
Dave Hobby and Paul Stuart won the race in 2008 and 2010 respectively, the pair will be looking to win the race for a second time on Saturday night.
Hobby has a three-pronged attack on the race with Sieben Monelli, Bart Monelli and Hotshot Monelli, while Stuart has Eighty Eight engaged.
Since 1999, box eight has never produced a winner of the WA Derby, while every other box has produced the winner of the race at least once in that time.
Box six has been the most successful box in that time, producing five winners since the turn of the millennium, with Tiggeralong Amigo the most recent of those in 2014.
West On Augie is expected to jump a short price favourite in the Saturday night’s event, and he will come from box five, which has produced four winners since 1999.
The WA Derby jumps at 9.22 on Saturday night.