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Friday, March 17, 2017

 

Oaks Maddy and Show On The Road

A pair of Shouthland superstars have picked up both NGA Awards—Oaks Maddy winning the 46th Annual NGA Rural Rube Award as the nation’s top sprinter for 2016, and Show On The Road capturing the Flashy Sir Award as the best distance greyhound in the land. The duo edged out two other Southland champs, SE Tali Sundance and Oshkosh Kid, respectively in very close voting.

Oaks Maddy captured two stake races and made the final of a third on her way to a twenty two win season at Southland competing against some of the best there is to offer in the country. She was voted first team All American by the AGTOA. Owned by Mick Hymes and racing for the Gloria Dorsey Kennel, Maddy breezed through qualifying undefeated and then romped home to a three and half length win in the $100,000 Arkansas Bred Sprint Division of the Southland Festival of Stakes. Just seven days later she came back to best a very tough field in the $10,000 King vs. Queens Challenge beating the likes of SE Tali Sundance, Flying Bosnian and Chasmo’s Dutch. The Kings vs. Queen’s victory was a bit of revenge for her as she had fallen in her race against a similar field earlier in the year in the $60,000 Sprint Derby. The June, 2013 daughter of Pat C Clement-Oaks Gem Brandy had a very complete year in 2016 compiling an overall record of 61-23-5-8-6 for the period and deservedly gets the honor as the nation’s best sprinter. As such, she also received an invitation to the 2017 version of the Bet America 550 which she went ahead and won to put icing on the cake.

Runner-up in the Rural Rube voting was Charter Kennel’s SE Tali Sundance, who battled Oaks Maddy for top honors all year. The White & Red son of KC And All-Flying Cassel did plenty to earn recognition winning 27 races at Southland making three stake finals along the way. Tali Sundance who also holds the current NGA track record was bred and raised by Steve Ward and Penny Wick and finished the year with a 47-27-9-2-4 mark.

Others high in the voting for the Rural Rube were last year’s winner Husker Magic form the Imark Kennels, Vince Berland’s Flying Bosnian and another Southland sprinter and stake winner, Chasmo’s Dutch who raced for Lester Raines and is owned by Judith Moore.

Voting in the Flashy Sir was a two-dog race for the most part with Show On The Road nosing out Oshkosh Kid by just 2 votes to become this year’s top router. Finishing a distant third in the voting was Derby Lane standout; Oya Stan The Man. The tight voting was just another indicator of how close and how well these two greyhounds performed this year albeit at slightly different distances.

Racing for the Plum Creek Kennel and owned by David Robinette, Show On The Road made the finals of only one stake, the $100,000 Marathon Stakes where he encountered much trouble and finished 7th. However, over the course of the year the 2013 son of KC And All-Closin In Onawin put together one incredible racing season that included the following: From December 2, 2015 through April 28, 2016 he ran 26 straight races where he never finished worse than 2nd, including 18 wins! He reeled off 13 wins in a row over the middle distance at one point during that stretch! The streak ended with that April 28 race as he suffered a slight injury and would be sidelined until July. After a couple of schooling races he came back into form and from July 29 through September 24 would run 12 more starts never finishing worse than 4th. He was 12-8-1-2-1 during that period. In November, the kennel moved him over to the longer Marathon course at Southland where he immediately picked up four more wins and a second in 10 starts before the year came to a close.

He ended the year at 48-27-8-2-1 despite missing two full months of racing. His trainer, Monte Hoopes said “This is one of the best greyhounds I ever had my hands on, he has the best backstretch run and best close I have ever seen”. “No slight to the many great greyhounds I’ve had the pleasure of working with, but as far as distance goes, he’s the best”, he added.

With accolades as good or better than Show On The Road, Oshkosh Kid finished a close second in the voting. Southland’s win leader for 2016 with 31 victories, the Charter Kennel ace also picked up a repeat win in the $100,000 Southland Middle Distance Championship and was a finalist in the Razorback Classic. He had a streak of five months of racing where he never finished worse than 3rd compiling a 25-21-2-2 record during the stretch. His overall record of 54-31-11-6-1 is as impressive as any against the level of competition he encountered on a daily basis. Owner Larry Pollard should be very proud of his champion.

Others receiving votes for Flashy Sir included Gary Reicherts’ Oya Stan The Man, a Derby Lane stake winner for the D’Arcy Kennel, Mega Revelation who raced at Derby Lane and Southland for David and Jeff Blair and Mike Huckabee a Flagler/Naples standout who is owned and raced by the Brindle Kennel.

The 46th Annual NGA Rural Rube and Flashy Sir awards will be presented at the awards ceremonies program at the Greyhound Hall of Fame on Thursday night, Apr. 28, during the NGA Spring Meet.

 Jim Gartland is the Executive Director for the NGA and serves as the Secretary Treasurer to the Board.