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Jim Gartland

Jan 14, 2021

Although racing seasons were shortened as a result of the Covid pandemic, the race for the national win title continued and in the end it was another sprinter from the Lashmet farm, LK's Santorini, who took home the honors. That's back to back titles for John & Jill Lashmet of Colorado. Last year's winner was LK's Crush N It.

The battle was closely contested right to the very end. Eight greyhounds were separated by only four wins in the final tally including last year's winner LK's Crush N It. Santorini had fewer starts than many of the other top finishers, but was able to capture 33 victories during the 2020 racing year. All of her victories came at Derby Lane. The runner-up this year was quite impressive too, as Killer Tolstoy earned 31 wins while racing at three different tracks, Naples, Dubuque and Southland. Once again, a handful of Caliente racers were in the mix as they often have many more opportunities for starts than most American racing offers.

Santorini’s record for the year was 56-33-11-7-1, all at Derby Lane. She captured a couple of stakes including the Inaugural and the season ending Grand Finale. She snapped off numerous win streaks throughout the year including an impressive run where she went undefeated in eight straight starts from September 26 through October 30. Unfortunately, she suffered a minor injury shortly after that streak and was sidelined for almost all of November, returning for a start on December 9, just in time to finish off the season. Santorini is a home grown product out of Lashmet's own LK's Vespar-LK's Chardonnay, was raised in Eaton Colorado by the Lashmets and raced for the Lashmet Kennel trained by Ken Deacon.

Runner-up in the win race, Killer Tolstoy, ran up a 65-31-10-6-3 record for owners Alan Hill & Kirk Harlan. Tolstoy managed to win 16 races at Naples and 15 races at Dubuque before moving on to Southland late in the year to finish second with 31 wins. Tolstoy is a son of Superior Panama-Killer Torina and had yet to get a victory at Southland by year's end.

Interestingly enough, another greyhound owned by Kirk Harlan finished third in this year's race by capturing 30 wins racing at Caliente. The female by Flying Wolf Pack-Slatex Diamond accumulated a 60-30-11-7-7 record despite missing the last two months of the year due to an injury.

Five greyhounds finished tied for fourth in this year's race, all with 29 wins. That list includes two more Lashmet racers in LK's Effingham and LK's Crush N It, Twilite Kennel's RPG Get You Back, and two other Caliente sprinters, Shopify and Yolo Sky. LK's Effingham and RPG Get You Back both raced at Bestbet Jacksonville, while LK's Crush N It finished his career at Derby Lane. Shopify is owned by Plum Creek and Yolo Sky is one of Jeff Blair's pups.

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