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Thursday, May 26, 2016

The field is set for the final of the $140,000 Wheeling Island National on Monday afternoon, May 30 (Memorial Day).
Greyhounds competed in six qualifying rounds along the way to the championship final. The original field of 64 was cut to 32 for the fourth, fifth and sixth rounds with points accumulated in the first three qualifiers dropped.
The top qualifier is Atascocita Sig, who posted three straight victories in rounds four, five and six to accumulate 48 points. The Joel Roden-trained sprinter captured five of the six rounds.
Completing the championship final field are WW’s Glow N Show (Wayne Ward Kennel), 40 points; PJ Hold My Own (A Ray Kennel), 30 points; Already Platinum (Jacobs Racing Kennel), 26 points; SE’s Solid Cash (Lester Raines Kennel), 24 points; PJ Porsche (Charter Kennel), 22 points; JD Tight Fit (A Ray Kennel) and JD Independence (Brad Boeckenstedt Kennel), 21 points each.
Going to post in the consolation final will be Red Octane (Jacobs Racing Kennel), 19 points; Coach Vogs (Steve Sarras Kennel) and Lady Sasquatch (Patriot/Taplin Kennel), 18 points each; Flying Wolf Pack (Patriot/Taplin Kennel), 16 points; SG Outlaw Women (Rico Racing Kennel) and Mystico (Clear The Way Kennel), 15 points each; GLS Lover Boy (Jacobs Racing Kennel) and AMF Animus (A Ray Kennel), 14 points each.
PJ Pipe It Down (Charter Kennel) posted 14 points, but lost the tie-breaker. GLS Lover Boy advanced with the fastest time; AMF Animus and PJ Pipe It Down had the same fastest time, but Animus won two qualifying rounds races while Pipe It Down won once.
The post position draw will be Thursday evening.
Posting victories in the four sixth round races Wednesday afternoon were Atascocita Sig, PJ Hold My Own, SE’s Solid Cash and Already Platinum.
Following are brief capsules of the sixth round:
Atascocita Sig closed in the stretch to nip PJ’s Pipe It Down by a neck at the wire in 29.45. RS’soutofcontrol rounded out the trifecta ticket.
PJ Hold My Own jumped out to an early 4-length advantage before prevailing by 2 ½ lengths over Flying Wolf Pack in 29.46. Coach Vogs settled for third.
SE’s Solid Cash closed from third in the stretch to catch frontrunner Lady Sasquatch by 1 ½ lengths in 29.48. PJ Dont Flinch was third.
Already Platinum posted a box-to-wire 3-length victory in 29.30. WW’s Glow N Show was second followed by AMF Animus.
Points scored following the sixth round for greyhounds not making the championship final and consolation follow:
PJ Pipe It Down, 14 points
Jones Appetit, 13 points
RS’soutofcontrol, 11 points
Stars Will Shine, 10 points
PJ Dont Flinch, 10 points
Superior Lucious, 9 points
Lightsonbroadway, 8 points
Flyin Bold Ruler, 7 points
AMF Vendetta, 7 points
Superior Echo, 7 points
WW Bait N Switch, 5 points
WW’s Sin City, 4 points
Miss Dilly, 4 points
Blameitonthefame, 4 points
AMF Crestfallen, 3 points
PG Over Site, 3 points
Prior to the first round of the stake event, Racing Director Jim Gartland, local greyhound historian Robin Reed and Racing Reporter Stan Pawloski made their picks for the final eight.
Coming out on top was Gartland with five of the finalists, Pawloski had four and Reed picked three.
Gartland tabbed Atascocita Sig, PJ Hold My Own, Already Platinum, PJ Porsche and SE’s Solid Cash. His three misses were Quick Reserve, PJ Pipe It Down and Coach Vogs.
Pawloski picked Atascocita Sig, PJ Porsche, SE’s Solid Cash and PJ Hold My Own. He missed on WW’s Sin City, SH Peregrine, Blameitonthefame and Quick Reserve.
Reed correctly selected Atascocita Sig, PJ Hold My Own and SE’s Solid Cash. His misses were WW’s Sin City, Coach Vogs, PJ Pipe It Down, AMF Befall and Flyin Bold Ruler.

I was introduced to greyhound racing by a friend in the late 1970s at Wheeling Downs and fell in love with the sport and the athletes immediately. Throughout the years, I have developed a deep passion for racing. In the mid 1990s, I started writing a weekly greyhound column and shortly thereafter became a writer for The Greyhound Review.

I have enjoyed watching and writing about these wonderful competitors, including All-Americans DD's Nelson, Kiowa Sweet Trey, Gene's Champion, WW Apple Jax, Greys Royalcrown, Nimby TP Jan, Hi Noon Hero, Gable Sour Cream, KB's Ruckus and Cry Case.