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Friday, September 22, 2017

Steve Sarras Kennel sprinter Hit Me Chief tops all qualifiers after two rounds of the $35,000 West Virginia Greyhound Owners and Breeders Association Juvenile Stakes at Wheeling Island.

Heading into the Sunday, Sept. 24, semifinal round, Hit Me Chief had a win and a third to accumulate 22 points after the first two preliminary rounds. Next in line are GF Mama Mia (Patriot/Taplin) and Ban Chini (Steve Sarras) with 20 points each.

The field will be cut to the top 16 for the semifinal round. The championship final is set for Saturday afternoon, Sept. 30.

Three long shots posted victories in Wednesday’s second round – GF Reposado (Patriot/Taplin), 19-1; Jax Eleni (Abrahamson), 11-1; and Bustin BJ (Steve Sarras), 9-1.

Following are capsule reviews of the three second round races.

GF Reposado grabbed the early lead before holding off CET Patches by a head at the wire in 30.18. Hit Me Chief got up for third to round out the trifecta ticket.

Jax Eleni posted a box-to-wire 2 ½-length victory in 30.15. Ban Chini and Mac’s Patty Pat finished second and third.

Bustin BJ got up at the wire to edge out GF La Gloria by a head in 30.06. CET Razorback settled for third.

The point breakdown after the second round follows:

Hit Me Chief (Steve Sarras), 22 points

GF Mama Mia (Patriot/Taplin), 20 points Ban Chini (Steve Sarras), 20 points

Bustin BJ (Steve Sarras), 18 points

Mac’s Patty Pat (A Ray), 17 points CET Patches (Steve Sarras), 17 points Jax Eleni (Abrahamson), 17 points

GF Reposado (Patriot/Taplin), 16 point Jason Martini (Steve Sarras),

13 points Dale Harding (Steve Sarras),

12 points GF La Gloria (Patriot/Taplin),

11 points Billy Bibbit (Steve Sarras),

10 points GF Cest La Vie (Patriot/Taplin), 10 points

Mac’s Blue Ridge (A Ray), 7 points

Rico’s Walter (Rico Racing), 6 points Lane’s Last Ride (Steve Sarras), 6 points

The following greyhounds were eliminated after the second round:

Mac’s Wonderland (A Ray), 3 points; Rico’s Nixon (Rico Racing), 3 points; Ryla Grace (Steve Sarras), 3 points; and Mac’s Batty Bat (A Ray), 2 points.

CET Razorback (Steve Sarras) was scratched after the second round and GF Dark Shark (Patriot/Taplin) was scratched after the first round.

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.