Masters win a real family affair

MASTER: The Commersh Masters presentation at Tara Raceway last Sunday – MGGRC manager Mark Dwyer and Pat, Liam and Stuey Sharam with Donny Rocks. Picture: SUBMITTED

By David Lewis

ADELAIDE breeder-owner Ron Murch’s generous gifting of one of his performed greyhounds back in October last year has worked out pretty well for the Penola-based Sharam family.

The dog in question was Donny Rocks and ostensibly he had been given to 13-year-old Liam Sharam who had taken a real shine to the 37 kilogram brindle son of Fernando Bale and Rhonda Rocks.

Previously trained at Compton by Tracie Price, Donny Rocks had first become acquainted with Liam and his parents, Stuey and Pat, when they were making frequent trips out to the leading trainer’s kennels.

Later, when Murch learned of Sharam junior’s interest in his dog he was happy enough to sign him over to the family.

Taking over the training was Stuey, back in the game after a break of more than 20 years, but looking like he had never left.

By the end of last year, Donny Rocks had won six races for his new kennel and one of those had been the Sharams’ first feature event – the Merry Masters over 305 metres on Christmas Cup day.

Last Sunday, he was chasing his first win this year when lining up from box eight in another feature event for older greyhounds – the Commersh Masters over 305 metres.

Masters events cater for dogs over 3¾ years.

Donny Rocks is only a couple of months away from turning five years of age.

The oldest runner in the Commersh was Kerry Hawker’s Nero Valentino, now 5½ years of age, but last year’s Mount Gambier Greyhound of the Year.

The greyhound with the most starts to her name was the Annette Kampman owned and trained Myola Sunrise who lined up for start number 153.

Liam Sharam would have felt well pleased with himself as Donny Rocks took up the running off the back before striding away to a four-length win over Gladki in 17.49 seconds – a good run for a greyhound of any age.

At the other end of the age scale was Kampman’s 18-month-old first starter Myola Thalia in the Winning Post Supplies Maiden Stake (305m).

Away slowly from box seven, the daughter of Aussie Infrared and Undercover Boss quickly put herself in the race before scoring a head win over Peachy Keen in 18.58 seconds.

“We picked up Myola Thalia as a giveaway about three months ago,” Kampman said.

“Prior to racing on the track she had a couple of runs at the coursing in Victoria at Lang Lang, where she was runner-up and also contested a stake at Longwood.”

Meanwhile, Price brought up his 34th win with members of the Need My Moneynow x Wild Marilyn litter when Wilder led all the way for a 4¼ length win over Rough Girl Slim in the Cadillac Racing Stake (400m) in a quick 22.90 seconds.

The win was the black dog’s seventh in a 21-start career and gave his new owners Sarah Price, Garry Harding and Brooklyn Winterfield a quick return on their modest investment.

Most successful of the litter so far has been Wild Banker, a winner of 15 races which includes this year’s $10,000 Summer Classic (512m) at Tara Raceway and the Murray Bridge Straight Track Cup (350m).

Portland trainer Nicole Stanley flew into Mount Gambier on Sunday afternoon and arrived at Tara Raceway just in time to see her charge My Boy Josh lead all the way in the Exchange Printers Stake (400m) for a 4½ length win over Cricket Tragic in 23.00 seconds.

She had been among the 53,000 crowd at Adelaide Oval on Friday night who witnessed the Matildas secure a 1-1 draw against China.

A son of Bernardo and Looks Like Turbo, My Boy Josh was also reared at Portland, along with litter brother Keanu Boy Turbo, by Stanley and co-trainer Nifty Lenehan who handled the red fawn dog on Sunday.

“Both dogs have been more than handy for the Shantothemax Syndicate which is managed by Jason Farrell,” Stanley said.

“I had previously trained for the syndicate and they are great to deal with.”