PUNTERS were left stunned at the Gawler Greyhound Racing Club last week when one runner, Victa Ollie, crossed the finishing post paying a massive $135-to-one dividend on the TAB.
While the club doesn’t keep records of winning odds, it is believed to be right up there as one of the biggest long shots to triumph at the track.
In the penultimate race on the program – a 400m event for grade four and five greyhounds – Victa Ollie bounced out straight to the front from box three to lead Eustace Road (four) and Rebel Contender (six).
Victa Ollie extended the lead from an initial two lengths, and the rest of the field just couldn’t get close, with Victa Ollie hitting the line four lengths clear in the time of 23.05 seconds.
Rebel Contender ran second for Lewiston’s Kevin Bewley, with High Eden Frost in third spot for Eden Valley’s Jan Jones.
It wasn’t until after the race that everyone saw the huge odds at which Victa Ollie had started.
There was a feeling of disbelief, but the TAB confirmed the dividend as being correct.
Even Sue Schadow, Victa Ollie’s handler, was shocked to see the price.
While the brindle dog’s recent form had been below normal expectations, he was having his first start from a short break due to a minor foot injury.
Last week wasn’t the dog’s first success, having triumphed 12 times along with numerous placings.
Trained at Victor Harbor by Ron Schadow, “Ollie” is one of a number of greyhounds bred by Ron from his prominent breeding lines.
The dog was handled on the day by Ron’s daughter, Sue, who likes to help her father out by transporting the greyhounds to the track.
Ollie is a favourite of Sue’s as he has a wonderful nature, and is an allround “beaut-dog”.
Sue likes to help her father, as he has 19 pups and racing dogs to look after, as well as occasionally getting to the track.
Ron also has other litters he has bred, placed with other trainers, including the well-performed Victa Louise, which has an exceptional record of 16 wins from just 21 race starts.
And, did Sue think Ollie could win on Tuesday?
“No, but there is always hope”, she said.