After four entertaining semi-finals at Dawson Park on Saturday night, the final field for the 2023 Greyhound Racing NSW Country Classic has been decided.
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Dawson Park hosted a massive 12-race meeting but all eyes were on the four semi-finals in the middle of the evening which gave runners the chance to qualify for the $125,000 final next weekend.
In the opening semi-final, Valor Bale ($3.70) and Grim Madara ($5.50) tied for the win, meaning both runners advance.
Trained Mark Delbridge, Valor Bale missed the start badly and had a lot of work to do in the 605m if they were going to ask any questions of the leaders.
But the greyhound showed wonderful speed across the back straight before gliding up inside to tie with Grim Madara.
Jodie Lord's Grim Madara led the race from the start after jumping out of box eight and was impressive early, putting several lengths on the rest of the field but slowed up late to be caught by Valor Bale.
It was a much more one-sided race in the semi-final with Tania Keeping ($5) winning for John and Melinda Finn.
Jumping out of box four, Tania Keeping put together a fine race and only got stronger the longer the run went on to win by six lengths and book a spot in the final.
Glenn Dainton's Jackpot Joan finished in second to also secure a spot in the final.
Jodie Lord will have a second runner in next weekend's final after Bandit Jane won the third semi-final on Saturday.
Lord's runner was impressive right out of the gates to cruise home by three lengths ahead of Showman Jack.
Nangar Rocket won the fourth and final semi-final of the night by four lengths ahead of Ailee Bale.
The top two finishing runners from each semi-final will race in the $125,000 final on Saturday night at Dawson Park while Zipping Alabama and Zipping Orland have been named as reserves.
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