Perth Cup Trainer Issues Warning To Rivals

Ima Wagtail looms as a genuine chance to give, John Iwanyk, his first success in the Group 1 Sky Racing Perth Cup (520m) at Cannington on Saturday.

The Nambeelup trainer has been a mainstay of WA greyhound racing for a number of years, but victory in its premier race has eluded his grasp.

The likelihood of that scenario changing for Iwanyk is highly encouraging after Ima Wagtail scored one of the most impressive heat wins last week.

The son of Oaks Road and Aella, unbeaten this year, extended his winning sequence to three when he crossed from the pink box to lead throughout.

Iwanyk has been surprised as anyone by Ima Wagtails’ emergence, but in a warning to rivals he believes there is room for further improvement.

“He just amazes me because I don’t know how good the dog really is,” Iwanyk said on TABradio.

“When he started in the heats he hadn’t had a run for 2 ½ weeks because the previous meeting was postponed.

“It was quite amazing for a dog to come out and run that time (29.97sec.) with such a break between runs.

“Every time he goes around he gets better and better and if he leads he is a definite chance of winning.

“He has performed admirably and I’m just rapt with the way he is going.”

If Iwanyk need an added confidence boost he received a large dose of it when Ima Wagtail drew the coveted red box, the most successful draw in Perth Cup history.

Since 1976 when the first edition of the race was stagged, 11 greyhounds have won from pole position with Victorian raider, Betty’s Angel the previous in 2007.

“You couldn’t ask for a better box draw,” Iwanyk said.

“He is a reasonably good beginner and has every chance.”

Ima Wagtail is $5 with the TAB. Victorian representative, Blazin’ Bomber, trained by former first class cricketer, Darren Pattinson, holds $2.35 favouritism.

Blazin’ Bomber, to jump from box three, earned his position at the head of the market after defeating Moreira in the quickest heat time.