BRIAN Smoothy carved himself a slice of history at Taree Greyhound Club's most recent TAB meeting.
The Killawara trainer finished with four winners - and this is understood to be a first for the Kanangra Drive track. Club officials assure it is certainly the best performance by a local trainer.
So Smoothy is the Manning River Times-Iguana Sports Award winner, earning a $50 open order at Iguana.
"I trained four winners once before at Wauchope,'' Smoothy said.
"But to train four at a TAB meeting against better class dogs - that's the best I've done.''
Smoothy started his assault with Trebojevic, a dog he trains for close mate Chris Black and that was one of the most satisfying of the day.
"The dog's always had ability but he's been a bit temperamental lately,'' Smoothy explained.
He followed that up with consecutive wins in the sixth, seventh and eighth races with Zambora Star, Double Dream and It's Spring Time. This was It's Spring Time's 19th win.
He's been in the training game for around 14 years.
"I was working at the abs (Wingham Abattoirs) and George Zara was a good mate of mine. He was always into the dogs and I just thought training was something I'd like to get into,'' Smoothy recalled.
Then fate intervened.
"I was at the dogs at Taree and I bought tickets in a raffle. The first prize was a dog and I won. So I started training from there.''
The dog, Tallowood Prince, went onto win 15 races.
"He was born on my birthday and he went on to win his last race on my 50th birthday,'' Smoothy laughed.
He said Tallowood Prince is among the best he's trained. Gracie Seymour - his first winner at Wentworth Park - also has special place along with the current star, It's Spring Time.
Smoothy said he travels 'plenty of miles' taking his dogs to meetings around the State.
"Some dogs race better at certain tracks,'' he explained.
However, he added it was 'terrific news' earlier this year when it was announced Taree would conduct TAB meetings.
"Having a TAB track that's just 20 minutes away - where the first prizemoney is $1500 has been a big boost,'' Smoothy said.
He currently has 12 dogs in work and he says this is normal.
Training is a family affair, with Smoothy assisted by his wife along with his sister and brother-in-law.
Smoothy fully acknowledges that greyhound racing has received bad publicity over the years. He's pleased that measures have been introduced to stamp out cruelty and he applauds moves to ensure dogs are re-homed once their racing days are over.
"Greyhounds are fantastic pets,'' he assured.
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