Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Fall Sprint at Derby Lane could be finale for track favorites

ST. PETERSBURG — If the $50,000 Fall Sprint turns out to be the "last hurrah" for Derby Lane favorites Aerial Battle and Flying Coal City, track racing secretary Jerry Miller says don't forget about the men who got the dogs this far: kennel owners Henry Parker and Malcolm McAllister.

"I love to see people handle their nice greyhounds the way that (Parker and McAllister) have," Miller said. "Henry is extremely patient and makes sure his dogs are right before he does anything with them. Malcolm is not afraid to pull a dog off (the active list) and give him what he needs to try to get his confidence back. You've got good dogs and good people handling them."

The fifth annual Fall Sprint begins tonight with qualifying in Races 4, 6, 8 and 10. It is Derby Lane's first stakes of the meet.

Joining Aerial Battle (Capabal kennel) and defending champion Flying Coal City (McAllister) as top threats in the 32-dog field are track wins leader Jw Titleist (Capabal), St. Petersburg Derby winner Storm Rush (Hambleton) and Fall Juvenile winner Uss Gazillionair (Lester Raines). Two-time stakes winner Hi Noon Renegade (Nova) is out with an injury. Four 550-yard qualifying rounds precede the Oct. 1 final. First place pays $22,000.

"This is going to be one of the better, competitive tournaments that I've run in the last few years," Miller said. "There will be no four-round winner going into the final. It's going to be a bit of a survivor series until they hit the final."

The Fall Sprint could be the final stakes for Aerial Battle (Race 10) and Flying Coal City (Race 6). Aerial Battle turned 4 on Sept. 5, and Flying Coal City reaches that age in March. The pair recently returned from injuries. Aerial Battle, a winner of one stakes and lifetime earner of more than $57,000, has overcome a stopper bone issue and a sprained hock.

Shoulder problems have plagued Flying Coal City, who has five stakes wins and $148,115 in earnings. In 2010, Flying Coal City was awarded the industry's Triple Crown (All-America captain, Rural Rube for top sprinter, and Flashy Sir for distance).

While Flying Coal City has achieved more status than Aerial Battle, their careers are mirror images. Aerial Battle won his 60th Grade A race Wednesday, raising his career victory total to 66. Flying Coal City has totaled 63 wins, 56 at Grade A (22 in stakes). Both former track win leaders share the same career-high win streak of eight, and are 4-4 against each other in head-to-head meetings.

"They're both extremely seasoned greyhounds with excellent careers," Miller said. "This could be their last hurrah. … You never know."

STILL PERFECT: Derby Lane employee Radivoje (Rod) Kalajdzic, 20, raised his light-heavyweight professional boxing record to 2-0 with a 90-second knockout of Marlon Farr on Sept. 9 in Tampa.

Fall Sprint at Derby Lane could be finale for track favorites 09/16/11 [Last modified: Friday, September 16, 2011 8:48pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Aaron Hernandez had severe CTE; daughter sues NFL, Patriots


    BOSTON — Tests conducted on the brain of former football star Aaron Hernandez showed severe signs of the degenerative brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy, and his attorney said Thursday that the player's daughter is suing the NFL and the New England Patriots for leading Hernandez to believe the sport …

    Aaron Hernandez's lawyer says the former New England Patriots tight end's brain showed severe signs of the degenerative brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy. [AP photo]
  2. Bucs' Josh Robinson excited for return to Vikings


    For much of Josh Robinson's four seasons with the Vikings, there was excitement leading up to the arrival of the $1.1-billion U.S. Bank Stadium, which opened last season, just as Robinson signed with the …

    Josh Robinson (26) tackles Chicago punt returner Eddie Royal (19) during a game between the Bucs and Bears in 2016. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
  3. For starters: Rays at Orioles, meeting up with ex-mate Tim Beckham


    UPDATE, 6:05: Cash gave both CF Kevin Kiermaier and SS Adeiny Hechavarria a day off, noting they have been playing pretty much everyday. ... That also gave them a chance to look more at two of their younger position players, OF Mallex Smith and INF Daniel Robertson. ... Cash said he was happy for Beckham that he …

    Tim Beckham made a smashing debut with the Orioles, hitting .394 with six homers and 19 RBIs in August.
  4. From the archives: Account of famed Riggs-King match heightens Tampa mob intrigue


    With the Sept. 29 opening of "Battle of the Sexes" — the movie starring Emma Stone and Steve Carrell about Billie Jean King's landmark 1973 tennis win over Bobby Riggs — we thought there might be renewed interest in this 2013 Peter Jamison story from the Tampa Bay Times.

    Emma Stone as Billie Jean King and Steve Carell as Bobby Riggs in "Battle of the Sexes."  [Melinda Sue Gordon, Fox Searchlight Pictures]
  5. It's not a game, but the names are all the same in this football family


    TAMPA — A coach yells across the field into a scrum of blue-and-white clad football bodies at Jefferson High: "Kim Mitchell! Kim Mitchell, come here!"

    These twins are not only identical, but they have almost identical names. Kim Mitchell III, left, and Kim Mitchell IV are  talented football players at Jefferson High with Division I-A college offers. Kim  III wears No. 22 and plays cornerback while Kim IV wears No. 11 and plays safety. (Scott Purks, Special to the Times)