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Patriot wins kennel title at Derby Lane

Published Jan. 3, 2015

ST. PETERSBURG — Kb's Moniter has one career win. That victory was the spark to Patriot winning another kennel championship at Derby Lane.

Patriot wrapped up its fourth overall win title Wednesday with a dominant close to the six-month meet. Led by kennel manager-trainer Cal Holland Jr., Patriot pulled away for a 306-285 victory over Abernathy. Burk Greyhounds was third at 277.

The maiden victory by Kb's Moniter on Nov. 22 enabled Patriot to snap a 234-234 tie with Abernathy, igniting a surge that saw the kennel win 72 races in its final 44 performances. During that span, the operation had at least one victory on 35 cards, including 22 multiple-win performances. Patriot wound up with more than 200 more starts than any competitor over 209 performances.

Holland, 49, has been on board for three of Patriot's titles (his first two came in 2012). He missed the first four months of the 2014 Derby Lane season while managing a kennel at Wheeling Island, W. Va.

"For me to come back to run, and getting my daughters (Jenna and Patricia) working for me meant a lot," Holland said. "My biggest focus was to win this for them. … They've never experienced (a title).

"We take care of our dogs the best that we possibly can. It's numbers that will beat you, and that's what it took for us (to win) with as many starts as we had."

Patriot is owned by Vinny and Phyllis Savill of Whitman, Mass.

Other meet highlights: Abernathy's Husker Magic, who has been invited to the Daytona 550 National Championship on Jan. 24 at Daytona Beach Kennel Club, was the top dog with 29 wins from 44 starts.

Best times were clocked by Capabal kennel's Joey Ice (30.05 seconds at 550 yards) and Cal Holland's Penrose Kyle (36.86 at 660).

MORE GREYHOUNDS: Barbara McAllister, 61, wife of Derby Lane kennel owner Malcolm McAllister, died of an undisclosed cause on Dec. 24. … Two kennels have new trainers: Aaron Barsell with McAllister and Louis Amaral with Lashmet. … Connell Kennels has joined the roster with Alex Hall as its trainer. … The first stakes race of Derby Lane's 90th season is tonight with the $8,000 Inaugural (Race 10, 9:47). Defending champion Kiowa Jordan Doc of Pauline O'Donnell kennel goes for his 50th lifetime win for manager-trainer John Graham. The 2013 All-America pick reached two milestones in his last victory on Dec. 27: surpassing $100,000 in earnings and clocking a career-best time of 30.25 at 550 yards.

HORSES: Tampa Bay Downs rider Antonio Gallardo capped a breakout year with a sixth-place finish in the 2014 North American win standings with 268. Oldsmar trainer Jamie Ness ranked 12th with 167 victories, and his major client, Midwest Thoroughbreds, was the top owner with 219 wins. Kathleen O'Connell was the second leading female conditioner with 101 victories, tied for 34th overall.

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