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Monday, October 17, 2022

Lester Raines Kennel’s RS’s Dark Night tops all qualifiers for the Friday afternoon, Oct. 21, championship final of the $65,000 West Virginia Greyhound Owners and Breeders Association Panhandle Championship at Wheeling Island.

RS’s Dark Night posted his third consecutive victory Sunday afternoon in the semifinal round, bumping his point total to 45. The sprinter was the only greyhound to make it through the early rounds undefeated.

Completing the championship final field are CET Dirty Dan (Steve Sarras), 40 points; CET Barracuda (Imark), 36 points; CET Fernando (Imark), 30 points; CET Marlin (Imark), 27 points; RS’s Railhauler (Lester Raines), 24 points; RS’s Dunkindylan (Lester Raines) and CET Tiger Boy (Steve Sarras), 23 points each.

RS’s Happyharper (Lester Raines) and TS Pretty Boy (Steve Sarras) both had 23 points but lost the tie-breaker as RS’s Dunkindylan and CET Tiger Boy posted victories in the qualifying rounds.

Capsule looks at the semifinal races follow:

RS’s Dark Night rushed to an early lead and pulled away to a 9 ½-length victory in 29.96. CET Fernando finished second while RS’s Railhauler rounded out the trifecta ticket.

CET Barracuda broke on top early and never challenged in posting a 6 ½-length victory in 30.50. CET Dirty Dan was second followed by RS’s Blue Heaven.

CET Marlin took charge early in racing to a 5 ½-length victory in 30.13. RS’s Happyharper came in second while Mac’s Sidnyjames settled for third.

Points after the semifinal round (the top eight greyhounds advance to the stake final):

RS’s Dark Night (Lester Raines), 45 points

CET Dirty Dan (Steve Sarras), 40 points

CET Barracuda (Imark), 35 points

CET Fernando (Imark), 30 points

CET Marlin (Imark), 27 points

RS’s Railhauler (Lester Raines), 24 points

CET Tiger Boy (Steve Sarras), 23 points RS’s Dunkindylan (Lester Raines), 23 points

(The following greyhounds were eliminated from the stakes event).

TS Pretty Boy (Steve Sarras), 23 points RS’s Happyharper (Lester Raines), 23 points

Mac’s Sidnyjames (A Ray), 19 points

RS’s Super Freak (Lester Raines), 18 points

CET Dirty Mike (Steve Sarras), 17 points

RS’s Blue Heaven (Lester Raines), 14 points CET Sashaligotti (Steve Sarras), 14 points

GLS Blondie (Jacobs Racing), 13 points

RS’s Power House (Lester Raines), 11 points

Rico’s Hell Yeah (A Ray), 7 points

CET Musketeer (Steve Sarras), 6 points

I was introduced to greyhound racing by a friend in the late 1970s at Wheeling Downs and fell in love with the sport and the athletes immediately. Throughout the years, I have developed a deep passion for racing. In the mid 1990s, I started writing a weekly greyhound column and shortly thereafter became a writer for The Greyhound Review.

I have enjoyed watching and writing about these wonderful competitors, including All-Americans DD's Nelson, Kiowa Sweet Trey, Gene's Champion, WW Apple Jax, Greys Royalcrown, Nimby TP Jan, Hi Noon Hero, Gable Sour Cream, KB's Ruckus and Cry Case.