Ebby Ripper’s rise through the greyhound racing staying ranks continued on Thursday night as she put on a galloping exhibition to blitz her rivals at her Sandown Park debut.
Arriving from Sydney earlier in the afternoon, Ebby Ripper showed no ill effects from the 10-hour trip, jumping cleanly from box six to sit outside early leader Dundee Calypso through the first turn.
The pair cleared out from the field with Ebby Ripper stalking the lamplighter for an entire lap before maker her move down the back straight. She drew level at the final mark before powering away to win by seven and a quarter lengths.
“I couldn’t be happier with her,” said her delighted trainer, Michael Eberand.
“She normally gets back so I was looking for her early and couldn’t find her.
“Then I looked up the front and there she was – second – so I was a bit shocked and pleasantly surprised.”
The win was her fourth consecutive victory and the tenth of her 25 start career.
Her winning time of 41.68 was the fastest over the distance since Burn One Down – widely regarded as the country’s best stayer – ran 41.37 in August 2016.
Eberand is confident his exciting stayer has further improvement ahead of her.
“Her run-home times at Wenty are out of this world, probably up there with (dual Sandown Cup winner) Sweet It Is.
“We know she is strong, she’s only just turned two (on 9 February) and she’s learning all the time.”
Eberand is no stranger to preparing and travelling with a stayer.
He raced Ebby Ripper’s mother, Ebby Miss, who, despite winning just four races in her 55 race career, reached four group finals.
Two of those finals were are at Sandown Park, including the 2011 group 1 Bold Trease final in which she finished fourth.
“I’ve used the lead from that race every week, for luck,” he said, proudly showing off the souvenir leather lead.
While Ebby Miss was unable to win at the sport’s highest level, Eberand is aiming high with her talented daughter.
She’ll face the stiffest test of her young career at her next start when she lines up in a heat of the group 1 Super Stayers at The Meadows on Saturday 25 February.
While guarded about her chances in her first attempt at that level, Eberand was clear about her ultimate goal.
“The Sandown Cup – that’s definitely the plan, that’s why we’re here tonight.”
The RSN Racing and Sport Sandown Cup is the world’s richest race for stayers, carrying $250,000 in prize money and will be run on Thursday 25 May.

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