2017 BetAmerica Daytona 550 Field is Set

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Chantal Variot

January 5th, 2017

The 2015 All-American Seldom Told heads the field for the $45,000 BetAmerica Daytona 550. He will face seven of the country’s fastest and most talented greyhounds on January 21 at the Daytona Beach Racing and Card Room. By that evening’s end, the “quest to crown the best” will have been completed, and a new National Champion crowned.

Seldom Told will be making his second appearance in this invitational stakes. Last year, trouble in the first turn prevented Told from running “his” race. Now racing out of Bestbet Orange Park, the 84-pounder will make the short return trip to Daytona with stake championships at both the 5/16 and 3/8 distances to his credit this year. He is owned by Sharon Williams and runs for the DQ Williams Kennel. The Williams connection will be shooting for back-to-back National Championships as they won with Need My Moneynow in January this year.

Seldom Told will be facing a formidable field which includes some impressive younger pups and some talented veterans. It is also a field dominated by female sprinters. The only other male entered is Kinda Cruel Red from Wheeling Island, via the Palm Beach Kennel Club. His 27 wins in 2016 are bested only by Seldom Told (34) among the BetAmerica Daytona 550 participants. Red is owned by Edward Piziak, Jr. and runs out of the Jacobs Racing kennel.
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Leading the list of females entered in the BetAmerica Daytona 550 are Southland’s Oaks Maddy and the Naples-Fort Myers standout Martha Maccallum. Oaks Maddy also began her career at Palm Beach, and is the only auto qualifier for the 550. She won the BetAmerica Kings vs. Queens Classic defeating the best greyhounds at Southland, and will most likely be one of the favorites at post time in this year’s BetAmerica Daytona 550. Maddy is owned by Mick Hymes and is handled by the Gloria Dorsey Kennel. Owned by Anthony Napolitano Jr. and the Brindle Kennel, Martha Maccallum has won 27 of her 35 career starts in the Flagler/Naples circuit. She has been off the board only twice in her career, and that record should also make Martha one of the betting favorites.

RF River, owned by Alan Hill and Joni Recinos, won the lucrative Iowa Breeders Cup. She moved to Mardi Gras, and has looked impressive on the South Florida oval. This is another one of the blossoming younger pups entered, and her recent performances say she is ready for the big stage. Superior Kennel is her home.

The female veteran is Derby Lane’s GT’s Gin N Juice. Juice punched her ticket to the national championship race with an impressive eight race winning streak during the months of October and November. She has tailed off in recent starts, but the Abernathy Kennel has had success in Daytona. You can expect GT’s Gin N Juice to be ready to go on January 21. Juice is owned by Thomas Wayne Cunningham.

The two remaining entries are Kentucky Kat (Derby Lane) and Jd Accomplice (Mardi Gras). They moved into the field when Varoom Esme and Mac’s Harewood were scratched. Kentucky Kat won the Weaver Memorial at Derby Lane, and after being off for some time, has come back strong winning five straight. She runs out of the Cal Holland Kennel and is owned by C. Don Godby. JD Accomplice broke in at the Iowa Greyhound Park, and quickly moved to the Grade A ranks. She has won six of her eight starts at Mardi Gras and will be heading to Daytona as one of our sport’s rising stars. She is owned by Jon Stidham, and handled by the Brindle Kennel.

by Michael Frino