Former New South Wales trainer Steve White rose to prominence in greyhound racing courtesy of megastar Paua To Burn’s lofty racetrack deeds.
Paua To Burn’s dual Sapphire Crown Classic (2004 & 2005) victories, plus wins in the 2005 Golden Easter Egg, 2004 Laurels, 2005 Temlee and 2006 Rookie Rebel, elevated her to demigod status in the sport. In fact, she was inducted into the AGRA-GCA Hall of Fame in 2007.
White packed his bags for Victoria in 2015 and ‘set up shop’ among the picturesque landscape of Buln Buln East in Gippsland.
Since then, White has gone from strength-to-strength in the sport – particularly with retired superstar and now sire Sennachie whose first pups are only two weeks old.
A nine-time group race finalist, Sennachie won 18 races from 32 starts – including three Group 1 events – and amassed $701,450 in stakes for his South Australian owners.
White also trains emerging talent Paua Of Oscar, who has won four races from six starts. He equalled retired champion Aston Bolero’s Warragul 400-metre track record at only his third start. Paua Of Oscar’s maternal great grand-dam is Paua To Burn.
But these days, the star of the group race show for White is versatile performer Tauwitchere who will contest a heat of the prestigious Group 1 Sandown Cup (715m) on Thursday night.
She’ll line up in Race 4, Box 3 at 7.10pm and is pitted against G1 star True Detective (Box 1), top staying prospect Captain Dynamite (Box 4) and Ella Enchanted (Box 7), who was runner-up to Rajasthan in last year’s Sandown Cup.
More recognised as a middle-distance star, Tauwitchere (Jan ’17 Dyna Double One x Irish Keepsake) has won 19 races from 45 starts, with $263,280 in prizemoney.
Last year, she won the G2 Launching Pad (515m) at Sandown and finished third in the G1 Sale Cup (650m). She was also a finalist in the G1 Maturity Classic (525m) at The Meadows won by Sennachie. And this year, she was a finalist in the G1 Rookie Rebel (600m).
Tauwitchere strung together five straight wins prior to her past three starts which have all been at Sandown over the 715-metre staying trip. Fair to say, she hasn’t set the world on fire – finishing fifth, second and fourth respectively.
Pawnote: White purchased a seven-acre Buln Buln East property, which was formerly owned by late Gippsland greyhound icon Len Poore and his late wife Kath. He knew the greyhound complex well, having enjoyed the Poores hospitality during Victorian campaigns with Paua To Burn. White named “Paua Kennels” as a mark of respect for Paua To Burn.
“She’s been a bit disappointing over the distance, but we’ve put in the hard yards,” White said. “We’ve come this far, so it’s another crack to see what happens.”
“She’s clean winded but a very excitable type… The key to her is, get out and go,” White added. “But I’ll freshen her up and drop her back in distance if she fails to impress.”
But White paid an ultimate accolade to Tauwitchere, rating her the most versatile greyhound he has trained since Paua To Burn.