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Whippets run wild

It was a wet and slippery weekend, but the dogs didn't seem to mind one bit.

It was a wet and slippery weekend, but the dogs didn't seem to mind one bit.

The Centennial Fields at Brennan Park were host to a bevy of whippet races on Saturday and Sunday, and although the rain kept the speedy canines from smashing any records, the event was nonetheless another success.

"We had an extremely successful weekend," said race director Penny Wilmot. "On Saturday, over 40 dogs raced and today we had more than 30."

Saturday's ultra-fast 200-metre straight sprint saw the dogs racing from start to finish in about 11 seconds.

The fastest dog in that event was Oregon's Stuart, owned by Adrianne Basset. He clocked in at 11.4 seconds in his fastest race, and claimed the overall title based on his aggregate point total in four races entered. Second place went to Cooper from Walnut Creek, Calif., while Darwin, owned by Shawn Eldridge from Vancouver, Wash, took home the bronze.

"The times were a bit slow because of the damp track," said Wilmot. "But it didn't deter anything. It was warm and sprinkling but the grounds are in such excellent condition - everything was fine."

In Sunday's longer 300-metre oval races, more than 30 dogs took to the field to chase the little white "bunny" around the track, including Squamish's own Juno, a local whippet who is new to the racing world.

Juno finished second in her category, an excellent result for her one of her first appearances on the track, and her first-ever racing on the oval.

Sunday's top dog went undefeated, a perfect 4-0, to capture top spot on the podium. Alcaeus, owned by Merril Woolf from Sonoma, Calif., took first place in each of the four races entered.

Second place overall went to Morganna, an impressive result considering it was only her second time on the oval track. Dooley, owned by Elaine Nakatsu from Vancouver, took third.

The dogs seemed to like the track, and their owners agreed.

"Everybody appreciates coming up here to run," said Wilmot. "The competitors are thrilled to race in Squamish and look forward to the big one - the International meet, next year."