Richard Stamford has handled many top dogs during almost 50 years in greyhound racing but rates none higher than Stop Line, the hot favourite for Tuesday's Devonport Chase final.
"He's up there with the best, for sure" Stamford said about the remarkably consistent sprinter who has been backed from $3 to $1.60 to take home the $25,000 winner's cheque.
Stop Line has won 29 of his 47 starts and is a specialist on the Devonport track where he boasts 19 wins and eight placings from 28 starts.
It's a record that has Stamford comfortably comparing him with his past stars Double Time, Shantytown and Shantung Tiger who all won the Hobart Thousand.
"I've been lucky over the years, I've had a lot good dogs," said the man dubbed the 'Wizard Of Westbury' and a member of Tasmania's Greyhound Hall Of Fame.
Most of those good dogs he trained himself but Stop Line is a family affair. Stamford's wife Jillian is the trainer and he is the unofficial manager.
The dog was bred by Ted Medhurst and Debbie Cannan from a bitch (Topline Doovee) that they borrowed from Stamford's son Rodney.
Debbie and Rodney now share ownership.
Stamford said he wasn't sure whether Stop Line was entitled to be $1.60 in Devonport Chase betting but drawing the inside box was undoubtably a factor behind the heavy backing.
"It's hard to say whether he should be that short but I'd prefer to be drawn there than anywhere else," he said.
"Box 1 is always a head start even though he does seem to begin better from out wide.
"But the thing with him is that he won't go around a dog - he'll just keep persevering (for an inside run).
"He did that in his heat and it cost him a bit of ground, if anything, but he still won well."
The Stamford kennel has a handy back-up runner should luck not go Stop Line's way.
Leica Prayer dominated her heat by six lengths to complete a hat-trick of very easy Devonport wins.
However unlike her kennel-mate, she is not favourably drawn in box 5. She has won nine races but none from outside box 4.
Bookmakers consider Stanley Gordon, a winner of 12 of his 17 starts and three of four on the track, the main danger to Stop Line.
He is prepared by another Hall Of Fame trainer, Ted Medhurst, who is chasing his sixth win in the race.
His previous winners have been Blazenka's Flyer (1990), Supa Instinct (2005), Dark Vito (2015), Keune (2016) and High Treason (2018).
The Devonport Chase replaces the Devonport Cup but although it has a new name, timeslot and sponsor (Ladbrokes) it has retained its group 3 status.