David Brasch     833 Stewarts River Road  Lorne. NSW. 2439    Email - david@pedigreesbydesign.com
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EXAMPLES - Queen Size ... her damline
TIM Billin will be 73 in April and these days the life-long greyhound man takes little interest in the happenings on racetracks.
But Tim and wife Eva still take pride in knowing the breed they helped shape is still helping to shape racing in this country.
Uppermost is the deeds of Made To Size (Surf Lorian-Queen Size) who only recently smashed the Albion Park track record running 29.61 to topple "the hardest track record in the country".
"29.61?," asked Tim amazed that dogs had got that quick in the four or five years since he gave up training.
Made To Size traces directly to a bitch called Crescent Gold, a daughter of Tempix-Pancho Girl, which Tim raced back in the early 1980s.
"I got her from my sister Doreen Mooy who had bought her at 12 months of age from John Costigan at Tweed Heads," said Tim.
Her dam Pancho Girl (Benny McGrath-Classy Zoom) was a litter sister to top class Wentworth Park gallopers Solitary Zoom and Geoff's Bank. Pancho Girl had been a finalist in both the Australian Cup and Sandown Laurels.
Their dam Classy Zoom was a sister to the legendary Zoom Top (Black Top-Busy Beaver).
Both Geoff's Bank and Solitary Zoom were record holders at Wentworth Park.
"Doreen started trialling Crescent Gold around Beenleigh and one morning she absolutely flew," said Tim. "She started to get offers to buy her and one was for $2000.
"I told my sister I would give her $2000 for Crescent Gold and an extra $1000 out of her first win."
Doreen sold the magnificent fawn bitch to Tim and true to his word he sent her an extra $1000 when she won first up at Grafton.
Tim named her after the street where they lived, Crescent Avenue at Hope Island.
But Crescent Gold would win only a handful of races.
"I backed her at the old Southport track one day but got someone else to handle her and she missed the kick," said Tim. "I was broke so when she was in the next week I organized to get my wife Eve a handler's license and she took her to the boxes.
"I got $1000 from my credit card and backed her at 10-1 and she won. We bought ourselves a trip to Fiji with the winnings."
Tim was great mates with legend dog man Stan Cleverly. "I'd met him at Wyong back in 1959," said Tim. "And we stayed friend from then on.
"In fact, I took Crescent Gold to Sydney to be checked over by Jack Irwin, on the same trip Stan took The Journalist which he had bought for $20,000 back in the early 1980s.
"We trialled them together the next day and The Journalist just beat her on the line. She was that good."
Crescent Gold earned herself a career as a broodbitch by almost running the track record at Beenleigh in one of her wins.
"She was a very, very good bitch with a fantastic pedigree, magnificent looks and a beautiful temperament," said Tim.
At stud Crescent Gold had litters to Wild Port, Hardell, Nation Parade, Pretty Short and Pretty Fearless and the winners soon started to flow.
"When the Pretty Short litter was being reared we had a block of land near our home at Logan Central and we reared our pups there," said Tim. "She had 10 pups to Pretty Short and one day they all got our and bolted into the nearby bush.
"We couldn't find them.
"But after a week two of them came back, then a few days another couple came home and so on until they all turned up.
"That was a really good litter."
It included Our Gold Coin who would win the 1990 Ipswich Auction final.
Also from that litter was Eastern Rose who Tim would sell to long-time friend Ben Nowlan. She would win at Wentworth Park.
At stud Eastern Rose would produce (to Acacia Ablaze) a dog called Pride Of Stef who would also win the Ipswich Auction final, in 1995.
"In fact I should have sold four winners of the Auction final," said Tim.
"Chip And Charge was a Pretty Fearless-Crescent Gold dog Maureen Culey bought from me and gave to her daughter Kellee who is now married to Matt Hayden.
"He led for home in a Auction final but dropped a back muscle.
"And Refuel (a grandson of Crescent Gold) ran four tracks records and was in fabulous form for Mick Zammit but got hurt just before the series.
"No one has sold two winners of the Auction final."
Among the daughters of Crescent Gold was a Nation Parade bitch called Crescent Queen.
Tim had loaned her to Ben Nowlan for a litter.
"Ben approached Sam Apap for a service to Ultravana with her and Sam was to get a pup from the litter," said Tim.
"When it came time for Sam to pick his pup, he went for a red fawn bitch. But after a week, Sam didn't like the bitch so he came back to Ben wanting to exchange her.
"Ben was out so Sam just put the red fawn bitch back in with the others and picked another. Ben and Sam had a real blow-up about it and Ben made him take that red fawn bitch back."
The bitch would be named Ultra Queen and she would become the dam of Short Model (by Deep North) one of the best gallopers of his time and a multiple Group winner.
Short Model won the Group 1 Winter Carnival Cup at Albion Park and was a greyhound of the year finalist for Tom Patterson.
His sister Queen Size was bought from Sam Apap by Julie Edmondson and has become one of the country's foremost broodbitches ... dam of Made To Size.
Crescent Gold lived to 13.
Tim Billin was born into greyhound racing.
His father Sam had been a leading thoroughbred trainer in Sydney training the winner of the Prince Of Wales Cup at Victoria Park.
Sam Billin also gave a then young apprentice Neville Sellwood his first ride on a city track.
"Dad was also a boxer and fought then Australian heavyweight champion Colin Bell three times for a win, a draw and a loss," said Tim.
"Mum had moved out when I was young and my dad got in touch with me when I was 21.
"He was training greyhounds at the time and had a dog called Sunset Again who had won the Armidale Cup. In the early 1960s we took him to Wyong and that's where I met Stan Cleverly.
"Sunset Again was beaten that day by a champion dog called Tamaroo."
Tamaroo won 42 races and set seven track records.
"I bought Sunset Again from my dad and won a lot of races with him. He had a double cross of Chief Havoc and looked just like him."
Tim's influence on bloodines in this state have been far reaching.
"I bred a litter by Mister Moss from Top Finance and sold a bitch to Kevin and Bill Branud," he said.
"A few weeks later they brought her back because she was not well, so I gave them another pup as replacement. The Braunds asked me what I was going to do with the bitch that was crook and then asked if they could take her as well.
"I gave the bitch to them and she ended up being Speedy Getaway who was a Gabba winner and then produced Bollacky Barry and High Monakii."
Bollacky Barry finished second to Acclaim Star in the National Sprint at Cannington while High Monakii won the Gabba Gold Cup.
He got Top Finance when living in Sydney.
"I was training three dogs for a group of owners but they ran into money problems and told me to get rid of the dogs and keep whatever I got from the sale to pay the bills," said Tim.
"I decided to keep Top Finance myself.
"I won a race at orange with her one day and she ran faster time that Tara Flash did on the same day."
He also raced a bitch called Eva Joan, named after his wife. She ran a distance record at Tweed Heads, ran a track record at Casino and was just outside a track record at Dapto.
These days greyhound racing is just a memory for Tim and Eva.
"I've become an Internet fan, and about five or six years ago took up a form of Karate called Aikido," he said.
(Albion Park track photographer Corey Pearce can atest to Tim's proficiency at his art. A few simple moves by Tim and Corey was in pain and pleading for release.)
"I only stopped in August last year but have been instructing since."
Tim and Eva live a quiet life these days.
The greyhound legacy they have left is anything but quiet.