TWO speedy sausage dogs have emerged victorious at the famous Port Fairy Winter Weekends Dachshund Dash.
Dubbed the 'Melbourne Cup of dog racing' the 13th annual dash saw crowds flock in the hundreds to the Port Fairy event on Sunday to cheer on the canines as they madly dashed, leapt and sniffed their way to the finish line.
The enthusiasm of the low-tummied athletes was equally matched by their owners as they battled it out for the title of the top dog.
Over 2 winner's comeback from 2018 bungle
Defiant dachshund Cisco, 2, of Warrnambool took out first place in the Over 2 category, a win unexpected by his owners after he ran the wrong way and came last in the 2018 grand final.
"We're all in shock," Cisco's proud owner Heidi Gass said following the win.
"We entered last year and he made it to the grand final and came last.
"We didn't have high hopes because he ran the wrong direction last year."
Cisco has been on a stringent training regime in the lead up to the dash, led by Heidi's son Flynn, 6.
"My six year old Flynn who adores him instigates a lot of the training," Heidi said.
"He does lots of running on the beach and practice running back and forth using a few treats as temptations and rewards.
"We also have a border collie which we think is why he is quite fast, because he's always chasing the border collie."
Heidi and her family, who have lived in Warrnambool all their lives, enjoyed the Port Fairy Winter Weekends events.
"The dash is so much fun, it's hilarious and you get to meet lots of other dog owners," Ms Gass said.
"Everyone is in it for the fun, it's not about the competition side of things, it's about the hilarity of it.
"It's awesome hearing the crowd roar and laugh as the dogs run."
Under 2 champion Peanut proved his might
Don't be fooled by his name and stature, Peanut the dachshund, of Kew showed his bite, taking out the spot as top dog in the Under 2 Dachschund Dash.
Owners Mario and Kerrie West made the trip down from the city to show the country hounds how it's done, travelling down on Saturday and staying overnight at Tower Hill before the big race.
"It was really good, he's all tired now," Mr West said.
"We knew he was quick, but he gets distracted very easily so we thought he might have had a hard time running in a straight line.
"Today he was lucky and just beat the competition."
The pair simulated the race with Peanut at their local park.
"My wife was at the other end of the race because when we practice at the park he always runs to her, he's a mummy's boy," Mr West said.
"At the start it was a bit overwhelming for him, but some other dogs which he plays with on a daily basis came from Kew, so he was a lot calmer when he saw them."
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