14th February 2017
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Despite the bitterly cold snap we are experiencing at the moment our kennel has been in terrific form and last week we returned 9 open race winners from 24 runners, more importantly two of our big guns Ferryforth Fran and Rubys Razzle both qualified for the final of the first big Category 1 competition of 2017 namely the Ladbrokes Golden Jacket at Crayford.
The sleet and snow was coming down as I arrived at Crayford on Saturday morning and with seven runners I was hoping conditions didn't affect our chances, clearly the outside runners had a slight advantage though overall the track was in excellent condition. The three Ladbrokes Golden Jacket semi finals were as good a class as any major competition and I couldn't have been happier in the first semi when Rubys Razzle trapped smartly and led around the first two bends, she looked to have done enough to win the race but the flying Jaytee Patriot in trap 6 caught her on the line to win by 1/2 length in 45.45. A good run from Razzle nonetheless and it's great to see her continue her great form. The second semi final was again won by the trap 6 runner as Romany Rouge ran on to beat Jimbobjoe in 45.77. We had both Ferryforth Fran and Rubys Rascal in the 3rd semi final but it was Boylesports Star who led all the way to beat a game Ferryforth Fran by just over 3 lengths in 45.39 with Rubys Rascal just failing to qualify when 3rd. We drew trap 1 and 6 in the £17,500 to the winner final a week Tuesday and even though it's the best Jacket final I can remember both our runners are in with a chance, the fact they are in the final is fantastic enough itself.
In between the Golden Jacket semi finals we also had the trial stakes for the Peter Bussey Memorial competition that we have won for five consecutive years and judging by the wins from Airforce Duchess (34.11) and Roswell Roxanne (34.04) that may be a title we won't give up lightly. This event begins on Thursday and as well as the the two mentioned we will also have Ribble Aon (2nd to Airforce Duchess on Saturday) and defending champion Swift Whirlwind who is trialling back after a rest for a few weeks.
It was a sad day on Tuesday as Domino Storm left the kennel to go to the breeding paddocks. In this job it's easy to get attached to all the dogs and especially ones like 'Meryl', she had been with us for over 2 1/2 years and was without doubt a real character. When she first came to the kennel I thought Jesus! look at this tiny bitch with a huge overshot jaw. I have to admit I was surprised she trialled so well in her initial qualifying trials at Yarmouth, but pleased for the owners, Kieron King and his family, who brought her for their own personal reasons. The rest is history as they say and to be crowned 'Bitch of the Year' in successive years at the industry awards is unheard of in our sport. Obviously she is a much sort after bitch for the breeding paddocks and after discussions with Kieron we were keen to keep her litters as British Bred, hopefully she will be a real boost to British breeding. I respect many of our top breeders and a decision was made to send her to James Hayton who has been a revelation in our sport over the last few years, not just on the track with multiple big race winners but also with his pups that he has reared and schooled with great success. Jim accepted the offer of taking Domino Storm and she has settled into her new surroundings well and really we now wait until she comes into season. Whilst we wait we will be looking at the best available stud dog to mate her with. We have had plenty of people ask about the 'dream team' mating of Domino Storm and Billys Bullet as they were kennelled together here and though this won't be for her first litter all being well it's something that may well happen in the future.
Our action started on Tuesday with Garryglass Champ just being touched off by the fast Barricane Tiger at Towcester in a good 500m open. On Thursday a rare defeat for Ela Ela Genie at Hove in a minor sprint competition although we did come back with a winner when our other runner Shlowdown Sally took a maiden sprint in 16.45.
Our usual busy Friday night at Romford was successful again with 4 winners from 11 runners as win machine Clondoty Alex took a Golden Sprint trial stake coming from behind to win in 24.24. Mashmad Eyebrows led right until the line but was caught close home in the bitches 400m but the judge couldn't separate her and Wildfire Lin and a dead heat was recorded but it was still another win. It looked almost as tight again in the next race but this time the evergreen Calco Flyer got up to score by a short head in a very good 24.02. In the Friday Night 500 Maiden Stayers final over 575m Saffrons Tina won well when blasting out the traps and leading all the way to score by 2 1/2 lengths for the Markwallisgreyhounds Racing Club in 35.70, the official going of normal could easily have been 20 or 30 slow.
As said on Saturday morning we had a successful raid to Crayford while at night we had a few opens at Towcester. Adageo Gold lost his maiden tag winning a 500m Maiden in 29.64. Stellas Veekayee who's run in good company of late went off a generous 7/1 when landing the 686m open by a head in 42.49 to complete an excellent week for the kennel.
On Tuesday just the one winner from a handful of runners with Airforce Cluxton getting up on the line to score in a moderate 15.98. On Saturday morning again just the one winner with Cappoquin Jack taking an A4 in 28.60.
A good night on Saturday as Brynoffa Jasmine won her first race at the second time of asking beating Airforce Karla in 15.66, Shlowdown Sally took her second race in three days when winning the D1 in 15.55. As well as two open wins the night was completed by an excellent 5 lenth win by Muchas Gracias in an A5 in a very good 28.37.
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
On Thursday the Peter Bussey Memorial Trophy starts at Crayford and we have four runners bidding to win this event for a sixth consecutive year including last year's champion Swift Whirlwind.
We will have plenty of runners on Friday at Romford and possibly a trip to Henlow on Sunday where the Maiden Gold Cup starts over 550m .
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN - CALCO FLYER
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Well we have two in the final of the Ladbrokes Golden Jacket final at Crayford on Tuesday but somehow we have managed not to include them in our bets but that's the way it goes sometimes. Looking for a bet this week I have great difficulty in picking between our four runners in the Peter Bussey Memorial Trophy when the event starts this week. For a bit of value let's side with Ribble Aon who ran well behind kennel mate Airforce Duchess on Saturday morning
RIBBLE AON - 2 pts ew ante post - Peter Bussey Memorial Trophy - Crayford - starts Thursday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
RUBYS RASCAL - 5 pts win ante post 8/1 - Ladbrokes Golden Jacket - Crayford - lost