26th May 2015
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We have had the massive build up and all the hype but this week the William Hill Greyhound Derby finally gets underway at Wimbledon. With a record entry of around 250 going to traps over four nights it promises to be well worth the wait, yes there will be some owners and trainers who will be gutted if their pride and joys finish out the first two in the opening round, especially if they are 3rd, but the decision is made and they have to get to 96 runners by the second round. We have an incredible 20 entries as previewed in last week's Newsletter.
Everything seems to have revolved around the Derby this last week and our batch of trials on Wednesday at Wimbledon went reasonably well for our 16 hopefuls with Blonde Nipper impressing most with a 28.43 trial, he is very strong and if he can improve on his early pace he could be a live contender. Last year's semi finalist Aero Nemesis didn't go so well as he checked at the start, a muscle strain is the main problem and we have a race against time to get him ready for his race on Thursday. On Wednesday night three of our other Derby entries raced at Hove on the supporting card for the Coral Regency. Van Frankie got involved in early bother and was down the field over 515m while Evanta Evita looked set to win again over 475m after battling to the lead at the halfway stage but succumbed to a fast finish by Shotgun Harley. Domino Storm was most impressive winning the Ladies 515m in a superb 29.77.
Here below are my thoughts on the heats involving our runners:
Heat 5 - Domino Storm (200/1)
You can tell how tough this heat is as our in form little pocket rocket is 10/1 to win. She faces a stern test with the Irish trio of Farloe Blitz (ante post favourite in some books), Millbank Stevie and Jaytee Dutch in opposition as well as the useful Roxholme Ted and nothing but her best break will suffice. A superb 29.77 win at Hove last week will certainly worry them but she has it all to do to make the next round.
Heat 7 - Vanfrankie (500/1)
A competitive 5 dog heat with Paul Hennessy's Jaytee Jet the one to beat. Frankie has been running well at Hove but will have to be at his best to get in the first two here. If he traps well he has good middle pace and will be strong over the 480m.
Heat 13 - Vanmaestro (750/1)
One of our better chances of qualifying as Maestro has drawn a weakish 5 dog heat. Trap 1 Rafas Wee Jet for Charlie Lister has been a shade disappointing to date but is capable of better and well regarded while Liam Dowling's Baile Mhic looks only average but still dangerous in this. Maestro is a powerful 37.5 kilo dog who could surprise in this event, he reminds me of Adageo who was only competing in A5 at Harlow a month before the Derby started back in 2010 and made the final at huge odds!
Heat 15 - Blackstone Marco (500/) / Blue Moment (125/1)
A great chance for both of our established stars to qualify for the next round in another 5 dog heat. Blue Moment looks sure to lead and this represents a good chance for him to make a statement that he might be a contender if he stays the trip ok and also if his mind is focussed.
Blackstone Marco comes into the event fresh and if he doesn't get tangled up with traps 1 and 2 will run Blue Moment very close, both are class acts on their day.
Heat 17 - Adageo Bob (200/1)
If the Derby was over 575m at Romford Adageo Bob would likely be ante post favourite but it's not and our superstar takes his chance in the four bend classic. He has drawn a competitive heat with the Irish duo of Tynwald Rodney and Farloe Rumble looking the chief threats. Bob has been kept really fresh for this having only had a sprint trial this month and has a plot draw in trap 6 and can pass this test with flying colours.
Heat 18 - Aero Nemesis (150/1)
Comes into the event with a cloud hanging over him after checking in a trial last week but a muscle strain is being worked on and he should be in the line up to take his chance. Though only a 5 dog heat this is tough. Graham Holland's pair of Riverside Pat and Hoffs Nephew are very decent and live contenders for outright honours, added to that both Stay Loose and Jolly Tricks have some top class efforts to their name. Last year's semi finalist looks vulnerable to say the least and will need to rediscover last years semi finalist form to qualify.
Heat 22 - Roswell De Niro (500/1)
Southfield Jock will be all the rage to land this last heat on Thursday and Jaytee China is a decent bitch on her day in trap 2 so Roswell De Niro will have to trap out in his best style if he is to qualify. He does posses great early pace and trap 4 looks a nice draw, maybe a spot of value to do so. Towcester form seems decent and he shouldn't be underestimated.
HEAT 24 - Vanbasten (500/1)
Vanbasten comes into the event fresh after being pulled out the Arc with a small injury. Should come on a bundle for his moderate trial last week and will need to as he faces the decent Irish pair of Blue Cafu and Salonika and the useful Sparta Flame.
Heat 25 - Evanta Fantasy (200/1)
Irish star Deanridge Pennys will be well fancied to land this 5 dog heat but our Romford specialist Evanta Fantasy has a good chance of qualifying. Her 28.74 trial last week can be improved on and not many will lead her up in the whole event, a 4.79 split is superb and she is getting stronger as she gets older. A bit of value in the bitch that goes furthest market.
Heat 31 - Evanta Evita (200/1) / Swift Whirlwind (200/1)
A huge race for both of these for the kennel, 1st and 2nd in the betting for their heat and big Derby long term prospects all four of their rivals are dangers but wouldn't beat them if they are on their best form. Evita is a class act and loves Wimbledon but will be vulnerable if Whirlwind pings and leads and then she will be looking over her shoulders if he does for that vital second place. If she leads the same applies for him but I'm confident both can come through.
Heat 32 - Ballymac Sinbad (100/1)
Some fancy prices have been hoovered up about one of our brightest young prospects and Sinbad has made a big impression in his first four races over here with a sparkling win in a maiden puppy competition at Towcester. This 5 dog race is not easy with the highly regarded Romany Rouge in attendance as well as Ballymac Matt from Ireland. He will have to step up on his trial from last week which I'm sure he will but this is a massive ask, interesting
Heat 38 - Aero Babooshka (200/1)
An excellent chance for our prolific open racer to open her account in one of the lesser 5 dog heats. Babooska trialled well last week and the track and long run up will suit. Veteran Leamaneigh Turbo and the Irish raider Tynwald Bish are her chief threats but she is banker material to come through.
Heat 42 - Blonde Razor (300/1)
Razor faces last year's runner up Droopys Ward in an interesting heat. He likes Wimbledon and is also fresh for the event like last year where he ran superb in the first two rounds. He certainly will make life hard for Droopys Ward from trap 2 as he will turn left on the run up and he will need to clear him if he is to qualify.
Heat 43 - Swift Turbo (750/1)
Probably the least exposed of all our runners not just here but of any Derby entry we've had. A name to watch out for in the future and owned by the Virtual Syndicate which includes Jonjo O'Neil this is a huge ask for our lightly raced pup, having said that this is not the toughest of heats and he could surprise. Trap 1 Badmoonrising looks the chief threat.
Heat 44 - Blonde Nipper (100/1)
In my mind our best chance of all of our runners for outright honours. He faces a stern test here with plenty of early pace around him, the one department I think he is slightly short on. King Alley particularly has the best early but if Nipper turns behind him he will be well fancied to assert from halfway and get his campaign off to the best start.
Heat 46 - Reel Shirty (500/1)
Every year we seem to find an outsider who can go a few rounds and as said Adageo, Secret Crystal spring to mind who have started at 500/1 + and have reached the final. Of all of our outsiders I think Reel Shirty fits that bill. Strictly on the form he has it all to do with only a maiden sprint open at Hove to his name but he is better than that and drawn in a useful but not spectacular heat here is a chance to shine. A nice trial last week can be improved on.
Heat 47 - Do It For Twiggy (500/1)
Not too much has gone right for Twiggy this year with a couple of niggling injuries but he isn't here to make the numbers up and this one time top Yarmouth dog can use his draw to at least give himself a chance of upsetting some fancied rivals that include ante post favourite Droopys Nidge. He himself will do well to clear the early paced Coolmore Joe and Twiggy can take advantage of any trouble up front. If it's a clean race he will struggle to give these a start and a beating.
Heat 48 - Calco Flyer (150/1)
Two weeks ago Calco Flyer would have been my nap to be our best Derby hope. Probably the most improved dog in our kennel this year he has won some decent opens and was desperately unlucky in the Arc final and is a great competition dog. He impressed when beating Blonde Nipper in a recent trial but a subsequent odds on defeat in the Trueframe Stud Book Trophy has dented his hopes. Worse still this has to be one of the toughest heats of the first round and all six connections will be gutted they have drawn this heat. Save The Don was fancied to land the Scottish Derby and Fiery Splendour is the current track record holder while Droopys Cairns and Roxholme Kid have been fancied ante post. If the Flyer is to progress nothing but his best form will suffice.
So there we have it, let the show begin and good luck to all connections and let's hope every greyhound comes off safe and sound!
As said at Hove on Wednesday Domino Storm was the star of the show with a superb 29.77 win in a 515m Ladies race.
Our only other open race action was at Towcester on Saturday with Ilewin Allot 3rd in a sprint while in a Novice Stayers race we had a 1-2 with Ribble Atom scoring a debut win over the fancied Ferryforth Fran in a fine 39.52
Plenty of winners over the weekend with the improving Nimrod Son taking an A4 in 28.89, Dehavillands Boy got back to winning ways in an A5 finishing like a train to score in 28.86, youngster Sidarian Fancy got off the mark winning an A7 in 29.06 and Energize Master completed a good night when winning a D3 in 15.94.
On Saturday an overdue win for Airforce Karla in a D2 in 15.60 started the night off well. Undoubtedly the best graded race of the night was the S1 and Garryglass Pixie showed us why she is an exciting prospect with a superb 39.76 victory against some useful opposition. Ribble Rush, fresh from last week's puppy final, obliged in an A4 in 28.67 and Saffrons Anna took advantage of a welcome downgrade to win an A3 in 28.49 for an excellent night for the kennel.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Of course the main focus of the week is the William Hill Greyhound Derby first round spread over four nights from Wednesday until Saturday and our 20 entries certainly have mixed draws. Our other open race action will be at Romford on Friday and Towcester on Saturday.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
We have been fortunate to have tipped up both our previous Derby winners with Kinda Ready (100/1) and Blonde Snapper (80/1) giving our many followers a huge pay day. I can't tell you how good it was to receive so many emails texts and congratulations from people who had won huge amounts mostly with little stakes. We came oh so close last year with Aero Nemesis recommended at a huge 125/1, so here we go for this year.
Blonde Nipper has a touch of class about him and is ready to step into the big time, a quietish preparation since arriving from Ireland with an excellent Irish card he can come to the fore in this event. Only a slight concern on his early pace for me stops me being really bullish about him but if we can improve that department he is a serious player in this classic. At 100/1 he could be our third Derby winner at superb odds.
Swift Whirlwind is still only a July 13 and this Derby may come too soon but he is well raced and possesses phenomenal early pace and traps very well consistently. At 200/1 generally (250/1 Paddy Power) he is very good value to go a long way
Reel Shirty isn't a household name for sure and at a huge 500/1 is an outsider who has that one armoury that is much needed with an outsider, early pace, still lightly raced he could be a touch of value to surprise many people.
Evanta Evita is pure class and on her day can beat her own sex and the opposite sex. Coming right after a winter break she didn't disgrace when runner up in the Arc final and loves Wimbledon. At 200/1 she is value to go a long way and is my nap for the bitch to go the furthest in the event when these prices come out.
Blue Moment and Aero Babooshka look the best bets to win their first round heats and at 7/4 each could get us our stake money back for the ante post bets.
BLONDE NIPPER - 2.5 pts e.w ante post 100/1 - William Hill Greyhound Derby - Wimbledon - starts Wednesday
SWIFT WHIRLWIND - 2 pts e.w ante post 200/1 - William Hill Greyhound Derby - Wimbledon - starts Wednesday
REEL SHIRTY - 1 pt e.w ante post 500/1 - William Hill Greyhound Derby - Wimbledon - starts Wednesday
EVANTA EVITA - 1 pt e.w ante post 200/1 - William Hill Greyhound Derby - Wimbledon- starts Wednesday
EVANTA EVITA - 5 pts win - Bitch to go furthest - William Hill Greyhound Derby- Wimbledon - starts Wednesday
BLUE MOMENT - 5 pts win 7/4 - to win heat 15 - William Hill Greyhound Derby - Wimbledon- THURSDAY
AERO BABOOSHKA - 5 pts win 2/1 - to win heat 38 - William Hill Greyhound Derby - Wimbledon - Saturday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
EVANTA EVITA - 5 pts win - Hove - Wednesday- lost
DOMINO STORM - 5 pts win - Hove - Wednesday - WON 9/4