29th June 2015
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A brilliant William Hill Greyhound Derby drew to a conclusion on Saturday night with a superb finals card. Congratulations to Danny Riordan and Rio Quatro on a stunning triumph in the Derby final. I've known Danny for many years now and he is one of the most politest and nicest people in our sport. He has always trained a good dog or two and it came as no surprise to me to see Rio Quatro spot on for the final, he without question knows how to train a dog and Saturday proves it. Danny has had health issues over the last couple of years and this will certainly be the best tonic for his future, well done!
I was looking back on Rio Quatro's career and he has plenty of Derby winning form amongst his CV but I remember one thing that on his debut in a 400m Maiden at Romford a while back we beat him with an A2/3 dog from Yarmouth called Skips Special. Unfortunately their paths certainly went different ways as I think Skips Special was sold cheaply by his owner to the independent circuit. Anyway what a terrific final it was on Saturday and who would have thought Farloe Blitz would have got beat after leading up? well he did and that was down to a fabulous burst of back straight pace from Rio Quatro who blew the favourite away. Both Tynwald Bish and Eden The Kid ran very well in behind in a memorable final.
Overall our Derby campaign and final night has been pretty successful and our five runners on the supporting card had mixed fortunes. Swift Whirlwind was a bit unlucky in the puppy race when badly hampered at the first bend after a good start, he will be winning plenty in the future for sure. Evanta Evita tried her hardest to win the Ladies 480m for the second year but had to give second best to Forest Twilight. Ballymac Sinbad finished well beaten in a 480m Standard and something Isn't quite right with him as he is better than that.
However two stunning performances from Domino Storm and Calco Flyer made the night special for our kennel. The Derby Plate is always a difficult race to win but our little 25 kilo star Domino Storm proved the week before fastest heat win was spot on. Led up by Charlie Lister's fast Old Golden Joe she herself showed great pace up but the way she ran the first two bends was a joy to behold and off the second bend she was in front and there was no stopping her from there, she simply powered away to win by over 4 lengths in a magical 28.23 (1 spot faster than the Derby final). I thought for a few days now that Calco Flyer had a great chance of keeping our fine record going in the British Bred race and he sent favourite backers home with a smile. A rare smash break saw Calco Flyer lead at the first bend and from there it was race over, storming home he crossed the line in a fine 28.39 to send his army of supporters away happy.
With the Derby over for another year the season continues on and we get into the big race action straight away as the William Hill Festival starts next Saturday with the heats of the Grand Prix and Classic. We will send a small team for both events and on Friday we ventured up taking Aayamzamodel who won a 640m trial stake in good fashion and last year's finalist should be worth following now back on the scoresheet. Jimmy Nailed On was only 4th in his trial stake but ran well and should benefit from the look round. In a trial before racing Evanta Fantasy beat kennel mate Clondoty Alex by 1 1/2 lengths in a fair 27.37 and both should improve on Saturday. We will also have regular runners at Hove and Romford as we build up to the forthcoming Sussex Cup and Champion Stakes at both tracks. The TV Trophy over eight bends at Towcester is just around the corner as well and we are hopeful that some opens will fill over coming weeks to build up to the event.
I'm away on a family holiday on Tuesday but our newsletter will be up as normal next week and look out over the next couple of weeks for a number of pups that will be on our 'For Sale page'. Ian Greaves has hand picked several pups to come to our kennel and look no further if you want the next Hometown Honey, Blonde Reagan, Blonde Razor, Evanta Fantasy, Domino Storm, Swift Whirlwind etc as I'm sure one or two of that quality will be amongst them.
That leaves me to remind everyone that our popular FREE TO ENTER 5 To Follow competition closes to entries on Wednesday so don't miss out as we will have some fabulous prizes to give away for the leading teams at the end of the year including a night at the GBGB Awards next January as a guest at my table (including overnight stay) and a table for four in the lovely restaurant at Towcester on a Saturday of your choice amongst others. If any one has already picked Aero Twizzle please contact us as he has now been retired and you have time to swap him.
Millroad Rodger made a fine debut on Thursday when landing a Maiden sprint in 16.44 and Ballymac Shirley nearly made it a memorable double when just caught on the line in a 515m Maiden. Ferryforth Fran did well to finish second in the heats of the Coral Stayers after a slow break and will improve in the final, Aero Babooska took a crashing fall in the final race but thankfully is fine.
On Friday at Romford from our four runners Saffrons Anna took a heat of the 500 Bitches in fine style for the Markwallisgreyhounds Racing Club in a good 24.23. Adageo Bob suffered a rare defeat over 575m as Pharisee Flyer got first run on him and though he still ran well a lack of race fitness in my opinion was his downfall. As said at Sunderland Aayamzamodel scored well over 640m, and on Saturday at Wimbledon Domino Storm and Calco Flyer were the stars of the night for our kennel.
On Saturday night there was few hard luck stories from our runners with Ribble Atom (3rd) particularly unlucky in a top grade 655m, Ilewin Frimley made it a magnificent 4 wins from 5 races when taking an A2 in good fashion.
On Sunday a similar story from our 9 runners with Benkaat Dolly our only winner over 655m in a good S2 in 39.83
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Back to Hove on Thursday with Ferrythorth Fran in the feature race over 695m, Saffrons Anna also runs in a minor stakes final at Romford on Friday while we will be back to Sunderland on Saturday for the heats of the William Hill Classic and Grand Prix.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Nearly a lovely double for us Saturday at Wimbledon with Evanta Evita and Calco Flyer but hopefully still a profit overall.
The William Hill Festival kicks off on Saturday and our small team of four entries are quality and I see no reason why they all can't do well and are worth an interest at what should be reasonable prices. Evanta Fantasy could take her Derby form to the North East and would be my strongest fancy.
EVANTA FANTASY - 2 pts e.w ante post - William Hill Classic - Sunderland - starts Saturday
CLONDOTY ALEX - 1 pt e.w ante post - William Hill Classic - Sunderland - starts Saturday
AAYAMZAMODEL - 2 pts e.w ante post - William Hill Grand Prix - Sunderland - starts Saturday
JIMMY NAILED ON - 1 pt e.w ante post - William Hill Grand Prix - Sunderland - starts Saturday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
EVANTA EVITA - 5 pts win - Wimbledon - Saturday - lost
CALCO FLYER - 5 pts win - Wimbledon - Saturday - WON 13/8