Monday 11th August 2008
There are now only three meetings and six days left before what could be a devastating blow for the greyhound industry when our beloved Walthamstow is set to close despite the magnificent efforts of Ricky Holloway and the team S.O.S. I've not seen the like before in greyhound racing with the unbelievable scenes at the track on both Thursday and Saturday when Ricky and all the campaigners including Trainers, kennel hands, owners and employees of the stadium were allowed to peacefully protest around the track and were greeted with rapturous applause and cheering from the packed crowds and clearly you can see the genuine disgust in all that this has even been allowed to happen. Let's hope that talks this week between Ricky's consortium and L & Q who have rought the Stadium from the Chandlers can agree to some deal that can keep the Stadium open, even if it has to shut for a short period while all the necessary legal side is sorted. The key stumbling block seems to be all the fixtures and fittings which have already been sold to various tracks and peopl. Without these it will not only be impossible to continue to race but will cost a fortune to replace and one hopes these people will sell them back to the consortium if they are successful in securing the purchase or lease from L & Q. While all this is happening surprisingly our BGRB sits back and does nothing! no change there! If Walthamstow closes the detrimental effect it will have on the sport will be massive on every level. Ricky's high level of media interest will carry on this week culminating in a peaceful march at 12 midday next Saturday 16th August from the Stow to Walthamstow Town Hall and I again urge all supporters of the campaign to be there! More details can be found on www.saveourstow.co.uk and who knows maybe even the Racing Post and Sky might get off the fence and support the campaign!
On the track no luck in our two finals this week. No complaints at Wimbledon in the Puppy Derby as Eye Onthe Brave ran well to be third but had no answers to Jim Daly's flying pup Jesters Nap but at Perry Barr Tipp The Breeze only just failed to beat her bad draw in trap 4 in the Keith Johnson Summer Stayers final before finishing 5th to Coolavanny Pius who was completing a great week for Elaine Parker with Droopys Sheehy's victory in Belle Vue's Nortern Flat Final. Butterbridge Ali's brilliant return to the podium on Thursday at Walthamstow over 640m was a real tonic for the kennel along with Eye Onthe Flame's return to form over hurdles with a double at both Wimbledon on Tuesday on Sky and at Walthamstow on Saturday.
On Tuesday at Wimbledon as said above, Eye Onthe Brave was 3rd in the Stan James Puppy Derby Final 3 1/2 lengths behind Jesters Nap in 27.55 (+10) and Eye Onthe Flame gave owner John Keefe some small consolation when taking the hurdle race by a length in 28.55 (+15). Treacle Rose (3rd) and Eye Onthe Veto (5th), our other runners on the Sky card, ran respectably as well. On Wednesday at Harlow in the heats of the Monkey Stayers Mooloolaba was 3rd behind fastest heat winner Newtown Susie in 37.58 (+20). Missed A Train held on from Ronnies Flier by a head in 37.97 and Coolanga Flyer was 2nd beaten 2 1/4 lengths by Toosey Tops in 37.84 with Eye Onthe Spirit being distracted when challenging for second place. Genesis Gemstone was never really in the race in the Monkey Standard final when last and in the Monkey Maiden final Roswell Gemini trapped well but went lame approaching the first bend and was well beaten.
On Thursday at Walthamstow Lode Star won Div 2 of the 640m in a calc 39.95 and in the top Division Butterbridge Ali trapped well en route to a fine 4 1/2 length win in 39.53 (+15). A fine race between Eye Onthe Pulse and Chris Duggan's Shrewd Diamond in a good 475m Maiden with both dogs neck and neck from the first bend and Eye Onthe Pulse's late lunge grabbed the race in an excellent 28.88. At Perry Barr Pinewood Evo ran well when 3rd in the bitches 480m beaten 4 1/4 lengths in 28.71 (-20) while Tipp The Breeze with a better draw could have won the Keith Johnson Summer Stayers final had she not had her back legs taken just when she was going round the first bend in a good position.
On Friday no joy at Romford with our four runners with Directors Chair 2nd and although odds on to win was unlucky when chopped off at the first bend and finding an inspired Bluetoon Sal who held him by 1 1/2 lengths in a fast 35.50 (+20). On Saturday at Walthamstow despite awful weather there was a packed house and in the bitches race Treacle Rose missed her break and finished 3rd behind Droopys Lotto in 29.60 (-50). Nice to see Seanis Strike back winning when he run well to take Div 2 of the standard in 29.24 (-20). In the veteran's 475m both the fast finishing Discreet Cat and Lockdale Lady were 2nd and 3rd respectively behind the high class Cobra Striking beaten a length in 29.27 (-20). Eye Onthe Flame took the 475m Hurdle beating his brother Bubbly Magic a length in 29.94 (-30). When Aero Blackjack trapped fast he looked to have the race in the bag but Moolooba had different ideas and taking the running up off the second bend she herself was caught by Bubbly Rambo on the run in and was beaten 1/2 length in 40.37 (-50) with the disappointing Aero Blackjack in 3rd. In the top Division of the 475m Standard Centaur Decree had a nightmare draw in trap 4 and was lucky not to find serious trouble when in the pack at the first bend but although taken out of the race he had another run under his belt with Frosty Lee taking the race in 29.45 (-40) with Directors Ruler back in 3rd.
WALTHAMSTOW AND HARLOW REVIEW
On Tuesday at the Stow Thankyou Les Kid came from way off the pace to beat kennelmate Hollywell Brett by a length in 29.71. Bingo Panda won again using her fine early by 1 3/4 in 29.42. Genesis Sister was beaten on the nod by a head in 29.40. At Harlow on Wednesday in the inter-tracks Rank N File justified favouritism whe winning by 2 lengths in a good 26.18 (+20). Chilli Blue made it two from two at the track leading all the way to win by 1 3/4 lengths in 26.40 (+10) and Toasting Jack held on well by a head to win in 26.49 (+10). Blackey Said So doubled up at the track when winning by over 3 lengths in a fine 26.27.
In the graded races on Thursday Taboby Legend, despite running very green, ran out a comfortable winner by 6 1/2 lengths in 29.43 (+10). Genesis Alix ran well but was just beaten 3/4 of a length in 29.37 and to complete a good night Mountjoy Diamond held on by 3/4 length from kennelmate Bee My Honey in 40.33. On Saturday King Jackson got the better of a tight finish to win by a head in 30.06 (-50). Cassius Clay won the H1 in good style by 4 1/4 lengths in 30.36 (-50) and Toasting Jack made it two wins in a week following his Harlow victory by landing the A3 by 1 1/2 lengths in 29.56 (-20). Missed A Train couldn't do the same when 2nd in the S1 beaten 4 lengths in 40.23 (-40). Chilli Cobra was runner up in the A2 and looks like a win is just around the corner.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACING- BUTTERBRIDGE ALI
GRADED- BLACKEY SAID SO
WHATS ON THIS WEEK
Tonight sees the start of the Nottingham Puppy Classic and our five pups all face stiff tasks in a very warm competition. Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday could be what might be the historic last three meetings at Walthamstow (don't forget the march on Saturday). On Wednesday at Harlow Missed A Train and Coolanga Flyer are in the Monkey Stayers final and we should have runners at Romford on Friday.