Monday 14th December 2009
JOIN GOBATA NOW
With less than two weeks to go to Christmas we are starting to wind down a little bit to give the dogs and staff a well earned break during the festive period. After meetings on 23rd December we will only be racing on the 28th at Henlow (Gold Cup Final) until January 2nd where we start next yea'rs campaign, fresh and ready for what is going to be an incredible task of trying to better 2009!
This week coming we do however have two massive engagements that can really help us finish the year in style. On Tuesday at Wimbledon the feature event is a cracking Oaks Final which unfortunately we didn' have any entries in (something I will be trying hard to rectify next year) but in the supporting races we have four runners that include 2009 St Leger Champion Kinda Easy who returns to the scene of his big race triumph, also promising puppy Aero Bolt takes on a top class field of pups and Eye Onthe Flash is in a hot 460m that has loads of early paced types in opposition but probably the highlight of the night, for us especially, is the greyhound of the moment Eye Onthe Storm who showcases his massive talent on Sky when he runs in a tough 480m race from trap 1. Great news as well 'Frankie' will pick up the GWA Dog Of The Month award for November which will be presented to him on the night and who knows an impressive win may well nudge the scribes shortly before they think about their nominations for Greyhound Of The Year awards.
On Thursday the Henlow Winter Derby Final has a classy look about it but in Jogadusc Ace, who runs from his favourite trap 3, we must have an excellent chance of a season ending victory, one that Ace would thoroughly deserve for his consistency all year long. After going to Henlow the past fortnight you have to commend them on the massive improvements they have made under the Morton family's new era.
Amazingly, after cleaning up in all three previous Ladbrokes Festivals at Monmore that take place in the year, it just didn't happen last week in the Winter bonanza. Droopys Zach was withdrawn lame from the main 630m event and both Corrig Vieri and Kinda Easy were eliminated from the first round after missed breaks. Just to cap off our week Eye Eye Pickle, who won his heat of the dogs 480m event very well on Monday, was bundled to the ground at the first bend in the final but thankfully looks none the worse for his tumble.
News on Saturday of the death of legendary trainer Geoff De Mulder has sent sadness throughout the Greyhound world. Much respected and with an endless list of top class winners through out the 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's Geoff will be best remembered for his two Derby winners Jimsun and Sarahs Bunny at White City. I had the pleasure of speaking to him a few times and fondly recall him remarking on the excellent condition of our dogs at a meeting one night when Linda was the trainer. Praise from someone of his standing was praise indeed and I also remember the days of the late 80's when a particular dog of Geoff's caught my eye at Perry Bar on a cold November evening, a striking brindle with white socks called Fearless Mustang. I continued to follow the dog backing him at odds of 66/1 right down to 10/1 for the Derby the following year. Having reached the final in brilliant style with Geoff saying he was the fastest dog he had ever trained I thought my judgement was spot on when he went off even money favourite for the premier classic but sadly the weight of my money and expectations was too much and obviously he didn't win but it didn't stop my high regard for a trainer who came close to perfection in most people's eyes.
Great news this week, our superb 2009 Greyhound Derby winner Kinda Ready has returned to our kennels after a short break back in Ireland where his breeders Ian and Brenda Seymour were kindly looking after him and what brilliant condition he was in. We will be looking at bringing him back to full training in the New Year with the defence of his crown firmly in mind,. The schedule in January is a bit sparse with the delays in the Sky schedule and it is annoying for most open race trainers that both the Prestige at Hall Green and the Birmingham Cup at Perry Bar are not taking place as they were perfect to get the season off to a flyer.
This Wednesday the GOBATA inaugural meeting takes place at the Hilton East Midlands Airport Hotel, (junc 24 off the M1) 7.30 start. This is a public meeting and it is hoped that there is a huge turn out,. A ready GOBATA has nearly 1,000 members registered and I strongly urge any readers, owners and supporters of Greyhound racing to join this association which has strong backing from all the leading trainers and owners in the industry. Its sole aim is to try and unite the sport and stop its decline and eventually bring a think tank of the top people within our industry to promote and try to get Greyhound racing back as one of the most popular leisure activities attended.
Right! for those readers who think they have a deep knowledge of Imperial Kennels Pete Vernon has kindly devised a Christmas Quiz for a bit of fun. Believe me even I couldn't answer a lot of the questions so have a guess and you never know you could win! I will give a bottle of Champagne to the person who answers the most questions right.
As said, Monday at Monmore never quite went to plan with both Corrg Vieri and Kinda Easy eliminated from the heats of the Ladbrokes Winter Festival Stayers. In the supporting event, the Dogs 480m, Directors Ruler who won the event last year again ran well when 3rd but was well beaten by Target Classic in a track record 27.71. Eye Eye Pickle had no problems winning his heat comfortably in 28.11.
On Tuesday trials at Wimbledon went well with Eye Onthe Storm (27.54) impressing and both Eye Onthe Flash (27.54) and Aero Bolt (28.01) moving well while at Hall Green on the same night Hawk Sky was a well beaten 2nd but Rockburst Canyon gained a deserved win after some consistent efforts at the track holding on by a head in 28.80 (-20). Dalcash Scolari proved the previous week's flying run was no fluke when he blew his rivals away in a good 480m scoring by over 5 lengths in a fast 28.36 (-20).
On Wednesday at Harlow in-form Sligo Too was back on the mark again winning a sprint open 15.22 (-10) and the only other open runners were in the 415m Standard. Risky Invader and the rest of the rivals had no answers to the returning Bell Tornado who smashed out the traps (4.75 sec) and won well by over 5 lengths in 26.06 (-10).
At Henlow on Thursday a busy night started with Kinda Handy going down a short head in the sprint in 16.67. Gan On Parker followed up the previous week's good effort with a nice win in the puppy 460m by 2 lengths in 28.00, Aldataro Lass (4th), Parkmore Elite (4th) and Directors Fire (2nd) all showed pace and in the feature race of the night the Semi's of the Winter Derby Jogadusc Ace gave another top display of front running when scoring by 5 lengths in the fastest of the three semis 27.60. In the last semi Eye Onthe Brave led but was caught close home by Craggy Ted and Droopys Bogart losing out by a short head and a head for a place in the final. In the heats of the veterans competition Kindred Sparky just lost out going down by a short head in 27.94 but will fancy his chances of reversing the places in Thursday's final.
On Friday at Monmore Eye Eye Pickle was ko'd in the Dogs 480m final from a poor trap 4 draw.
On Wednesday Miss Sarah was 2nd before a fine debut from Carden Boss who won well in 27.77 (-20). On Saturday Sweep Clean got back on the score sheet winning by a neck in 26.70 (-10) with Bim Bam Boozle a further 1/2 length back in 3rd. Agincourt Fancy also regained winning ways in 26.49 and Legit Jack just got up on the line to win in 26.45 (+10).
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACE - JOGADUSC ACE
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Tonight the Henlow Gold Cup kicks off with six heats and Eye Onthe Tempo and Goldies Destiny lead our team. At Wimbledon on Tuesday the Sky card looks top class and interest in the races supporting the Oaks final will be high for the kennel. Opens at Harlow Wednesday and on Thursday the Henlow Winter Derby is the feature of what should be a good card and Jogadusc Ace looks to have a very good chance from trap 3. Kindred Sparky will be having his last race in the Seniors Final and what a great way to finish his fine year and career with a win. Opens at Coventry on Friday complete the week and watch out for pup Directors Spur in the future who should be making his debut.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
We seem to be putting the mockers on anything we tip these last couple of weeks with Corrig Vieri very unlucky at Monmore last Monday. For a bit of value this week have a small interest on Aero Bolt in the puppy race at Wimbledon tomorrow, he looks to be an above average pup but it is a tough race.
AERO BOLT - 1pt e.w - Wimbledon - Tuesday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
CORRIG VIERI - 4 pts win ante-post 6/1 - Ladbrokes Winter Festival - Monmore - Lost