Monday 19th January 2009
A frantic week on the track just gone with the main news being that we have qualified no fewer than three runners into the first Category 1 final of the year, the William Hill Birmingham Cup at Perry Barr. Goldcrest King, Mountjoy Gold and Directors Ruler all line up in Thursday's live on Sky feature race but with the Charlie Lister duo of Fear Zaffonic and Afflek Elite plus the strong and well drawn Shaneboy Luke trained by Liz Mcnair in opposition it will be an extremely hard job for the kennel to lift the trophy.
Our first two finalists in competitions last week both ended with us filling the runner up positions but to be fair neither had any chance with the winners. Lockdale Storm in the Monkey Maiden Stayers final at Harlow on Wednesday led and ran well but had no answers to the powerful Springwood Pilot and on Friday at Romford in the £3,000 to the winner Coronation Cup a slick break by the top class Droopys Carvalho gave his rivals no chance with our Droopys Zach moving into second at the third bend trying hard to reduce the leader's advantage, which he did to his credit, but was still some 8 lengths down as John Mullins' charge crossed the line in a magnificent 35.39 (-30) to take the first prize.
Earlier in the week the kennel had a tremendous night on the first Sky meeting of the year at Hall Green with three winners on the supporting card for the Prestige Final which was won very well by Seamus Cahill's Hawks Dilemma. Kinda Ready, an April pup, was pitched into an all age race as the puppy race had failed to fill and, when he missed the up and was at the rear of the field going into the first bend, the signs did not look good but showing great track craft and an amazing burst of pace he caught and passed the long time leader Birchfield Dream (useful open race dog) to record a sensational win. Ready and his brother Easy look two stars of the future for sure. Also on the card there were good wins for Mountjoy Ruby and old servant Butterbridge Ali and the night could have been even better as both Tipp The Breeze (ran very well) and Genesis Alix were touched off in photographs.
Next Sunday all roads lead to the Hilton Metropole in Edgware Road as the BGRB/GBGB Greyhound awards night takes place. If you have never been it is a splendid occasion that is done very well with over 500 guests present. It will be a nerve racking but proud moment for myself as I will be presented with the Trainer Of The Year award which is an honour not only for myself but for my wife and business partner Sarah, all my staff and my loyal owners, over 40 of which we will have in attendance.
My new feature for the website - the recommended bets for the week - has got off to a brilliant start and I am in real danger of being called a judge! Mountjoy Ruby landed last week's nap and with Goldcrest King looking good for our ante-post bet (20/1 advised e.w and now down to around 5/1) in the Birmingham Cup the pressure is on to keep the profits in tact.
Plenty of our open racers in trial action Mon/Tues/Weds with Kinda Easy (30.70 calc) at Nottingham, Centaur Decree (13.76 calc) and Goldcrest Lord (13.54 calc) at Romford and Roswell Startrek (17.33) at Coventry impressing. As said above wins on the Sky meeting at Hall Green on Tuesday for Kinda Ready 28.53 calc, Mountjoy Ruby 28.53 calc over 480m and Butterbridge Ali in the 645m staying on well to win 39.72 calc. Tipp The Breeze ran her best race for a while when just getting caught on the line by Capel Wilson in the 670m beaten 1/2 length in 41.80 (-45) and in the dramatic Marathon over 892m a ding dong finish involving Genesis Alix and the reluctant Swift Jade resulted in a short head victory for the latter in 57.10 (-80).
After sitting at Coventry until 10.20 waiting for the final open on Wednesday it was disappointing to see Lockdale Duke lead but get caught on the run in finishing 3rd beaten less than a length in 29.79. At Harlow on the same night the first ever hurdle race at the track resulted in a 2nd for Cassius Clay who was beaten 3 lengths in 26.7. In the heats of the Monkey Maiden Standard our only runner Toasting Jack showed good early to lead but was caught on the run in by the strong Mistley River beaten 1 3/4 lengths in 26.15. Seanis Strike was 2nd in a warm 415m Standard beaten 3 1/2 lengths in 25.97. Lockdale Storm was 2nd in the Monkey Maiden Stayers final beaten 5 lengths in 37.87 and Bell Tornado had to pull out all the stops to win the 592m Stayers by a short head in 38.10 racking up an eight timer over course and distance.
In the important semi-finals of the Birmingham Cup on Friday at Perry Barr Goldcrest King led but found Afflek Elite right on his tail who proved stronger on the run in to win by 1/2 length in 28.59 (-40). In the third semi our three runners went round the first bend in front with Mountjoy Gold leading the way from Directors Ruler with Eye Onthe Brave a close up 3rd. Directors Ruler challenged at the third bend but was forced to check and in a bunched finish Mountjoy Gold held on to beat Directors Ruler by neck in 28.81 (-40) with Eye Onthe Brave (unlucky in running) a close up 4th giving the kennel three runners in the final. At Romford on the same night both Millwards Summit (4th) and Goldcrest Lord (3rd) should come on for the runs. Congo Invader was an unlucky 3rd in the 400m Standard beaten 1 3/4 in 24.53 (-10). As said Droopys Zach was runner up in the Coronation Cup final but the kennel came away with a winner in the 575m Stayers when the evergreen Genesis Dream took the last race by 9 lengths in 35.9920(-20).
On Saturday our Springbok hopefuls Rockburst Mason and Bomber Bailey both had their first races over hurdles at Wimbledon in trial stakes with Rockburst Mason going down by a short head in 28.87 (-10) at odds on and in a warm top division Bomber Bailey ran well to finish 3rd eaten just over 2 lengths in 28.52 (-10) both should improve for the runs. On Sunday at Coventry Reagrove Class was our only winner leading all the way (5.35 sec) to win by 2 1/4 lengths in 29.61. Pinewood Evo couldn't dominate but was a close 3rd beaten 1/2 length in 30.01 and again Elusive Jazz ran a blinder when 3rd beaten a short head and a head in 29.60.
Our only graded runner on Wednesday, Risky Flame, could not have been more impressive. Having his first ever race he showed great all round pace to win by 2 lengths in 26.31. On Saturday Emly Lee got no run when 3rd in her second race but Hollywell Dixie, who had been running well in defeat, made no mistake when winning by 3 lengths in 26.40 (-20). Bell Tempest ran better than of late when 2nd in the S1 beaten 1 1/2 in 39.18 (-60) and Risky Sensation made it 3 wins from 4 when coming from behind to land an A3 by just over a length in 26.76 (-30).
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACING - KINDA READY
GRADED - RISKY FLAME
WHAT'S ON THIS WEEK
Kinda Easy kicks the week off when he runs in the heats of the Futurity Puppy Trophy tonight at Nottingham. At Harlow on Wednesday Toasting Jack runs in the final of the Monkey Maiden Standard and Bell Tornado goes for another win in the heats of the Monkey Stayers. A big night for the kennel on Thursday as the Final of the Birmingham Cup sees our three runners Goldcrest King, Mountjoy Gold and Directors Ruler battle for glory. With a few other runners pencilled in for the Sky night as well it should be interesting viewing. Opens could be planned for Henlow (Thursday), Romford (Friday) and our two Springbok hopefuls Rockburst Mason and Bomber Bailey will be aimed at Wimbledon on Saturday. The GBGB Awards night in London is on Sunday.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Advised already Goldcrest King - ante-post 2pts e.w 20/1 Birmingham Cup
Kinda Ready - 2 pts win at Perry Barr Thursday
Pinewood Evo - 1 pt win at Perry Barr Thursday
Bomber Bailey - 1 pt win at Wimbledon Saturday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
MOUNTJOY RUBY - 2 point win Hall Green Tuesday - won 5/2