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Monday 26th August 2013


(Opens to a third party website)




I had quite a bit of response to some valid points I was making on our sport in a mammoth blog last week and I think I touched on some very important points not least the amount of owners walking away from the sport. I will carry on saying what I feel over the next few weeks but I may well have some major announcements soon as something big is currently happening this week that could affect many trainers and owners over the next few months but it is certainly a case of watch this space.

The Trainer of the Year title took a dramatic twist last week as our lead that we have held for most of the year has been lost as Chris Allsopp's team had a great week at his home track Monmore in the Ladbrokes festival and elsewhere for that matter and now we sit some 25 points behind Chris with both Charlie Lister and Paul Young right on our coat tails. With both Chris and Paul doubly represented in tonight's Nottingham Puppy Classic a Category 1 event we are looking at falling further behind. All four trainers have representatives in tonight's Paddy Power TV Trophy heats which also has Category 1 status and we have reigning champion Blonde Reagan and Aayamzabella looking to win this prestigious event.

The betting for the Ladbrokes Trainer of the Year title has seen the sponsors push us out to an incredible 8/1 and I would love to say that's value but sadly we have been hit hard by injuries and retirements and also with the likes of Jazz Tilly and Hometown Honey in season we could be struggling to stay in touch over the next month or so. We normally have around 35 open racers but counting our numbers this week that are available we only have around half that number fit to race. Our injury list now includes Planning (lame from last night), Ayamzaman (toe injury), Benkaat Nero (broken hock), Benkaat Blue (cut pad), Garryglass Rodge (wrist injury), Baran Bugatti (wrist injury) Benkaat Boy (broken hock-retired), Glanmire Lad (broken hock-retired) Murlens Crash (cut foot), Fairest Royal (muscle injury). We have Hometown Honey, Jazz Tilly, Swift Eire and Butterbridge Bri all in season, also on the open race front Carkie Max and Ayamzalad have been sold and have left our kennel for pastures new.

Lil RiskyOf course our most notable retirement or possible semi retirement is the beautiful and gifted Lil Risky. I have been a part of Imperial Kennels for over 23 years now and I can say without doubt 'Jimmy' has been the nicest and most likeable dog to have ever been at our kennels. I remember the raw pup that had just won an A3 at Newcastle arriving at our kennels and watched him develop into a magnificent race dog that won 46 of his 104 races (45 opens). Throughout this time he was one of the most laid back greyhounds you could come across and an absolute gentleman to the bitches he kennelled with (mainly Lil Magic) and 'Jimmy' will be sorely missed here by myself, Sarah, Linda and all our staff at Imperial Kennels. One word - irreplaceable! Of course for Jimmy it's going home time as he is now back with Jimmy Fenwick and his partner Melanie in the North East. It is hoped that Jimmy can cover a few bitches and there is talk of maybe even a veteran sprint race at Newcastle where he began his career. Undoubtably his racing highlight for us was his destruction of his field in last year's John Smiths Peterborough Derby final, a category 1 event he so richly deserved. I would like to thank his owners Brian Usher, Scott Fraser and Jimmy Fenwick for giving us the chance to train such a wonderful greyhound.

Greyhounds like Lil Risky, Blonde Snapper, Blonde Fletch and Glanmire Lad who made 2012 such a stellar year for us are impossible to replace and only come around occasionally but for us to capture big races and Derby's we will need to find them. We do have some potential in the likes of Blonde Razor, Sidaz Dippy and Garryglass Rodge but we will need to rebuild, if not for the rest of the year then certainly for 2014. Swift Sean has been snapped up by Dick and Ann Barfoot and will be renamed Adageo Lad shortly and despite only coming 3rd in a Maiden Final at Romford on Friday we still hold big hopes that he can emulate what their Glanmire Lad did last year and win the Coral Romford Puppy Cup that starts a week Friday. Benkaat Boomer and Strawpedo Jet will also be aimed at this event and all three of these pups could be future stars of our kennel

Tomorrow night at Sheffield a high class entry has been assembled for the Betfred Steel City Cup. Bridge Honcho, narrowly beaten in a tough trial stake last week leads our team of two with Peter Bridges' underrated Bridge Bandit, both should go well. Peter's Bridge Ruth is ante-post favourite for the Coral Brighton Belle after last weeks heat win she should go well in Thursday's semi-final which should be interesting now she's clad in the red jacket.



Sidaz Harris stumbled slightly out the traps in his semi-final of the Caffreys Puppy Classic at Nottingham on Monday and was always behind. On Tuesday in trial stakes for the Betfred Steel City Cup at Sheffield Killacolla Kaka and Bridge Bandit showed plenty of pace but were out of the first three while Bridge Honcho ran well in a warm division when a close up 3rd.

Bridge Ruth landed her heat of the Coral Brighton Belle on Thursday leading at the third bend to go on and win well in 29.99 while Darian Star was just beaten 3/4 length in her heat.

Reel Trickyone

On Friday at Romford Strawpedo Jet was a close up 2nd in a 400m Maiden while Swift Sean missed his break from trap 1 in the Coral On TV Maiden final but railed really well eventually finishing 3rd. Performance of the night on the whole card was undoubtably Reel Trickyone who bolted out the traps in a very warm 575m Stayers and never looked like getting beat and scored by over 3 lengths in a very fast 35.51 (-30).

No luck on Sunday in three opens at Coventry with Planning a good 2nd over 485m although he came off lame which is disappointing.






Hillcross Miami

On Saturday at Yarmouth we had two seconds from our 5 runners. Gunite Meg was a running on 2nd back over 462m as was Ilewin Frimley while Swift Rachel ran well in an A2 when 3rd.

Over at Coventry on Sunday Hillcross Dallas went down a neck in a fast 29.69 in an A4 but Hillcross Miami scored well in the same grade in 29.81.














Tonight the prestigious Paddy Power TV Trophy heats kick off at Yarmouth with defending champion Blonde Reagan and fast trial stakes winner Aayamzabella in action.

The heats of the Betfred Steel City Cup start tomorrow night at Sheffield and both Bridge Honcho and Bridge Bandit should go well.

It's back to Brighton on Thursday for the semi-finals of the Brighton Belle and both Bridge Ruth and Darian Star could have a big say in the outcome of the event.

We should also be at Romford Friday and Coventry on Sunday.




Sidaz Harris crashed out the Caffreys Puppy Classic but Bridge Ruth is safely through to the semi-finals of the Brighton Belle. Bridge Honcho is a juicy 25/1 for the Betfred Steel City Cup and is worth a decent punt at those odds.

BRIDGE HONCHO - 2.5 pts e.w ante-post 25/1 - Betfred Steel City Cup - Sheffield - starts Tuesday.






SIDAZ HARRIS - 2 pts e.w ante-post 16/1 - Caffreys Puppy Classic - Nottingham - lost

BRIDGE RUTH - 4 pts win ante-post 6/1 - Coral Brighton Belle - Brighton - semi-finals Thursday