Monday 28th January 2008
Ballymac Under's impressive performance on Thursday when winning the Birmingham Cup final at Perry Bar has got greyhound racing in 2008 off to a perfect start on the track and if this is a taste of what's to come then we will have another exciting year just like 2007 which was lit up with canine talent such as Barnfield On Air, Spiridon Louis and our very own Eye Onthe Veto. Last Sunday's B.G.R.B Awards night at the Royal Lancaster was in my opinion the best ever and these special greyhounds plus the likes of Ballymac Under are all still in training and will no doubt cause plenty of debate again over the coming months.
A quietish week for the kennel with only the start of the Greene King Cup at Harlow on Wednesday being the main racing until Saturday's Pepsi Max Final in which we fielded three finalists and at Harlow Stride On Babe proved the fastest of the first round heat winners just to keep our kennel in the main headlines. We have over the last few weeks had a massive amount of new pups arrive at the kennel so we hopefully will produce some champions to challenge the likes of Ballymac Under and watch out for quality pups like King Jackson, Darling Nectar, Jonos Patience, Sevanta Ruler, Freedom Man, Centaur Lucky to name a few over the next few months.
Terrific news to any of our owners and friends visiting Imperial Kennels - the lane leading to our kennels has now been resurfaced and is now passable!! hooray no more mud! I can now drive my X5 down there instead of my battered Ford Courier Van (in my dreams!). We wish the best of luck to one of our former stars Roswell Starship who has travelled to Sweden to his new home with Fredrik Griberg where he will be spoiled and pampered as well as used at Stud.
The opening round of the Greene King Cup at Harlow on Wednesday was not without incident with the hare proving troublesome and causing one of the heats to be re-ru. Our first runners Millwards Summit and Stride On Babe were pitched in together and it was the latter that gained the initiative leading round the first bend and drawing away from the field to win by 10 lengths in a fastest of the first round of 37.84 (-25) with Millwards Summit qualifying in second. Eye Onthe Power got up in the last strides to dead heat with Best Mover in a trouble marred heat which saw the whole field find plenty of trouble resulting in a poor time 39.04 (-25) . In the final heat Genesis Dream despite being made odds on favourite ran well to finish second behind Vigorous Ashling in 38.29 (-25) and she should benefit enormously from her first sighting of the track.
A decent all Open card at Walthamstow on Saturday was well attended and the feature race the Pepsi Max Marathon final was full of incident and although we were represented by three runners it was only Genesis Alix which threw down a challenge and try as she might she just couldn't find a clear path and in the end finished a brave third but not behind expected winner Spiridon Louis (4th) but Swift Jade who managed to shrug off the unwanted attentions of Romford Car Three (there must be something in the name that makes them shall we say awkward!) before holding on to a short head victory in 53.07. Earlier in the evening our luck was not in as Bell Tempest came closest to a win but was still a well beaten second behind Baran Miami in the 835m Marathon until a battling performance from the gutsy Like Hot Cakes who followed her Hall Green Sky win with a victory in the 640m Stayers race by the minimum margin in 39.85. Centaur Cappo was very unlucky in the final race Div 2 of the stayers when unable to shake off trap 1 Placid Jill all the way round and eventually going down by a length to Barnfield Leo in 40.40 (-20).
Only five runners on the Bags on Monday with Cassius Clay coming closest to a win when beaten a short head after leading a long way in 29.57. Tuesday was to prove a fruitful night for two pups with a debut win for Imperial Singer after some much improved attempts and his win by 2 3/4 lengths in 29.63 could yet see this fella go on to better things. Another vastly improved pup is Macbart who landed a superb hat trick when taking an A6 in fine style leading at the third bend to score by 2 1/2 lengths in 29.23. Genesis Jose (4th) and old boy Armies Plan (3rd) both looked like their turn is just around the corner.
Thursday's card saw the return from season of promising pup Kissmedeadly who ran a blinder to finish second beaten half a length in 29.46. Another pup going the right way is Blue Wish and surely we will have to step her up in trip soon as she again finished strong when 3rd in a P6 behind Jumokee Beauty. In a tight S1 both Hoylake Claire (2nd) and Eye Onthe Jewel (3rd) were both touched off by Swift Leon. Directors Star showed great early and middle as he returned to the winners rostrum holding on to score by 1/2 length in 29.23 (-10) . In the other S1 Rhias Beauty was impressive when romping home by 4 1/4 lengths in 39.86 (-15). Bell Classic ran his best race for a while when runner up by a length in the A1 despite clocking a calc 28.89 himself. In the previous race Treacle Rose completed a fine night for the kennel when following up on the previous week's win with another victory in the A2 by 1/2 length in 29.26 (-10).
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACE:- STRIDE ON BASE
GRADED:- RHIAS BEAUTY
WHATS ON THIS WEEK
Our first lot of runners head to Crayford tonight with the Golden Jacket a couple of weeks away. We can expect decent runs from the likes of Tipp The Breeze who looks to have improved over the last few weeks with some fine trials to her name.
Springbok protagonists get their chance to shine on Tuesday at Wimbledon with a series of trial stakes and we have Eye Onthe Flame making his hurdle debut after some rigorous schooling from Jason Foster.
The semis of the Greene King Cup take centre stage on Wednesday at Harlow with all four of our entries looking to qualify for the following week's final.
Walthamstow is the place to be on Thursday as there will be plenty of open races with some Arc trial stakes being the feature of the night's racing.
On Saturday the first batch of trial stakes are on show at Monmore for their important Puppy Derby which gets underway and we may have some runners and triallers.
LIKE HOT CAKES The Betdirect Get Involved Trophy 2007, Hall Green
GENESIS ALIX The Freephone Betdirect Trophy 2007, Hall Green