Monday 31st December 2007
Well the end of another hugely successful year has come for us at Imperial Kennels and we all would like to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year!
My review of 2007 along with our Website Awards can be found on the Guest Column this week and I again would like to take this chance to thank the website team for the hard work they have put in to produce our magnificent site.
Our final position in the Trainers Championship was third, only about 70 points or so behind Champion Charlie Lister and we recorded 276 open wins that accumulated 926 points with 3 Category 1 wins. We also finished a very close second behind that man again! Charlie Lister in the Trainers Championship Meeting at Hall Green after a memorable battle.
Although the sport has a lot of problems to solve over this coming year we feel that greyhound racing is still one of the best leisure activities there is to take part in and I know many of our owners, like us, are looking forward to an exciting year on and off the track. Next week my staff and I will give you our top 3 greyhounds to follow from the kennel in 2008.
Congratulations to Peter Whates ('Tevez Hero 3') on winning our popular '5 to Follow competition' from nearly 300 entries. With the first prize of a puppy out of Elite State - Up In Lights due to come over in late Jan - early Feb it has already sparked off plenty of interest for when we run another competition next year.
With the Trainers Championship almost over we only had a few Opens left for the year and on Boxing Day a large crowd on a pleasant sunny day at Walthamstow saw some good action including a Puppy Final that, although only £300 to the winner (very poor prize money!), produced an excellent winner in Rockburst Mason who again, like he did in the heats, showed a lovely bit of pace to the bend to eventually go away and score comfortably in 28.89 and this fellow looks a terrific prospect for 2008. Blackmagic Rose ran very well in the Miaden final leading untill the last bend before going down by 1 3/4 legnths to Noirs Denis in 28.82. Our other open racing was at Sheffield on Saturday night where Missed A Train finished a good 4th in the Arnie Dennis Memorial Puppy Trophy Final. Rhias Beauty went up for the ride but came away with an excellent win in the 660m Maiden Stayers by 2 3/4 lengths in a calc 39.82.
The graded action on Boxing Day included a 3-way photo for Twilight Fantasy (3rd) and a win from Stride On Babe who showed a good attitude after being almost on the floor at the first bend and got up to win by a head in 29.24. Genesis Sister looked like making it six on the spin when she led the S1 but had no answers to the classy Dubai Adventure who passed and beat her by 4 1/4 lengths in a fast 39.78.
On Thursday's graded card we came close with Macbart, Special Roxi and Fear Charlie who were all second which left Fear Mykeo to keep the flag flying when she held on to win by 1/2 length in a calc 28.97.
Saturday night gave us a chance to have a look at some new pups making their debuts and both Centaur Elise (found trouble) and Genesis Jose ( green) should be better for the race as well as Chilli Blue who showed a nice bit of pace before succombing firstly to favourite Comeonthreedog and then our own Castlemary Podge who made an impressive debut going on to score by a 1 1/4 lengths in a very good 29.46 and will be a greyhound to keep a close eye on in the next few months! Danielles Dora has been off the card with a shoulder injury for over 8 weeks and despite this being only her first run back she ran well to land the spoils in 29.45. Another name to put in your notebooks is Lockdale Diamond who beat a good field in the P4 in 29.16 and just to round off a good night Centaur Iris won the Kennel Sweepstake by 1 1/2 lengths in 40.33.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACE:- ROCKBURST MASON
GRADED:- LOCKDALE DIAMOND
WHATS ON THIS WEEK
Walthamstow race on New Years Day and their first Opens of 2008 start on Thursday. We could well be entering at Harlow on Wednesday and are definitely going to enter Directors Chair and may be two others for the Prestige that starts on Friday at Hall Green and we could also be at Romford that night as well.