Monday 3rd December 2012
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READ MARK'S BLOG OF THE EXCITING
DERBY BUILD UP CULMINATING IN BLONDE SNAPPER'S FANTASTIC DERBY FINAL WIN
I know our kennel has had some fabulous results all through 2012 including the Greyhound Derby, St Leger and TV Trophy winners amongst others but I must admit to being as pleased as punch when our first Markwallisgreyhounds 'Racing Club' purchase I Am Titanium landed his debut win on Saturday at Yarmouth. It may only have been an A2 but the fact is this May 2011 whelp was only having his second start and is as 'green as grass' but he showed an electric burst of early and middle pace to win by 3 lengths on a bitterly cold night and stopped the clock in a very good 28.47 calculated time. He looks destined to be high class and could very well be stepping up into open racing soon. Our second purchas, the magnificently well bred Ollie Blue, delighted us in a handslip last Thursday and is due to have his first official trial this week. This is a perfect time if anyone would like to join our 'Racing Club' which entitles you to a share of these two exceptional pups and any future purchases. See our 'Racing Club' page for further details.
Again our open race team seem to be hitting the headlines in the two main competitions starting this week. Having nothing in the feature Sky race on Wednesday at Nottingham, the Betfred Eclipse, seemed strange with everything that's happened over the last couple of months so it was good to have plenty of hope of being represented when the last two Sky programmes for a few months finish with the Essex Vase and Oaks finals this month.
On Friday Planning (recommended by us in our website bets) landed heat 1 of the Coral Essex Vase at Romford in fine style beating kennel mate Darian Chief by over 4 lengths in a fastest of the night 35.24. Mountjoy Orion took her heat as well (35.95) but Blonde Fletch found all the trouble going and just failed to qualify. Adageo Brae (2nd) and Carden Twilight (3rd) gave us five semi-finalists for next Friday.
The William Hill Oaks winner's prize has been increased to a superb £15,000 this year and our assault on the event at Wimbledon began on Saturday. Risky Rosaleen was eliminated in the opening round but Ballintine Molly, enjoying a fine end to the year, showed how much she likes the Plough Lane circuit with a bold display leading all the way to score by 3 lengths in 28.88. Heat 6 was difficult with having no less than four runners involved and again to our kennel's credit we had the 1/2/3/4 with Aero Joker just missing out after nearly recovering from early trouble. Bridge Ruth showed why she was made second favourite for the event with fine 5 lengths success from Jazz Tilly and Ayamzabeauty, who was having her first run out of season, a fast finishing 3rd. The decision to miss the 'Night Of The Stars' at Shelbourne where Bridge Ruth could have run seems justified but also Airforce Diva sidestepped the event and after never looking at home around Wimbledon we wished we could have perhaps reversed that decision and gone to Dublin as she trailed in last in heat 8. She badly sliced a foot probably when checked on the second bend which didn't help but I'm sure she will come back to be a huge success in 2013.
We are not far off Christmas now and my 8 year old daughter Emily is getting very excited and gave me and Sarah her Christmas wish list, some reasonable some not so! bless her. This got me thinking that we need to give the GBGB and BGRF our trainers' and owners' Christmas wish list which is a bit more than just being a wish. Our list would contain some reasonable requests that might have to be met in order for us to be able to survive in the sport in 2013 le's start with:-
1 - Open race prize money for one off races at tracks that have Bags contracts to be increased (if they are not already at these levels) to no less than £200 for a win and minimum £40 for also rans WITH 10% OF ALL PRIZE MONEY BEING PAID DIRECTLY TO TRAINERS (Maiden races should be no less than £175 and £30).
2 - A restructuring of heats and semi-finals prize money in Category 1/2/3 competitions with minimum levels of not less than £200 and £50 for Category 1's, £175 and £40 for Category 2's and £150 and £30 for Category 3's with 10% OF ALL PRIZE MONEY TO BE PAID DIRECTLY TO THE TRAINERS.
3 - Open race prize money for one off races at non Bags tracks to be increased to £165 for winners and no less than £30 also ran money (£150 win £25 also rans for Maidens) with 5% being paid directly to trainers.
4 - A central fund controlled by the BGRF and GTA where tracks pay open race prize money into so they can distribute it out accordingly, much like Wetherbys do in horse racing.
5 - As mentioned by Gary Wiltshire when he appeared on RPGTV last Friday a new industry super jackpot is a must so we can attract people who could win life-changing money for a small outlay.
6 - Representatives from the GTA Committee to be allowed on the GBGB and BGRF committees.
7 - A GTA nomination to be allowed on the Board of Directors at the GBGB.
8 - The FBGOA to be disbanded in favour of a National Owners Association with its own committee and its Chairperson being allowed on the Board of Directors. Make this automatic membership for every owner who registers a greyhound (maybe add a small fee on registrations to cover costs of the new association). Keep the local Owners Associations as well to just deal with their own tracks and promoters.
9 - A massive injection of funds to give an incentive to kick start British breeding. Perhaps give breeders £300 for every pup they breed and rear, to be paid once the pup has had its first ever race. Also a breeder to be represented on the Board of Directors.
10 - A commercial strategy committee for the sport as a whole to be formed by the GBGB headed by someone like David Hood with some experienced business people from within the industry to seek out much needed outside sponsorship (owners with successful busineses to be invited on committee or to be asked for an input).
11 - A massive campaign to highlight the bookmakers that take bets on greyhounds and don't pay into the voluntary fund and to put pressure on them to pay up. Perhaps services like Oddschecker should be told that the offending bookmakers who are not contributors shouldn't be advertising ante-post prices and such like.
12 - Stating the obvious but Clive Feltham to relinquish any position he holds on the GBGB or BGRF while the GRA policy is to sell their tracks.
That's a massive Christmas wish list but we live in hope! and I haven't even started on my New Years wish list!
Talking of our impressive Essex Vase first round winner Planning who was advertised on our 'Dogs For Sale' page late in 2011 at a very reasonable price we have a very interesting young bitch on on the page currently. Fairest Royal a May 11 whelp recorded a fastest of the night 28.87 at Tralee a couple of weeks back. She looks like she could be a top class stayer in the making later next year. Although not cheap I'm confident this pup could be a decent buy for the right person or syndicate. I've found Tralee form to be very reliable over the years. Give me a call if you are interested. As well as Planning we have sold on our page this year the likes of Glanmore Lad (Romford Puppy Cup Winner), Newinn Chick (open race winner) Castlebride Dan (multiple open race winner) Dixies Air (multiple open race winner and runner up in the Sunderland Grand Prix) and other open race winners all at reasonable prices.
With only 4 weeks to go in our 5 To Follow competition the lead has again changed hands with Molly 2, who has come from out of the clouds in recent weeks, taking over from last week's leader Shamardal. With several contenders in with a chance of winning we are set for an exciting finish.
Again it was Thursday before we had our first open race action where Springdale Hawk was successful at Henlow over 550m holding on well to win by 1/2 length in 33.72 calc. Over at Hove Jazz Apollo was a fast finishing 2nd and Swift Lucozade a close up 3rd in a Maiden 515m.
On Friday at Romford the Coral Essex Vase kicked off and five of our eight runners qualified for the semi-finals with both Planning and Mountjoy Orion heat winners. No luck in the other races with both the prolific Ayamzaman and Glanmire Lad not in action.
On Saturday as said our Oaks campaign also got off to a fair start with Bridge Ruth and Ballintine Molly both successful in their heats.
On Sunday at Coventry only two runners in the Swettenham Golden Muzzle heats over 485m starting. As usual even with six heats the GBGB draw came back with ours both in together (can't believe how many times this happens to us over the course of a year!) but again to our credit, though not fancied by the track bookmakers, Castlebride Dan (6/1) caught kennelmate Aero Prince on the run in to win by 1 1/2 lengths in 29.82 (-30).
Only six runners on Saturday night and an excellent return of four winners. Toosey Faye on debut made a great start to her career coming from last to first to win an A6 in 29.80 (-60), in form Roberts Dancer scored by 6 lengths in an A4 in a career best 28.72 calc and magnificently Markwallisgreyhounds Racing Club's I Am Titanium won well in an A2 in a fine calculated 28.47, Darian Star capped off a fine night for the kennel winning in top grade in a very good 28.06 calc.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
A magnificent card this afternoon at Monmore with the Winter Festival producing some top prize money for their two run competitions. Benkaat Blue and BIdge Honcho go in the Dogs only 480m while St Leger and TV Trophy hero Blonde Reagan returns to the track he loves in the 684m Stayers and Lil Risky is looking to get his confidence back over a track and trip he won well at before.
On Thursday we will be at Henlow where the Maiden Derby kicks off and we should be well represented while over at Hove the Coral Sussex Puppy Trophy heats is the feature of their open race nights.
Also on Thursday the Bags Championship final leg could see it go right to the last leg with Peterborough a few points ahead of Yarmouth and hosts Romford not too far behind.
The Essex Vase semi-finals take place on Friday at Romford and on Saturday the William Hill Oaks continues at Wimbledon with the second round heats.
On Sunday we will be back at Coventry for the semi-finals of the Swettenham Golen Muzzle.
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Aero Joker was desperately unlucky not to qualify from the first round of the William Hill Oaks getting tangled up with our other runner Jazz Tilly but Ballintine Molly did us proud winning her heat.
A fabulous start to the Coral Essex Vase for our followers with Planning scooting round in a fastest of the night 35.24.
ADVISED LAST WEEK
AERO JOKER - 2 pts e.w ante-post 50/1 - William Hill Oaks - Wimbledon - lost
BALLINTINE MOLLY - 1.5 pts e.w ante-post 33/1 - William Hill Oaks - Wimbledon - continues Saturday
PLANNING - 1 pt e.w ante-post 16/1 - Coral Essex Vase - Romford - continues Friday