Monday 3rd November 2014
(Opens to a third party website)
We are now only two weeks away from the first trial sessions at the new track Towcester and I can honestly say I feel very excited about the whole project. Towcester's Chief Executive Kevin Ackerman was like a breath of fresh air in our sport on Thursday when he was guesting on RPGTV. The calmness and genuine enthusiasm as well as a confident air of optimism shone through and nobody would be able to criticise the way he spoke and what plans he had for the future. I certainly appreciated the kind comments about myself and our team joining Towcester and I certainly feel like we will have a very successful relationship both on and off the track. We have been building up our team of Greyhounds and the level of interest from new owners as well as our current ones all bodes well for the future. We intend taking around 30-40 of our strength to both grade in and get ready for the superb open race programme that they have planned. Indeed the first two Saturdays at Towcester (6th/13th) will have some £65,000 of prize money on offer. Towcester are also seeking sponsorship for all types of racing and again I'm sure that all sponsors will be treated properly unlike some from other tracks who seem to take them for granted.
Everything Towcester seems to do has a certain touch of class about it from the restaurant to the bars and the hospitality suites let alone the track itself and already some huge attendances are expected right up until Christmas. I'm sure January/February might present some problems as it is a quiet time of the year, with the weather in mind, for any outdoor sport but rest assured Towcester will have this covered. An array of Category 1 and 2 competitions will bring the best dogs in training to Towcester throughout 2015 and that really excites me. Without putting the mockers on it we look certain to be crowned Champion kennel again and with a complete open race programme at Towcester we will have a strong base to be able to retain that title next year, that itself also genuinely excites me.
We might not have been successful in the two big competitions last week with two big outsiders in Ilewin Allot at Henlow last Sunday and Do It For Twiggy at Nottingham on Tuesday in the British Breeders Stakes Final but Toosey Fern landed a nice prize when winning the final of the Romeo Recruit At Stud Trophy just before the main final. It was very generous of Dave Firminger to put up £2,000 to the winner and Toosey Fern took her chance well when scoring in 29.86 (+30).
On Saturday at Peterborough Aero Twizzle looked to have got a horror draw in the S&D Bookmakers Sprint final clad in the orange jacket. Having been off for six months with a chipped bone on the wrist and a torn gracillis (both injuries sustained at the same time!) I was worried he might find trouble as the tight railer tried to get across the field but I need not have worried as he absolutely bolted out the traps and before the rest of the field had got into their stride he was two clear and on the rails. If winning the heat, as he did on Wednesday, was brilliant then winning this little final will go down as one of the most satisfying training performances from us all year! Owner Stuart Forsdike has also had his fair share of bad luck this year so having Aero Twizzle back and in form is a real tonic, that was also Twizzle's 17th win from 35 starts!
Tonight the Betfred Eclipse kicks off with six heats at Nottingham. Won last year by our brilliant Bridge Honcho we have an interesting recruit in Vanrooney, off injured since last July he is a class act having won the 2013 Harolds Cross Puppy Derby and one time Derby favourite this year. We have had to rush his trials a bit but if he can qualify he is sure to come on for the run. Blonde Razor, Benkaat Nero and Snappers Lad also go in this Category 1 event.
On Friday the second leg of the Bags/SIS Championship continues at Peterborough and both Yarmouth and Doncaster face a stiff task to reduce the home sides advantage. We have four runners in Kilmagner Mike, Adageo Lad, Saffrons Anna and Lets Havit Right.
Cornamaddy Jumbo suffered a rare defeat in the heats of the Triumph Hurdle at Romford on Monday. Worse still he was passed for a qualifying spot on the run in, a bump at the first bend as he and eventual winner Lenson Razldazl arrived at the turn together was his downfall.
A great card at a Nottingham on Tuesday in front of the Sky cameras and as always a tough place to find a winner or two. Our best chance looked to be Aero Babooshka in a 480m bitches race but a slow start saw her in the pack and then she was foced to check of wide before eventually finishing well down the field. Evanta El Greco ran well in a hot puppy race over 500m finishing a close up 3rd. Both Benkaat Nero and Snappers Lad ran well in 500m races and in the British Breeders Stakes final Do It For Twiggy looked dangerous when turning right behind favourite King Dec but his run petered out and though last he wasn't beaten that far. As said above we still landed a nice prize with Toosey Fern to make sure we didn't go home empty handed.
Our usual trip to Romford on Friday paid dividends again with three winners from our seven runners. Toosey Fern was tried quickly from Tuesday's race over 575m but looked in trouble at the 5th bend after leading finishing 4th in the end. She did noticeably slow down at the sough whilst also there was a lot of fireworks going off which didn't help. Aayamzaone back with a bang last week over the sprint trip ran even better this week in the 400m puppy race showing blistering early to take the scalp of the useful Ibiza Rocks in a terrific 23.87. Airforce Karla was another to use her good early pace to good effect but also battled hard to win the bitches open with the likes of Borna Karma behind her in a nice 24.11. A quick racecard treble followed when Huggies Buck returning from injury ran a stormer to come from behind in a decent 400m contest to land the spoils in 24.15. Aayamzamodel found an in form Fivestar Clipper too hot over 575m when 2nd.
On Saturday as said Aero Twizzle landed the S & D Sprint final in a flying 14.96 at Peterborough while our William Hill St Leger hopes bit the dust when Black Francis was eliminated in the second round at Wimbledon.
We certainly have had our fair share of winners at Yarmouth the last few weeks and on Saturday we had three runners in the first of the night's top grade races. Both Crown Jewel and Adageo Brae were unlucky but Saffrons Champ took his chance well along the rails to score by 3 1/4 lengths in 28.23. Fairest Royal having her 3rd run out of season came on a ton and destroyed an A3 field by 5 lengths in 28.45 and in another top grade race in form Benkaat Panther was unlucky when finding all kinds of trouble at the 1st and 3rd bends with Adageo Lad taking advantage to score by a length in 28.49, Billis Blitz was 2nd also in top grade leading to the run in.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Tonight the Betfred Eclipse gets under way at Nottingham and we have four runners with all eyes on the debut of Vanrooney for our kennel. In form Blonde Razor joins Benkaat Nero and Snappers Lad who all also bid to make next Monday's semi finals.
We will be at Romford on Friday and Henlow on Sunday.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
After a good run it didn't quite go our way last Tuesday at Nottingham especially as Do It For Twiggy finished out of the top four in the British Breeders Stakes at Nottingham. Back to the East Midlands track tonight for the Betfred Eclipse and Vanrooney is interesting priced up at around 16/1 but this is a high class event and he might just need the run. Snappers Lad has drawn an ultra tough heat but is running well at the moment and might be worth an interest at big odds.
SNAPPERS LAD - 1.5 pts e.w ante post 50/1 - Betfred Eclipse - Nottingham - starts tonight
ADVISED LAST WEEK
DO IT FOR TWIGGY - 1 pt e.w ante post 25/1 - British Breeders Stakes - Nottingham - lost
AERO BABOOSHKA - 3 pt win - Nottingham - Tuesday - lost