Monday 4th June 2007
This week we are waiting in anticipation for the start of this year's Blue Square sponsored Greyhound Derby at Wimbledon. The first round heats are to be split on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and in all we have 11 entries which I think is the most from any kennel. I would like to take this opportunity to wish all our owners the very best of luck and hope all our greyhounds entered come back safe and sound whatever their fate. These are our entries with sponsor's prices in brackets:-
Directors Wish (100-1)
Directors Chair (66-1)
Butterbridge Ali (66-1)
Eye Onthe Veto (100-1)
Discreet Cat (150-1)
Centaur Decree (66-1)
Killer Keane (125-1)
Eye Onthe Flame (200-1)
Fear Robben (66-1)
Fear Armani (100-1)
Raging Jack (100-1)
My assessment of the draw will be in the Whats On This Week column and yes I'm going to tip one - so sorry John and Anne Keane but my long range fancy is Killer Keane who is (125-1) with the sponsors but I'm sure he's a lot bigger elsewhere. Once again good luck to all.
Now! as promised our brand new 5 to follow competition is up for viewing and entry and please please! don't leave entries untill the last minute as you will be disappointed as there is only a limited number of entries available. I would like to once again thank Mick Licence for all his hard work not only setting up this competition (the design looks magnificent) but for their continued help in producing this great site. The first prize for winning the 5 to follow is an August 06 pup by Elite State out of the top brood bitch Up In Lights who has already thrown top open class offspring like Centaur Trooper and good class like Centaur Rover and Genesis Sister whom we train so this really is a sensational first prize. There will also be additional prizes so get your thinking caps on and pick your 5 greyhounds carefully(all greyhounds in entry list are available to view on our Feature Dogs Archive pages) to be in with a chance of winning. The winner will also have NO training costs and receive 50% of all prize money gained by this bitch so I think you would agree a prize worth thousands of pounds and just £10 to enter. Don't forget when entering, from the 5 selections 3 must be dogs and 2 bitches and also when sending the cheque to me make sure your team name is on the back. If any dogs listed are not available before the start of the competition and you have included them in your selections I will contact you so you can change your choice.
Sunday night's Greyhound Scene Gala night at Coventry organised by Dave Smith despite the terrible weather was a great success on and off the track and our four runners all ran well but it was the in form Not So Jolly who came away with a victory in the 480m. Monday was a busy day with a trip to Monmore for the Summer Festival taking place and Ronnies Hare was unlucky not to make Friday's final finishing third in the sprint heats but Fear Robben continued his Derby preperation by safely qualifying for the final when second to fastest heat winner Brooklyn Bridge. At Walthamstow Ronnies Callum hasn't quite recaptured his best form since a bad gracillis injury last year. When trying to defend his Ladbroke Hurdle title he ran well but was eliminated in third in his heat.
Tuesday was a who's who of canine talent at Wimbledon where the last batch of Derby trials took place and Eye Onthe Veto returned to form with avengeance when skating up by nearly four lengths in a fast 28.86 for the 480m Derby trip. Directors Chair advertised his claims for outright honours when being one of the only dogs to win on the rails and although his winning time of 29.26 was not great the manner in which he won was impressive. Centaur Decree totally missed his break when an odds on chance to win his Trial Stake and had it all to do and despite still running well was beaten but hopefully won't make the same mistake when the Derby gets underway. Directors Wish, Fear Armani and Discreet Cat all ran well in their respective Trial Stakes and in trials before racing Butterbridge Ali beat Killer Keane just under 2 lengths in a good 27.90 for the 460m. All in all we are pleased with our kennel's Derby hopefuls going in to next week's first round.
Wednesday was a disappointing night at Yarmouth in the T.V Trophy heats as Daisyfield Seanie couldn't get competitive and faded into 4th and with Snappy Girl almost on the floor at the first bend it was left to Genesis Alix who ran well finishing 4th but no runner from the kennel in Tuesday's final.
Thursday's open racing had Bubbly Magic and Raging Jack travel to Perry Bar for supporting races to the Scurry Final live on Sky and both ran very well finishing runners up. At Walthamstow a quiet night for opens with no luck from our few runners.
On Friday at Monmore Fear Robben returned to the scene of the his Studbook Trophy victory in the Summer Festival 480m final but with a tricky draw in trap 2 it was never going to be easy. Going into the first bend Robben was positioned well but getting involved in a tangle with trap 1 and 3 his chance disappeared and although well beaten he has came out of the race well and now looks forward to next week's Derby.
On Saturday at Walthamstow the valuable Graphite (U.K) Puppy Cup had eight heats. Pinehurst Silk was a creditable 4th in the first heat, Lockdale Duke is a pup coming forward all the time and blasting out of the boxes led to near the line finishing second to qualify for thenext round. Eye Onthe Power continues to frustrate once again getting involved in trouble at the first bend when in contention and finished out of the frame. Ardmayle Machine ran well in heat 3 but finished 4th but in heat 4 the unlucky Twilight Fantasy and Rather Rapid did each other no favours and were also knocked out. At last Like Hot Cakes got the kennel off the mark running well to win heat 5 and both litter mates Paid In Cash and Night Night qualified in heats 6 and 7. In the final heat the improving Kinda Sure won with a turn of real early pace to score his saecond win this week in a good 29.04.
A quiet week on the graded front with one winner on Monday's BAGS card, Emly Outlaw who made it two wins from four starts with an impressive victory in an A8 in a decent 29.39. Certainly a pup on the upgrade and this big blue dog an August 2005 is for sale if anyone is interested. With only a few graded runners on Tuesday,Thursday and Saturday because of open races taking centre stage, good chances of winners were limited but Chase The Dream for owner Clive Lawrence ran well to dead heat in 29.24 which was pleasing and on Saturday, fresh from Sunday's Coventry success, Not So Jolly won the A2 catching Treacle Rose (who was making a bold bid for a four timer) near the line to score in 28.96. Coolanga Flyer was an unlucky second in the S1 and looks sure to be winning soon.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACE - EYE ONTHE VETO
GRADED - EMLY OUTLAW
WHATS ON THIS WEEK
A busy week of action this week with open runners at Yarmouth in the supporting races for the T.V Trophy live on Sky. Fear Mykeo looks to have a decent chance in her bitches only race. The second round of the Graphite puppy competition is on Thursday at the Stow and hopefully puppies like Lockdale Duke, Like Hot Cakes, Night Night and Kinda Sure can continue to improve to get in to the semi's. We will have runners back on Friday at Romford but our main action will be on Thursday/Friday and Saturday as the Blue Square Greyhound Derby starts with 185 entries and 11 from our kennel trying to win the premier event of the year with a winning prize of £100,000, so here's a quick review of how I feel about our chances after watching the first round draw on the Blue Square webcast:-
Thursday:- Our first 2007 Derby runner to take his chance will be Discreet Cat and with two of Ireland's runners Forest Scholes and Anycrackjack in trap 1 and 2 and Andy Johnson's Mango Tango in trap 5 it's sure to be competitive. Cat has the ability to qualify.
In heat six Simon Wooder will be spitting blood seeing two of his runners pitched in the same heat but to be fair it looks a good heat for his ante-post favourite to strut his stuff and win comfortably. We have Simon's consistent Fear Armani in trap 2 and I would fancy him to qualify with trap 5 Highbury Lao behind Haribo.
In heat eight Butterbridge Ali has got Terry Dartnall's useful Farloe Jester to beat - his pacey dog is as short as 20-1 in some books. Also Owen Mckenna's Astronomic is on Ali's outside in trap 6 and he has gone down in a few notebooks for this year's event so it won't be plain sailing to qualify but he has got the luxury of four going through in this heat.
I was hoping not to get any of ours drawn together but heat ten see's both Raging Jack and Eye Onthe Veto compete but I must admit I would be disappointed if they both didn't qualify in what appears to be a weaker heat although Veto's draw in trap 4 is far from ideal.
Friday:- Iceman Ross will be a warm order in heat fourteen where we have Eye Onthe Flame who I must admit has a great draw in trap 5 so if he can run to his best he would certainly not be without a chance of getting through to the next round.
Our other runner on Friday is the strong running Directors Wish and it would be a major blow if he did not get through and to be fair if he has any chance, and he is only 66-1 of winning the Derby, he should win this kind of heat comfortably with only Charlie Lister's Farloe Premier a possible danger.
Saturday:-We have to wait until heat twenty eight for our next runner. This comes in the shape of potential superstar Centaur Decree and he has been drawn against some pacey indivduals, notably Greenwell Flash, and if he breaks like he did last week in the Trial Stake I will be looking at my calendar on Monday morning for a race for him elsewhere!
Heat twenty nine has again got two of our entries together - Killer Keane in trap 1 and Fear Robben in trap 2. I must admit I would have prefered them drawn the other way round and it's a good heat with Greenwell Storm, who is only 33-1 with the sponsors to win the Derby, in opposition as well as the useful Alternative Plan and Roxholme Ryan.
Our last runner and by no means least is the fast Directors Chair and what a good race it should be between him and joint ante-post favourite Droopys Robinho and also with Zigzag Dutchy in trap 5 it should be a race to savour and it's tough but I expect 'Dev' to come through.
So there we have it. Some possibly hard races and a few good chances of winning and I'd say I'm reasonably happy with the way the draw has worked out so once again good luck - not just to our runners but to everyone taking part in this year's Derby.