Monday 5th August 2013
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It has been a busy last couple of weeks for the kennel as we are right in the thick of the open race competition season. With the incredibly warm weather, staff and personal holidays it has been a tough job trying to cope with it all but on reflection it has been mostly positive although losing our Romford Puppy Cup winner Glanmire Lad to a career ending injury has been a bitter blow.
Let's start where we left off and what a brilliant and thrilling win it was for Hometown Honey up at Sunderland in the William Hill Grand Prix final. It was impossible to split her and Calzaghe Lilly in the £15,000 decider and the first and second prize was rightly shared. Hometown Honey may have subsequently finished last at Nottingham on Tuesday in the Betfred Select Stayers race but the bias towards the inside runners made it impossible for her to win. Plans are now on hold for Honey as she has come into season.
I literally came straight back from Sunderland and went on a weeks' family holiday and looked forward to hearing the result of the high class Henlow Cold Cup final on the Sunday. Both Planning and Benkaat Nero suffered from a moderate start and managed to spoil any chance they might have had when they came together at the halfway stage and eventually both were well beaten by the impressive Airport Captain.
Both the Category 1 John Smiths Peterborough Derby and the Coral Sussex Cup kicked off and Ayamzaman scored a success at Peterborough before being knocked out at the semi-final stage while defending champ Lil Risky did brilliantly to qualify right through to Saturday's final where he was a brave 4th behind the track record smashing Frisby Barney, a great effort from our veteran.
Bridge Honcho led the way for our Sussex Cup team winning his first round heat in great style and then grabbing that all important second spot in last Thursday's semi-final. Jazz Apollo and Benkaat Blue both qualified for the semi's as well but sadly Jazz Apollo was badly dehydrated from his excursions in the first round and was not able to take his place in the semi's while Benkaat Blue just missed out on a final spot when 3rd. It's a remarkable recovery from a bad injury for Bridge Honcho and, in what is a very high class final this Wednesday, he will not be without a chance of landing this prestigious event for excited owner Peter Bridges.
Peter was pleased to see both his entries Bridge Ruth and Bridge Bandit qualify in Friday's Coral Champion Stakes first round with the underrated Bridge Bandit quite impressive when taking his heat in fine style. This was the highlight for our kennel where overall we had mixed fortunes. Planning and Reel Trickyone also qualified for this Friday's semis but Blonde Reagan, Sidaz Dippy (badly stumbled out the traps), Killacolla Kaka, Blonde Bobby, Benkaat Nero and Fairest Royal all bit the dust at the first round stage. Reel Trickyone is worthy of a mention as he is running out of his skin and the week before the Champion Stakes first round he took the Coral On TV Maiden Stayers Final in fine style winning in a good 35.69.
Agonisingly the only real disaster for our kennel was the bad injury suffered by Glanmire Lad a week last Friday when contesting a warm 400m Standard race at Romford. Racing clear of his field something clearly went amiss off the second bend where he broke down. An x-ray later revealed a double fracture of the hock and on advice and discussions with his devoted owners Dick and Ann Barfoot it was decided to retire him. It was a short career for Glanmire Lad but he achieved more than what most open class greyhounds do winning 11 of his 26 open races and importantly landing the Category 1 Coral Romford Puppy Cup. He is a beautiful laid back greyhound and is a perfect patient at home and after he has recovered Dick and Ann may well breed a litter using Glanmire Lad and would also welcome any enquiries from anyone else interested in using him as a stud dog.
We have many interesting and good class greyhounds for sale on our website in the next couple of days. Carkei Max, who is being prepared for the East Anglian Derby, has been for sale for the last couple of weeks or so and much to my surprise he is still available and at the price I would consider to be very good value for a Derby quarter-finalist.
Coming on will be the likes of Blonde Razor (formerly Swift Munster) who has already won opens at Hove in a fine 29.92 and first time up at Nottingham in 30.02 in his 8 races to date. He looks one of the best staying prospects I have seen for quite a while and is still only an October 11 whelp, only serious offers will be considered for this Kinloch Brae x Swift Eva pup.
Swift Sean is only a December 11 pup and in his 8 races has already won an A2 and two A1's at Yarmouth and could be a leading contender in the forthcoming Romford Puppy Cup.
Blonde Bobby has only raced in open class and has won 4 times from 14 races including a flying 29.13 at Coventry. Already a winner at Romford over 575m he was unlucky when eliminated in Friday's Champion Stakes. A big 36 kilo July 11 whelp he would be a fine acquisition for someone looking to buy a decent open racer and also could turn into a St Leger candidate later in the year.
Also for sale will be Swift Obama (28.68 Yarmouth winner), Swift Rachel (28.53 Yarmouth winner) and Toosey Milly (28.60 Yarmouth winner). All these young greyhounds are for sale only for a limited time at discount prices only to stay in our kennel, call me on 07721778297 if you are interested.
OPEN RACING (22nd July - 4th August)
Fairest Royal got her staying career off and running with a win in the heats of the Coral On TV Maiden Stayers with a 4 1/2 length win in 35.82 (+20) while Reel Trickyone qualified when second in his heat.
The John Smiths Peterborough Derby kicked off and defending champion Lil Risky was just touched off by a head and Benkaat Boy qualified in 3rd. Ayamzaman scored by a 1/2 length in 25.47.
At Hove the Coral Sussex Cup saw Bridge Honcho romp in by 8 lengths in a fine 29.69 while Benkaat Blue and Jazz Apollo were both 2nd.
At Romford a great start from new recruit Killlacolla Kaka winning a 575m Maiden in a fine 35.59 calc while Benkaat Nero easily took the other division in 36.03. In the Coral On TV Maiden Stayers Final Real Trickyone ran superbly leading at the 5th bend to win convincingly in a fine 35.60 with Fairest Royal in 3rd place. Only the injury to Glanmire Lad ruined a great night.
At the weekend Lil Risky and Ayamzaman both qualified for the Peterborough Derby semi-finals when 2nd and 3rd respectively and on Sunday at Coventry Darian Star could only finish 5th in the high class Lady Godiva final but there was a win for Aayamzabella in a match race against Lone Reggie over 672m.
At Nottingham on Tuesday Hometown Honey ran well in the Betfred Select Stayers despite being last with the wides at a distinct disadvantage and on Wednesday Lil Risky qualified for the Peterborough Derby final when a well beaten 2nd behind Any Dak with Ayamzaman unlucky when challenging at the 3rd bend before being knocked back to last.
The semi-finals of the Sussex Cup on Thursday were real quality and Bridge Honcho had to battle hard to qualify behind Express Master but Benkaat Blue was eliminated in 3rd place.
On Friday the Champion Stakes kicked off at Romford with mixed fortunes for our ten entries. Blonde Reagan and Fairest Royal failed to qualify with Planning running a stormer after serious early bother to come through and nick 3rd spot. Both Benkaat Nero and Blonde Bobby did each other no favours when eliminated and in another heat Bridge Ruth recovered from a tardy start to run on and pinch 3rd spot at the expense of Killacolla Kaka. Reel Trickyone ran a gutsy race to finish 2nd behind the impressive Airport Captain with Sidaz Dippy returning from seasonal rest stumbling badly from the boxes and losing any chance of progressing. Bridge Bandit was the star on the night for us showing suoerb early and middle pace to win comfortably in 35.79.
Lil Risky put up a brave effort defending his John Smiths Peterborough Derby title but was only 4th on Saturday and at Sittingbourne on Sunday Baran Bally Hi was knocked over in the final of the Hurdles contest but thankfully seems none the worse. Swift Zach showed a lot of promise at Coventry when second in a decent Puppy 450m.
YARMOUTH AND COVENTRY REVIEW
Hillcross Dakota was a surprise 10/1 winner on the 24th at Coventry and again was our only winner at 5/2 a week later.
At Yarmouth on the 27th there were wins for Swift Obama (28.68) and Swift Zach (28.79) while Aero Twizzle came closest of our runners last Saturday when 2nd.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Tonight Sidaz Harris, Blonde Razor and Saleen Bolt trial tonight at Nottingham in preparation for the Puppy Classic.
The Sussex Cup final is the feature of the Sky card at Hove on Wednesday and Bridge Honcho will look to dominate from the off.
At Romford on Friday the Champion Stakes semi-finals see Planning, Bridge Ruth and Reel Trickyone all thrown in together while Bridge Bandit will have to be at his best in his semi.
On Saturday Carkei Max goes on the East Anglian Challenge as Yarmouths late summer opens build up to their Derby.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Bridge Honcho is sitting pretty for us in the final of the Sussex Cup this Wednesday. Holidays meant I never got the chance to put my fancy up for the Champion Stakes at Romford but it would have been Bridge Ruth and still is and as luck would have it she is still trading around the 12/1 mark after her first round defeat, with a clear run she is still capable of winning this event.
BRIDGE RUTH - 2 pts e.w ante-post 12/1 - Coral Champion Stakes - Romford - semi's Friday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
BRIDGE HONCHO - 2 pts e.w ante-post 16/1 - Coral Sussex Cup - Hove - final Wednesday