Monday 8th October 2007
A great week of action on and off the track. Controversy surrounded an unbelievable decision in the prestigious Harolds Cross Puppy Derby Final on Friday where the result was allowed to stand after one of the runners (Outandgoodnight) was knocked over at the first bend and then rejoined the race as the leaders were approaching the winning line. With Kryptonite looking like the race was in the bag he was made to swerve, handing the race to kennel mate Royal Treason. After watching the race again and again you can't help thinking what an injustice was done and the rule in Ireland certainly needs amending.
The Breeders Forum Produce Stakes is in full swing with John Mullins holding a strong hand with the top class Toosey Blue a worthy favourite and Barnfield On Air is still dominating the Laurels at Belle Vue which concludes on Tuesday and is live on Sky. Our kennel also seems to be in good form with plenty of winners this last week and two names to watch out for in the next few months are Eye Onthe Force and Lindys Girl who both impressed at Romford on Friday and with the Romford Puppy Cup coming up in three weeks time Eye Onthe Force looks a real prospect to keep the cup in our kennel after Roswell Starship's victory last year. Lindys Girl is just out of season so, although her winning time was only moderate, she is certain to improve and the Oaks is her main target. Talking about Romford, as I collected the trophy for Eye Onthe Force with owner John Keefe I was presented with a superb engraved silver plate recognising our achievement in sending out a kennel 1/2 in the final of the Essex Vase - a really nice touch that was very much appreciated. On a sadder note and just to bring us down to earth we had to have youngster Rather Rapid put to sleep after he suffered a severe injury at Walthamstow on Saturday night.
Congratulations to popular owners Jamie and Ros Langley on the birth of their first child, a girl named Abigail, and bad luck Jamie about the rugby mate - I suspect you're in for plenty of stick this week!
Tuesday night at the Stow sees another Greyhoundscene forum night and love it or hate it they are very popular and I guarantee that attendance and tote turnover will be the most it has been on a Tuesday for a fair while and praise should be heaped upon the enigmatic Dave Smith for the way he is bucking the downward trend that greyhound racing is going through at the moment.
Allglaze Cruise qualified for the second round of the Breeders Forum Stakes at Hall Green on Tuesday and Ortuna was a comfortable winner in her heat of the Monkey Maiden Stakes at Harlow on Wednesday beating the odds on favourite Patterdale Nina by nearly 3 lengths in 26.32. Fear Robben was pitched into one of the hottest races seen at Henlow on Thursday for quite a while and another poor break left him trying to play catch up which was too hard and now Robben will be put away for a few weeks with the Racing Post Festival in mind. Daisyfeild Matti made the trip to Henlow worthwhile with a good win in the 550m maiden in 34.20. On the same night at Walthamstow Blackmagic Rose was beaten by the draw when 3rd in the 475m Maiden and in only his second race back from injury Centaur Decree came from behind to secure a quick-fire double after Saturdays return win. This time he came home 1 1/2 lengths to the good in 29.16 (-20). Centaur Fugi ran another great race to finish second in the 835m Marathon but Discreet Cat has gone off the boil and could only finish 3rd in the 640m Standard and Raging Jack couldn't follow up Saturday's win in the top division of the 475m Standard when 4th to the impressive Noirs Ted. At Romford on Friday we sent a few runners and not expecting too much we were pleasantly suprised with some good runs and wins from our team. The night started with veteran Roswell Spaceman 3rd in the sprint and Ants Gunner nearly pinched the 400m Maiden when leading to the run in before finishing 3rd. The top division of the maiden looked on paper a fair race and pup Eye Onthe Force, having been highly tried at Walthamstow, was an 8/1 shot but after a good break he turned the first two bends in second place behind pacesetter Citizen Skipper and with a real turn of speed he joined and passed the leader with ease and scored an eye catching win in a good 24.24 (+10) In the bitches 400m Lindys Girl was having her first run for the kennel and although expected to be needing the run it came as a surprise to see her leading out of the first bend and plugging on gamely she went on to win in 24.56 at odds of 10/1 - something I don't think you will see again! Sad news which dampened the result was the bad injury to Jim Reynolds Kilsheelan. Directors Chair was put in a 4/6 firm favourite despite a 0-4 record at the track but the bookies were spot on as he was always travelling sweetly and swept pass leader Dainty Prince to win by over 3 lengths in 35.84(+30). Lode Star tried over eight bends for the first time was 2nd in the 750m behind well backed favourite Hoylake Patrick. At Hall Green Allglaze Cruise was just run out of a qualifying place when 4th in the second round of the Breeders Forum Stakes.
A good day at the Monday BAGS meeting with Bell Classic scoring a long overdue win when catching Blackmagic Rose to win by 2 lengths in a calc 29.00. Gooney Bird and Bowlers Bullet both 2nd but looking likely winners next time were followed by a debut win for owner 'Mitch Millward' s Millward Summit who was impressive when leading all the way and her time of 29.26 (-10) was very good. In the next race we provided the forecast as Ants Gunner went past Lady Asher at the 4th bend to score in 29.40 (-10). On Tuesday a debut win for Megusta Manners in 29.56(+20) and good runs from Tenbucks Ebony (3rd) and Lockdale Prince (2nd) were the pick of our seven runners. On Thursday a couple of graded races were on the usual open race card and not for the first time in the week we had the forecast in the A2 with Bell Classic following up Monday's win to pip Coolanga Flyer on the line in 29.34 (-20). We had plenty of runners on Saturday's excellent graded card and in a warm puppy race Aero Blackjack was made a clear favourite and when he led out of the traps it looked like he would oblige but Elusive No Doubt is getting better all the time and he quickly passed his kennel mate to go on and score in a good 28.99. Ingenious ran well in the S1 finishing 3rd and it was nice to see the return of Blue Rizzler after injury has kept him out for nearly three months. This fast starting blue dog hadn't lost any early and blitzed to a 4.86 split and surprised everyone when hanging on to score by a neck in a good 28.95. Lockdale Lady and Vigorous Whitney both just failed to catch Mystical Haka in the A2 before Lockdale Duke went one better to win his A2 by nearly 2 lengths in 29.14 at juicy odds of 8/1. Shelbourne Ryan was given a decent chance in his A1 and didn't disappoint as he found himself in the unusual position of leading around the first bend and it was plain sailing from there and his winning time of 28.80 was good. Ortuna and Armies plan both ran OK when 3rd and 4th respectively in a good A1 won by Who Needs Wings and Genesis Alix wont be too far away from a win after finishing 3rd in the S2.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACE:- EYE ONTHE FORCE
GRADED:- MILLWARDS SUMMIT
WHATS ON THIS WEEK
As mentioned above, on Tuesday at Walthamstow is the Greyhoundscene Forum night. We also have Lockdale Lady and Treacle Rose on at Hall Green in the heats of the Midland Oaks and on Wednesday we should have a decent chance in Harlow's Monkey Maiden with in form Ortuna. An all open card is expected at Walthamstow on Thursday where Centaur Decree is hoping for a hat trick of wins since returning from injury and we will probably have runners at Romford on Friday. The much awaited St Leger starts at Wimbledon on Saturday and Butterbridge Ali will be the kennel's leading fancy to secure this classic.