We are now at the Quarter Final stage of the Greyhound Derby and our one remaining entry Drumcrow Brent is still in the event, a fantastic run in Saturday's 3rd round where he was narrowly beaten by the highly thought of Ballymac Fairone saw him safely through. That was his best run to date and he could just be peaking at the right time, it’s all about qualifying and Brent has drawn a tough but not impossible heat with Deerjet Sydney being a warm order to win. For the first time Brent has a wide runner inside him and that will be his biggest challenge as Pacemaker Ted is a real early paced sort. Thankfully Brent still has the stripes and could turn in a handy pitch if breaking in his best style, to make the semis would be awesome and who knows, we can still dream of glory!
Saturday is the start of a festival of open racing at Towcester beginning with the heats of the Derby Plate and we have two entries in Ivy Hill Skyhigh and Fatboyz Exile and the week after an array of competitions start that support the Derby final. Disappointingly there will be still crowd restrictions in place and the usual effort to maintain social distancing etc. There should still be a big crowd present and a great atmosphere, we will look to try and get as many runners on as we can.
Has Towcester been unfairly criticised is the question? trap 1 is no good, the boxes move when they open, they are not flush to the floor, they open slowly, the hare is too long, the first bend is too tight, etc etc. Kevin Boothby has done everything in his power to try and adjust and improve everything about the track in challenging times. Facilities and kennels etc are always trying to be improved and still he faces an enormous amount of criticism, a lot of these are the same people who had a lot to say about the previous Towcester regime, it’s too wide, straights are too short, wide runners have no chance etc etc, it makes you wonder why he even bothers. We are in a worldwide pandemic, greyhound racing still doesn’t get any financial help from the government and the bookmakers only pay what they have to. The welfare, rightly so, has to be whiter than white costing the industry a fortune and trainers are getting less money than ever before and total prize money is falling way below what is needed to bring stability and a bright future. While all this is happening Kevin has signed a deal to reopen two tracks in Oxford and Mildenhall in the next few months, the man deserves to be knighted in my opinion not criticised.
Away from the Derby we have a brilliant Kent St Leger final to look forward to at Crayford on Saturday. The Category 1 event sees a field as good as the Golden Jacket final back in February and our Bo Shine Bullet is just shading favouritism and like the Golden Jacket she goes into the final unbeaten. This time we are hoping for better luck and I’m liking the trap 3 draw as I think she can break better, she will need to if she is to clear the inside runners who have early pace, out wide we have two powerful finishers so even a good break and a lead won’t guarantee success but certainly will help. Both Baby Bullet and Aayamza Lexie go in the supporting 540m final.
I just don’t know where the time goes these days as the weeks/months seem to fly by, even in this pandemic. We are organising our 5 To Follow competition which is free to enter and will have a nice prize or two for the leading teams. Rules are simple, pick 5 from our kennel strength which must include three dogs and two bitches, you can have up to 5 different teams. The scoring starts from 1st July and it’s 10 pts for a win + bonus points on SP returns. A new updated list will be available in September and if you wish to change your team you will be able to and that new team will start from October 1st, the competition ends on December 31st. Let’s support this as it takes a lot of work and I would love to see 250 - 300 teams.
A busy Friday night at Romford wasn’t over productive with just the one winner with Blueberry Bullet
most impressive winning a Maiden 575m in an excellent 34.04, only an August pup she looks to have a bright future.
On Saturday we were at three tracks. Our main focus was on Drumcrow Brent at Towcester in the Greyhound Derby 3rd round and a good break saw him contending and in a battle royale with Ballymac Fairone who just got the better of him by a head in 29.53 but he was safely through.
Over at Crayford Bo Shine Bullet was impressive in her Kent St Leger semi final beating Droopys Dial by 5 3/4 lengths in 45.27 but Fatboyz Trixie went out when third in her semi final. In the supporting 540m competition Baby Bullet was fastest of the three heats when winning well in 33.92 and Aayamza Lexie took her heat in 34.04.
We also took a team of six to Monmore and came back with three winners. Fatboyz Exile (28.59) and Ballymac Gaybo (29.03) took maiden 480’s while Antigua Mememe won on his staying debut over 630m in 38.17 to complete an excellent Saturday night.
HENLOW & TOWCESTER REVIEW
No winners at either place until Thursday where Tiffield Beauty won well in an A4 in 29.97. On Sunday Muxton Teddy now at the veteran stage completed an excellent hat trick of wins in A1’s beating kennel mate Drumcrow Bruce in 27.71 recording his 19th win in 70 odd starts.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACING - BLUEBERRY BULLET
GRADED - MUXTON TEDDY
WHAT’S ON NEXT WEEK
A few runners at Romford on Friday and a huge day on Saturday with Drumcrow Brent going in the quarter finals of the Greyhound Derby at Towcester and Bo Shine Bullet bids for glory in the Category 1 Kent St Leger Final at Crayford.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Drumcrow Brent's run in the Greyhound Derby continues as we reach the quarter final stage at Towcester on Saturday and Bo Shine Bullet still carries our money in the Kent St Leger Final at Crayford.
Agincourt Xena ran well but was only second at Romford on Friday. Best bet for the weekend has to be Ivy Hill Skyhigh in the heat of the Derby Plate on Saturday at Towcester.
IVY HILL SKYHIGH - 4 pts win - Towcester - Saturday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
AGINCOURT XENA - 3 pts win - Romford - Friday - lost
DRUMCROW BRENT - 1 pt ew ante post 125/1 - Greyhound Derby - Towcester - continues Saturday
BO SHINE BULLET - 5 pts win ante post 6/4 - Kent St Leger - Crayford - Final Saturday
FATBOYZ TRIXIE - 2 pts each way ante post 12/1 - Kent St Leger - Crayford - lost