(Opens to a third party website)
RUBY, RUBY, RUBY, RUBY!! Was the cry from the many people that backed Rubys Rascal on Wednesday at Perry Barr as our star stayer bolted up in the £25,000 to the winner William Hill St Leger, it was a glorious moment both for our kennel and owner John Clarke as we picked up the trophy at the podium. For John it was a third decent competition win this year after Rascal's sister Rubys Razzle won the Prestige at Hall Green and Tigerloans Stayers at Harlow as well as many other open races. Rubys Rascal looked to have a plum draw in trap 1 in the biggest staying race of the year but tardy breaking had been an Achilles heel all year, again he didn't trap brilliantly but marginally better than of late but this time he was super fast into his stride. As expected Charlie Lister's Keplar Nine led up to the bend and swept to the front around the first turns but Rascal had comfortably cleared the rest of the pack and turned in a brilliant pitch just behind the leader, there was only only going to be one result after and Rascal powered past the leader to go on and win by 4 1/2 lengths in 42.99.
This was now a magnificent fifth St Leger victory in eight years for Imperial Kennels equalling the famous Jack Harvey's record set some 40 odd years ago and since the first one for Kinda Easy in 2009 the dominance in this toughest of tough competitions is truly awesome. It has powered us to a 150 point lead in the Trainer of the Year standings and with just under two months to go it looks like a ninth title is heading our way. Rubys Rascal now tries to repeat the stunning double that Blonde Reagan achieved in 2011 when winning the St Leger and the TV Trophy within a month of each other and Rascal's stamina will be tested to the limit when the heats start this Saturday at Towcester over 906m, one thing for sure he loves Towcester and if he is going to stay a true marathon then this is the one. Lord Hesketh's Ribble Atom bids to make a third consecutive TV Trophy final, which in itself would be a magnificent achievement, Kiltrea Mike, who was second in a Trial Stake last week and Saffrons Bonnie will also be entered.
Bruisers Bullet was eye catching in defeat at Nottingham last Monday when 3rd in the heats of the Betfred Eclipse and tonight faces another tough draw in trap 4 but if he can clear the inside runners he will make the final. It certainly will take some winning as this year's renewal is as good a class as I've ever seen, certainly winning the St Leger last week has seen us on a high and anything is possible now, I have a good feeling going into the race.
As said, on Monday Bruisers Bullet qualified for the semi finals of the Betfred Eclipse at Nottingham when battling to a 3rd place when badly hampered all the way to the third bend. Scolari Sound was second in the heats of a minor sprint event.
On Friday at Romford Droopys Dresden made it four from four when taking the Friday Night 500 Stayers Final beating a good field in 35.25 and seems a dog improving with every run. Rubys Razzle beat kennelmate Boylesports Duke in 35.35 and Roswell Romanov was a touch unlucky when 2nd in a 575m but is warming up for the Essex Vase nicely.
No luck in the ECC Puppy Derby semi finals at Towcester on Saturday. Kilcree Diamond showed superb early pace in the opening semi but was just caught from behind off the second bend and shuffled back through the pack, and Honest Robber missed his break in a hot second semi final and never looked likely to qualify though I'm sure both our pups have hugely promising futures.
Only a few runners on Tuesday with Garryglass Tiger an impressive winner in an Owners Bonus series heat in 28.39.
On Saturday morning a good win from Gully Foyle in 28.39 while in the evening we had a good night where Swift Windmill won well in an A4 in 28.44, Shlowdown Sally won again in a top grade sprint in 15.40, a fine win for Cincinnati beating kennelmate Fire Height Josh in a very good S1 in 41.72 and Fleetwood Royal showed superb early to take an A3 in 28.60.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACING - RUBYS RASCAL
GRADED - SWIFT WINDMILL
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Tonight the semi finals of the Betfred Eclipse look super difficult and Bruisers Bullet has a tough draw, Scolari Sound goes in a Sprint Final.
On Wednesday the Sky cameras are at Towcester for the ECC Timber Puppy Derby final and we have runners on the supporting card.
On Friday plenty of our hopefuls will be getting ready for the Essex Vase amongst other opens and on Saturday the TV Trophy heats kick off at Towcester.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Hopefully we were all on in the William Hill St Leger final and our hero Rubys Rascal is worth following in the TV Trophy though the jury is out on whether he will stay the 906m. Ribble Atom retains her form pretty well and we mustn't discount our dour stayer who's stamina is certainly not in question.
RUBYS RASCAL - 5 pts win ante post - TV Trophy - Towcester - starts Saturday
RIBBLE ATOM - 2 pts ew ante post - TV Trophy - Towcester - starts Saturday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
RUBYS RASCAL - 5 pts win - William Hill St Leger - Perry Barr - WON 3/1