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Good news in our sport is a rarity these days so the celebration when Romford’s newly refurbished grandstand and track are finished with be one of the highlights of the year. Yes the place is like a building site at the moment and it’s hard to imagine we are only a month away from the grand opening but you can sense the buzz around the place and I’m positive the crowds will flock back to the track on Friday and Saturday nights. On the track it’s going to be interesting this week running from the opposite sides but I don’t envisage any real form changes. This Friday sees an excellent 16 race card with the Champion Stakes starting in just over a week. Aayamza Express, particularly faces a stern test after winning her Maiden Stayers final last Friday by over 11 lengths in a superb 34.85, a heavy downpour starting a race or two before certainly speeded the surface up but it was still a great run. No doubt the quick track helped Quantum Leap in the last race who beat our Chubbys Caviar by over 7 lengths in a flying 34.62 which I was certainly a bit gutted about after the long standing track record jointly held by the legend Adageo Bob will now be erased from the history books as that was the last ever 575m open race before the changes this week.
Antigua Fire goes into his first Category 1 final for our kennel on Saturday at Monmore in what looks like an ultra competitive Summer Stayers final, yes the 630m is a touch on the sharp side but if he did manage to secure a clear run he would take some stopping!
On Saturday in the semi finals both Antigua Fire and Brigadier Bullet came from off the pace to try and qualify behind Sheldan in a decent 37.64 with Brigadier Bullet just missing out in third. Antigua Vows also just missed out in third and Bumblebee Bullet was eliminated as well and a a step up in trip for her is much needed.
After a disappointing run of results in June/July I really feel our dogs are starting to pick up overall and we were a touch unlucky not to have a few more winners last week though it was good to see Antigua Rum, our only entry in the Puppy Classic, win at Nottingham on Monday in a good 29.83. Though I think we face an impossible task to bridge the gap between ourselves and Patrick Janssens at the top of the Trainer of the Year standings I certainly feel we could win another Category 1 competition at least before the season ends.
Trying to find marathon races for Aayamza Breeze isn’t easy but we took her to Yarmouth on Thursday and the two dog race it appeared on paper materialised when she turned her form with round with Dorando winner Micks Little Gem by giving her a start and a beating storming ahead at the last bend to win comfortably in a fast 53.11 just a length or so off the track record.
At Romford on Friday we had a nice winner with Aayamza Express taking the Maiden Stayers final by over 11 lengths in a flying 34.85. Both Chubbys Caviar and Saleen Ash ran well when second.
As said at Monmore on Saturday no winners bit Antigua Fire qualified for the Category 1 Summer Stayers final.
Just a couple of runners in opens on Sunday over 692m where both No Can Boogie and Calco Cool ran well enough.
On Monday Longacres Mikey got off the mark running well in an A8 to win by a length in a good 28.24. On Tuesday morning Swift Lisetta, Potman and Coasthopper Vic were all second with Jazz Jake taking advantage of crowding at the first bend to win by 5 lengths in 28.55.
On Thursday Adageo Joma and Nothing But Love were both second and on Friday Bobs Boy ran well to pick up youngster Playbook to win by 1 1/4 lengths in 28.39, Bolshy Bullet also won an an A7 well by 5 lengths in 28.28.
Just three runners on Saturday and two winners with pup Jesses Sister
scoring by over 5 lengths in a very good 28.05. Ice Cool Ellis ran on strong to take an A10 in 28.66.
On Sunday we had plenty in the Kennel Sweepstakes but only Busters Bullet qualified in the 550m final when beaten a head and in the 460m there was a good win for Towstar Billy by 3 1/2 lengths in 27.83. In an A4 Deans Hail Mary held off kennelmate Towstar Zelda by a short head in 27.93.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACING - AAYAMZA EXPRESS
GRADED - JESSES SISTER
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
On Friday a decent 16 race card at Romford sees plenty of runners for the kennel.
Saturday at Monmore features the two big finals in the Ladbrokes Gold Cup and Summer Stayers with Antigua Fire going for glory in the 630m event.
There will hopefully be opens at Henlow Sunday supporting the kennel sweepstakes finals and on Monday Antigua Rum goes in the Puppy Classic semi finals.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Antigua Fire recommended at 7/1 ante post will have to work hard to win the Summer Stayers at Monmore but it’s certainly not impossible.
Hopefully on Friday at Romford we should get some clues to the Champion Stakes that starts the following week
ADVISED LAST WEEK
ANTIGUA FIRE - 2.5 pts each way ante post 7/1 - Ladbrokes Summer Stayers - Monmore - final Saturday