Monday 11th June 2012
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READ MARK'S BLOG OF THE EXCITING
DERBY BUILD UP CULMINATING IN BLONDE SNAPPER'S FANTASTIC DERBY FINAL WIN
Very much a case of 'after the Lord Mayor's show' this week with a number of our kennel stars finding ways of getting beat, some unlucky it might be said. Last Monday two odds on shots bit the dust - at Nottingham Lil Risky went down a short head in a great race with Proud Patsy and at Romford Aero Joker's great run of wins ended when outgunned by Bridge Jane. On Thursday Jazz Apollo ran a great race in the Monmore Stud Book Trophy final but in the end had to settle for second place behind Blue Artisan and at Hove all seemed well when Blonde Fletch blasted clear in his semi-final of the Coral Regency but the defending champ blew up in the closing stages and was passed in the final strides by the strong running Capoley Ash and Fabulous Shanty to lose out for a place in Tuesday's final. Our luck seemed out at Oxford as well when in heat 2 of the Ladbrokes Pall Mall Castlebride Dan running from trap 6 did an immediate left turn to crash into our own Ayamzaman ending his chance of glory and in the end did well to qualify himself in third place. Despite many of our dogs running well at Romford on Friday both the well fancied Aero Prince and, in the Doug Tyler Summer Cup final, Aero Joker had to settle for minor honours. Overall the week was disappointing but all seem to have come off safe and sound so we will dust ourselves down and see if we can get back on the winners' trail as soon as possible.
No decision has been made yet on whether our Greyhound Derby winner Blonde Snapper is to be retired or whether he will go to Sunderland to defend his William Hill Classic title at the end of the month. His owner Mark Currell is still rightly savouring the moment and will make a decision at the end of the week. 'Snapper' has had a well earned couple of weeks off but is in great heart and was full of himself when Julie Collier came down to the kennels with the Sky cameras on Friday to do an interview with me for the Sky show at Hove tomorrow. Whatever Mark's decision I will back him 100% and if he is to race again I'm pleased to say 'Snapper' has come out of the Derby in great shape and his problematic wrist has suffered no reaction from his gruelling campaign.
With the football European Championship now started it was very noticeable that the crowds at the tracks were down this weekend and it will cause a real headache for promoters over the next month. The greyhound calendar is set for a busy schedule with a number of exciting events and competitions getting underway but it will be tough competing with the football. England's chances are slim to say the least and an early exit looks likely which will probably be a blessing in disguise for the greyhound world. At the kennels we have embraced the Euro's with myself, Sid, Gary, Pete, Kev and my son Daniel all doing a team on the Sun Dream Team with a kennel sweep stake to the one scoring the most points. There most certainly will be plenty of banter at the kennel as the Euros unfold with us all thinking we are experts!
Our kennel is set to be strengthened up over the next few weeks with a few new exciting prospects that have been purchased recently. Bridge Honcho (formerly Subway Gerry) has raced in some high class races in Ireland and will be having his first qualifying trial this week for owner Peter Bridges. As said on RPGTV last Friday, Simon Wooder has purchased rising star Cuil Condor for his syndicate of Guy Williams, Marcus Reader and Ian St Pier. Cuil Condor recorded a superb 28.36 last Wednesday at Shelbourne Park and will be a serious prospect in all the major puppy races later this summer. Glanmire Lad advertised on our For Sale page has been snapped up by Dick and Ann Barfoot and this fast December 10 whelp looks a serious Romford Puppy Cup contender later this year. Dan Daley of the 'Benkaat' fame has also bought a lovely prospect called Swift Toyota (will be renamed) and this young December 10 prospect could be a real nice pup to watch out for in a few months' time. These new intakes should strengthen our kennel in a few weeks' time and enhance our Trainers Championship chances where we already hold a big lead. With some major gambles earlier in the year on both Kelly Findlay and Paul Young looking in trouble we seem to be the bookies' friends at the moment!
At last it seems the GTA have finally got round to sorting out the election for the new Chairperson job that will be vacated by Norah McEllistrim and all Professional Trainers will soon be sent a voting card once any candidates put themselves forward for the position, although at this stage it's looking likely that only Rick Holloway has stated his intentions of doing so. I would go as far as to say I don't think anyone else need apply and the sooner we get Rick into this important job the better. He most certainly will at last give our representation some much needed strength and will fight our cause in a proper and beneficial way.
A brief look at last week where Ayamzabeauty and Darian Sky both ran well at Nottingham last Monday but were eliminated from the Puppy Oaks and both Lil Risky and Risky Storm were beaten favourites in supporting races while at Romford Aero Joker was a well beaten second in the Doug Tyler Summer Cup at Romford over 575m.
At Hove on Thursday Blonde Fletch just missed out on a place in the final of the Coral Regency when third in his semi-final behind Capoley Ash and in supporting races Rockburst Lenny again ran well when just beaten in a 515m Standard. Over at Monmore we had a number of trials before racing with the Ladbrokes Summer Stayers in mind that starts today, Dixies Air impressing most with a 28.59 effort on a slow track. Mountjoy Orion ran well in a ladies 480m race when 4th and Jazz Apollo looked an unlucky runner up in the Monmore Stud Book Trophy final behind Blue Artisan. On a busy but unsuccessful night over at Oxford Castlebride Dan was our only qualifier from the Ladbrokes Pall Mall heats.
On Friday at Romford in the feature race the Doug Tyler Summer Cup Aero Joker again had to play second fiddle to Bridge Jane and there were good runs from Steam Machine (2nd) Kinda Close (3rd) and Mountjoy Eagle (3rd) with only outsider Swift Chef nicking a 400m Maiden with the well fancied kennel mate Aero Prince back in third.
Only runners on Saturday and Wednesdaywhacker dropped down back to four bends just got up to win an A4 in 28.53. Risky Blue was second in an A1 and there were two good wins for youngster Swift Pepper in a smart 28.23 in an A3 and Darian Star scored a debut win in A2 grade in a fast 28.19.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Today seven runners head to Monmore for the Ladbrokes Summer Stayers over 630m and both Jazz Apollo and Dixies Air lead our hopes of landing this Category 1 event last won by us two years ago with Droopys Zach.
At Romford two heats of the Coral on TV Puppy trophy see Darian Marvel and Darian Chief as well as Marlfield Luke competing to get in Friday's final.
Although not represented in the Coral Regency final at Hove on Tuesday we have both Lil Risky and Ayamzagirl in supporting races for us live on Sky.
Castlebride Dan is our sole survivor in the Ladbrokes Pall Mall semi's on Thursday and we will be at Romford on Friday and Coventry on Sunday for the regular opens.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
A few bets went down last week but hopefully our decent price about Castlebride Dan in the Ladbrokes Pall Mall can give us a run for our money. Lil Risky will always give 100% and is always worth a bet in the Sky races and tomorrow night at Hove he will have a good chance. In today's Ladbrokes Summer Stayers at Monmore I like the look of Dixies Air who could be well suited to the track and trip and at 16/1 is worth a decent interest.
DIXIES AIR - 2pts e.w ante-post 16/1 - Ladbrokes Summer Stayers Classic - Monmore - starts today
ADVISED LAST WEEK
BLONDE FLETCH - 2.5 pts e.w ante-post 7/1 - Coral Regency - Hove Thursday - lost
JAZZ APOLLO - 3 pts win 9/2 - Monmore Stud Book Tropy - Thursday - lost
AYAMZAMAN - 2 pts e.w ante-post 8/1 - Ladbrokes Pall Mall - Oxford - Thursday - lost
CASTLEBRIDE DAN - 1.5 pts e.w ante-post 25/1 - Ladbrokes Pall Mall - Oxford - semi's Thureday