Monday 11th March 2013
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Garryglass Rodge bids to reach the prestigious Ladbrokes Monmore Puppy Derby final this afternoon and there will be a lot of greyhound fans going out of their way to watch the semi-final shown on the Bags service mainly due to the fact that the dog of the moment Golden Wonder runs from an akward trap 5 slot. Both Garryglass Rodge and Golden Wonder have only one thing on their minds as the traps open and that's to get to the rails as quickly as possible so it will be interesting how both cope. Garryglass Rodge can, with a good break, clear trap 1 Remember Scottie but Golden Wonder will do well to clear fast starting Fermoy Henry and when he does get to the rails he will do well to pass Garryglass Rodge on the inside.
The rest of the Monmore card today is an all open affair and our kennel has a strong representation in the Category 2 Ladbrokes Spring Festival Stayers with Planning, Darian Chief and Jazz Tilly all in heat 3 while Blonde Reagan is on a recovery mission after being knocked out of the heats of the Queen Mother Memorial Trophy at Sheffield on Tuesday. Benkaat Blue also returns to Monmore in the heats of the Ladbrokes Spring Festival Dogs 480m.
The open race scene is warming up now not just with the races at Monmore but a week Tuesday sees the first SIS produced Sky show featuring a very good Racing Post Juvenile and Ladbrokes Springbok Final. We hope to have 3 or 4 runners in the supporting races though I would like to see our team in slightly better form as overall it has been a disappointing week. Ayamzaman was an exception with a good win at Romford in a calculated 23.89 which bodes well for the Golden Sprint that starts in less than a month. Glanmire Lad starts his build up to this event and will have his first race of the year at Romford on Friday. Airforce Diva pleased me with a solid second at Hove on Thursday and hopefully she can build on that while Castlebride Dan was again impressive at Coventry on Saturday morning.
Coventry still sets the standard for open racing both in terms of prize money and a stunningly good surface and gallop for top class dogs to run on. The experimental Saturday morning cards may have come to an end and may not quite capture the greyhound fans' imagination with very few bums on seats at the track itself but with the brilliant pictures shown on the live streaming you can see why as a nation we are fast becoming armchair viewers. I'm sure the bigger bookmakers get decent turnover when these high quality cards are on but as I have said before the majority of the turnover goes offshore and therefore greyhound racing doesn't benefit. This has to be something the sport needs to talk to the leading bookmakers about or all it will do is force the closure of more tracks.
We are only a couple of weeks away from the Ladbrokes Trainers Championship and Charlie Lister's team seem to be firing on all cylinders and will be tough to beat at Yarmou. I've decided to leave my options open on our team selection apart from Lil Risky who will be our sprinter and Bridge Ruth who will run in the bitch's race. We have to put or team in on the 21st and I will pick the four and six bend team on current form.
On Tuesday we were faced with an akward situation when arriving at Romford for trials. Kevin and Helen were just about to unload the dogs that were having trials when Ballintine Molly appeared to be unwell. Thankfully the vet was on hand very quickly and it was obvious she had suffered a stroke. I've no doubt but for the quick reaction of Kevin and Helen and the vet Julio we would have lost her and I would like to personally thank them for what they all did. Molly is back at the kennels and seems happy enough and is making a good recovery though I would say that her race career has probably come to an end.
Our markwallisgreyhounds 'Racing Club' greyhounds seem to have seconditis at the moment but I was pleased with I Am Titanium's run at Romford on Friday. It's early days yet but I would like our Club to have a runner in the £150,000 William Hill Derby and I am currently in discussions with my contacts in Ireland with a view to buying or even possibly leasing a serious Derby prospect for the Racing Club. If you would like to have a part in our exciting venture then get in touch. To join our Racing Club it costs a one off payment of £500 and £30 per month which entitles you to a share in all our club greyhounds. This is terrific value and is ideal for anyone that wants to dip their toes into greyhound ownership.
Our week didn't get off to the best start when Ayamzaman completely missed his break when third in the heats of the Coral On TV Standard Trophy and on Tuesday our trip to Sheffield on Tuesday proved fruitless with Blonde Reagan eliminated from the Queen Mother Memorial Trophy heats.
At Hove on Thursday Bridge Bandit ran well when beaten 1 1/4 lengths by the useful Slippery Patch in 30.02 and Airforce Diva in her first race of the year looked lively but was beaten 2 1/2 lengths by Droopys Danneel who got the run of the race.
At Romford on Friday Ayamzaman won well in 23.89 with Risky Fred back in 4th. I Am Titanium ran well when runner up in a good puppy race while both Lil Risky and Darian Chief had troubled runs when failing to follow up last weeks victories.
On Saturday morning a high class open race card at Coventry brought only one victory when Castlebride Dan showed why he is the track champion winning in a fine 29.1. Hometown Honey (2nd), Carkie Max (3rd), Baran Bugatti (2nd), Sidaz Dippy (2nd) and Carkei Babe (2nd) all had their moments while Mallogs Holly seems none the worse for hell fall when challenging for the lead in the marathon.
Toosey Faye won coming from behind on Wednesday in 28.92 while both Hillcross Miami and Ollie Blue were second.
On Saturday the going was an incredible 300 slow in blizzard like conditions and our four runners were nowhere to be seen with Swift Freeze closest when a well beaten third.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Monmore Festival action today with plenty of runners and Baran Bugatti takes his chance at Romford tonight in the heats of the Coral On TV Hurdle Trophy.
Open race action to be pencilled in for the rest of the week with hopefully the Ladbrokes Spring Festival being the highlight at Monmore on Friday afternoon.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Garryglass Rodge is still in the Monmore Puppy Derby for our followers and we were a touch unlucky with our selection Airforce Diva on Thursday. The Ladbrokes Spring Festival Stayers at Monmore sees us with four runners and at the prices I see no reason why Jazz Tilly, who has taken to the venue really well, can't win this title which we have had success in on previous years with the likes of Corrig Vieri.
JAZZ TILLY - 2 pts e.w ante-post - Ladbrokes Spring Festival Stayers - Monmore - starts today
ADVISED LAST WEEK
GARRYGLASS RODGE - 1 pt e.w ante-post 25/1 - Ladbrokes Puppy Derby - Monmore - continues today
AIRFORCE DIVA - 2 pts win - Hove - Thursday - lost