Monday 13th April 2009
A mixed bag of results this week with the high points being the win of Eye Eye Pickle on Tuesday's Sky card at Wimbledon and the convincing wins of Mountjoy Ruby, Jogadusc Ace and Eye Onthe Brave in the heats of the Blue Riband on Friday at Hall Green. Indeed Jogadusc Ace has now been promoted to favourite in some books for the £10,000 to the winner final a week Tuesday and with him in such terrific form it looks to have been a shrewd buy for his new owners. Kindred Sparky is our sole survivor in Romfords Golden Sprint but will give it his all in a quest to make the £8,000 to the winner final.
With only 2 1/2 weeks left to the start of the Blue Square Greyhound Derby the build up is taking shape and it looks like the Irish challenge, judging by how the Scottish Derby has gone, will have a huge say in the outcome. Cabra Cool, one of five finalists from the emerald isle, was impressive when winning the event for Pat Buckley and I'm sure he will lead a strong team coming over to Wimbledon. We are looking at about 12 entries from the kennel and as much as our shortest priced runner is 100-1 (Kinda Ready) at the moment I am as excited as I have ever been of having a finalist since taking over the reins of the kennel in 2005. Our last finalist in 2001 Greenfield Deal seems a long time a go and is something for us to rectify in the next couple of years!
It was a pleasant surprise to see my ugly mug again spread over a whole page in the Racing Post on Saturday (page 22) when Phil Donaldson penned a well written article on my poker exploits over the last few years. Obviously most people know poker is a real passion of mine and it's great to see some proper mainstream coverage of what has become the fastest growing pass time in the history of leisure and with the advent of the Internet the phenomenon that is poker is still growing despite the recession.
Genesis Sister, an absolutely cracking race bitch for the last couple of years or so, has come into season and has been retired. Gavin Cheeseman's fawn daughter of Rapid Journey - Up In Lights has won an incredible 35 of her 112 races and a nice sofa awaits her in the near future.
No luck on Monday at Romford in the heats of the Coral TV Stayers with Directors Chair on his return to six bends a bit unlucky with the going heavily favouring the outside when 3rd. At Wimbledon on Tuesday in the supporting races featuring the Grand National final Goldies Destiny ran respectably in the puppy race and Eye Eye Eye Pickle took advantage of a great draw to advertise his Derby claims when taking the 460m in 28.09 (-15).
At Harlow on Wednesday Bomber Bailey scored back to back hurdle wins taking the top division by over 5 lengths in 26.79 (-20).
On Romford's afternoon meeting on Good Friday the heats of the Golden Sprint saw Goldcrest Lord crash out after stumbling from the traps and a missed break from Drectors Fire also saw him suffer the same fate but Kindred Sparky ran well to finish 3rd to qualify for the semi's. Directors Chair got no sort of run with Raving Black on his inside when last in the top 575m Stayers.
At Hall Green on the same night the heats of the Blue Riband got off to a great start when Mountjoy Ruby took heat 1 by 1 3/4 lengths in 28.47. In the next heat Jogadusc Ace was most impressive when beating ante-post favourite Outandgoodnight by 3/4 length in a fine 28.21 with Centaur Decree running well but back in 5th. Kengyelfuto Snow (unlucky in running) and Roswell Startrek were both eliminated but Eye Onthe Brave got us back on track with an easy win in 28.42 with Goldcrest King finding trouble but qualifying in 3rd.
On Sunday at Coventry the night got off to a bad start when Kinda Free sadly broke her hock in the 680m but hopefully it's not too serious. Missed A Train (2nd), Droopys Zach (3rd), Eye Onthe Force (4th) and Kinda Easy (3rd) all came close but star of the night was Eye Onthe Pulse recording his first win since going lame in the All England Cup Final back in November scoring by 3/4 length in 29.77.
Out of luck on Wednesday with a couple of runners and on Saturday there were good wins from Risky Fabio upped two grades by 2 1/4 lengths in 26.53 (-50) and Bell Tornado took an ideal opportunity in top grade when storming to a 10 3/4 length victory in a fast 38.55 (-90).
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACING - JOGADUSC ACE
GRADED RACING - RISKY FABIO
WHAT'S ON THIS WEEK
Semi-final time at Hall Green in the Blue Riband with Jogadusc Ace, Mountjoy Ruby, Eye Onthe Brave and Goldcrest King battling for a place in the final. Opens at Harlow on Wednesday and the Golden Sprint Semi's on Friday at Romford with Kindred Sparky flying the flag.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Our two ante-post bets for the Blue Riband and the Golden Sprint bit the dust and looking at this week I'm struggling to see where we can recoup losses though going back to the Blue Riband I thought Goldcrest King who found all the trouble going in his heat looks to have been drawn with a decent chance of making the final and at 12/1 makes strong appeal.
GOLDCREST KING - 2 pts e.w ante-post 12/1 - Blue Riband - Hall Green - Tuesday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
KENGYELFUTO SNOW - 2pts e.w ante-post - Blue Riband - Hall Green - lost
DIRECTORS FIRE - 1pt e.w ante-post - Golden Sprint - Romford - lost