Monday 16th April 2012
JOIN GOBATA NOW
(Opens to a third party website)
L&Q’s plans will be decided by Waltham Forest Councillors at a special public meeting at Waltham Forest Town Hall complex on the evening of 8 May.
We need as many people to attend this vital public meeting as possible.
Blonde Snapper is our sole representative in the Coral Golden Spint Final this coming Friday at Romford after coming second to an inspired Fancy Socks in the semi-finals last Friday. Fancy Socks was easily the fastest of the three semis when beating Blonde Snapper by 2 1/2 lengths in 23.79. The second semi-final was billed as one of hottest 400m ever staged at the Essex track containing four of the heat winners. Both our runners Lil Risky and Mountjoy Osprey faced difficult draws in traps 3 and 5 and Lil Risky was in trouble straight away but all looked well for Mountjoy Osprey who broke in his best style and was in a great position going into the first bend but trap 2 Drumcove Lad, who looked ill at ease on the tight track, completely moved off taking 'Osprey' out with him and leaving Slick Sian out in front. To say it was gutting is an understatement and to his credit Mountjoy Osprey did well to finish third with Lil Risky back in the field. The Category 1 final worth £8,000 to the winner still looks an open affair and I see no reason why Blonde Snapper can't win from trap 6 though only his best break will suffice.
Blonde Snapper, all being well, will head for the William Hill Greyhound Derby heats straight after the Golden Sprint final. Our greatest race of the year gets underway either a week Thursday or Friday depending on how many entries Wimbledon receive. The entries close this Wednesday and a bumper trial session will be expected this Wednesday at Plough Lane. As well as Blonde Snapper we will be looking to enter Jazz Apollo, who ran well at Sheffield last Tuesday when a close up 4th in a warm supporting race on Sky. Benkaat Blue who has had a slight toe injury after the Trainers Championship meeting is not 100% fit but will take his chance if he comes off sound when he trials at Wimbledon on Wednesday. Dixies Air was a shade unlucky in the Sittingbourne Easter Standard final last night and will trial at Wimbledon as well. Also Rookery Pedro and possibly Castlebride Dan may well take their chance if going well in trials while the enigmatic Aero Bellagio will be having a crack at the Derby. Bellers Bud, a semi-finalist last year has been plagued by injuries since, looks doubtful as he again sits on the sidelines with another niggling injury. With £50,000 extra in the pot this year generously found by sponsors William Hill our Premier event will certainly provide extra interest and numbers could well exceed the 200 mark with a strong Irish contingent expected.
In other kennel news it was great to see Blonde Fletch back in action after nearly four months off with a fine 13.60 sprint trial at Romford last Tuesday and he will return there tomorrow for a 400m trial. Aero Majestic bounced back with a nice win over 575m on Friday after a short rest and will trial at Peterborough this week for a race on Sky. Swift Freeze has improved out of sight in recent weeks and made it 5 wins from 9 runs when winning his second open on the trot over 575m in a Maiden Stayers and looks a pup worth following in the coming months.
Our industry was given a major boost with news that Coventry has been given the green light by the GBGB and is expected to reopen on May 20th. Harry Findlay is the main figure behind the Stadium's plans to bring a refreshing new look to all aspects of the business plan. These include a possible open race card on Saturday mornings which is interesting and also his plans to cut the tote retention to around 15%, this is quite a radical move and would put all the other GBGB tracks to shame, some of which take a ridiculous 30% out of the punters' pockets. Good luck to them and I really hope they can make it work as Coventry was a track we loved to run our open race dogs at. In 2008 I think we had 96 open race wins there including introducing our Derby and St Leger winners Kinda Ready and Kinda Easy.
Norah McEllistrim has also now said she is stepping down from her GTA position as Chairperson and it will be an interesting few weeks to see what unfolds. I considered the options of whether I might tender for this most important job but after hearing that Rick Holloway intends to put himself forward I would like to back him 100% as I couldn't think of anyone better to represent all our professional trainers. Rick is not just a greyhound fanatic who, along with the Save Our Stow team, has resurrected the hopes of Walthamstow Stadium returning, he is a very good trainer who politically knows how to conduct himself in a proper manner. With the help of a strong committee he will be the man to bring some unity amongst all trainers and raise all the issues that need addressing in the current climate. I know he has the support of most of the leading open race trainers and if we all get behind him he can lead our profession out of some difficult times.
I didn't get a chance to read our Racing Post's open race correspondent Jonathan Kay's recent blog until this week. He mentioned that I was quite 'animated' during my last RPGTV appearance about the lack of promotion in our sport from the GBGB. I certainly agree on some of Jonathan's points but to say that the GBGB are only there to ensure a smoothly run sport I totally disagree with. As written on their website the GBGB states that 'The GBGB is the centre of governance, regulation and welfare as well as the LEAD FOR COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT AND GROWTH OF THE SPORT' if this doesn't mean that they should promote and seek outside sponsorship then they should withdraw this statement from their site, and while we are at it why does the GBGB board of directors not respond publicly to the massive outcry from owners and trainers on current issues that include prize money levels? When we get some proper representation I promise we will not put up with the deafening silence that currently exists.
Not the best of starts to the week with no luck at Romford on Monday in the Coral On TV Maiden 400m heats with both Risky Fred and Marlfield Luke (promising run) only 3rd and on Tuesday at Sheffield Ballintine Molly (2nd) and Jazz Apollo (close up 4th). Kinda True was also 3rd at Hall Green on Wednesday with only the first two qualifying for the Ladbrokes Blue Riband final and it definitely was looking like a bad week when our two runners at Henlow on Thursday where both badly hampered and down the field.
At last a winner on Friday at Romford when Risky Fred got everything right and won the first race well in a fine 24.11 and our luck seemed to have changed when Swift Freeze quickly followed up in a 575m Maiden running well to hold on to win by a length in 35.96. As said above the Golden Sprint semi-finals produced a finalist with Blonde Snapper and in the Dual Distance trophy Carden Twilight qualified for next week's 750m final when second over 575m. Aero Majestic despite a bumpy ride from trap 4 showed his class when winning the last in 35.79.
At Sittingbourne on Sunday our luck deserted us again with Adageo Brae slaughtered in the 480m Puppy heats when last although Blonde Kimber did qualify from her heat when 3rd. In The Easter Bunny Standard Final Dixie Air lost all chance when getting tangled up at the third bend.
Only runners on Saturday with the Yarmouth Kennel Championship heats taking place for the top dogs at the track. In heat 1 Steam Machine ran well to be runner up to Stargate Spark beaten a length in 28.17. In heat 4 Risky Blue scored well winning in 28.21 and was our only other runner to qualify for next Saturday's semis. A nice double in the last two races saw youngsters Ayamzabeauty (28.40) and Darian Sky (28.34) win well and both look very promising for the future.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Important trial sessions at Romford on Tuesday and Wimbledon on Wednesday while at night Swift Reagan and Aero Joker run in supporting Sky races at Hall Green.
The feature race of the week is at Romford on Friday at Romford where Blonde Snapper bids to add the Coral Golden Sprint title to his William Hill Classic win.
On Sunday Blonde Kimber runs in the Sittingbourne Puppy final over 480m with other opens yet to be pencilled in.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Jazz Apollo was a close up 4th but ultimately a loser on Tuesday for us but despite getting beat it was a good move to add Blonde Snapper to our portfolio in the Golden Sprint and we should get a decent run for our money in Friday's final. I think we could have a live chance of landing a Sky double at Hall Green on Wednesday in the shape of Swift Reagan and Aero Joker who both trialled well at the track last week and Blonde Kimber could improve for her first look at Sittingbourne when she goes back for next Sunday's final and this progressive bitch would be worth an interest.
SWIFT REAGAN - 2 pts win - Hall Green - Wednesday
AERO JOKER - 2 pts win - Hall Green - Wednesday
BLONDE KIMBER - 1 pt win - Sittingbourne - Sunday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
BLONDE SNAPPER - 2 pts e.w ante-post 6/1 - Coral Golden Sprint - Romford - final Friday
LIL RISKY - 2 pts e.w ante-post 12/1 - Coral Golden Sprint - Romford - Friday - lost
JAZZ APOLLO - 2 pts win - Sheffield - Tuesday - lost