Monday 1st November 2010
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Plenty of open race competitions starting and finishing last week most notably the William Hill St Leger Final at Wimbledon last Tuesday. Sadly the night was marred by the serious injury to Rayvin Giovanni, one of the joint favourites for next year's Greyhound Derby, in a 480m supporting race in which our Derby hero Kinda Ready finished 2nd. The injury to Seamus Cahill's star happened at the same bend that saw our own Eye Onthe Storm badly injured earlier in the year and put a real dampener on the night's proceedings. Droopys Bradley trained by Paul Donavan, his first Category 1 success, was awesome in the St Leger final winning comfortably in a track record time to show the ups and downs of the sport. Thankfully Rayvin Giovanni is on the mend and though his career is over like Eye Onthe Storm's both will enjoy happy retirements.
The William Hill Festival of racing began at Newcastle on Saturday and both Kinda Ready and Blonde Fletch qualified for next week's semi-finals of the All England Cup when second respectively in their heats. Most impressive in the first round was the performance of Munster Champ winning by over 7 lengths in a flying 28.34. Munster Champ is owned jointly by Ian Lavery, Josh Barnfather and my mother in law Linda Jones who also own recent Champion Stakes finalist and litter brother All That Noise. The litter a Feb 08 out of Droopys Vieri x Droopys Nectar bred by Dennis Wilson also contains our Derby finalist Adageo. The Puppy Derby also began and with other supporting events beginning next Saturday the Finals night a week Wednesday live on Sky should be a night to savour.
Although only a Category 2 event the Henlow Silver Salva Trophy over 550m has assembled a top class field and I was delighted with most of the performances of our 7 strong team last Thursday. Dalcash Scolari a dog blessed with pace to burn has suffered with some poor draws and bad luck for most of the year since his awesome display on Trainers Championship night at Doncaster back in March but won very well in the opening heat in 33.51 and looks likely to improve for the run. Both Bourne Masons and All That Noise ran well when runners up in their heats. Eye Onthe Tempo and Droopys Elbow got in a tangle and were eliminated but the night finished well with victories for Goldies Destiny (33.50) and Directors Spur (33.44) and we can look forward to Thursday's semi-finals with most of ours drawn with a chance to make the following week's final.
Thanks to the popular Jonathan Hobbs for his 'Spotlight On' in our Guest Column this week which like Richard Birch gives an excellent read for our website visitors and I'm looking forward to the coming weeks where I will be getting all the greyhound writers as well as the Sky presenters and production team's views.
Aero Merlin led all the way when winning his heat of the Coral On TV Maiden Standard in 24.34 (+10) with Gottabe Kinda back in 3rd. The victory for Aero Merlin was the kennel's 200th open race win of a topsy turvey year.
On Tuesday the William Hill St Leger final at Wimbledon was the feature race of the night and in supporting races Blonde Fletch produced a power packed finish to grab the honours in a 480m in 29.12. Risky Wand saw the back end of Jimmie Lollie again in a sprint and as said in a forgettable race Kinda Ready was second in another 480m Standard and only some serious hurdling skills saved him from a disaster.
On the same night at Hall Green the heats of the Midland Oaks proved unsuccessful with Aldataro Lass 4th. Kinda Razzle is proving frustrating and was last in a heat in which Catunda Mae ran well but just missed out for a place in the final when 3rd.
Henlow as said produced three winners on Thursday while on Friday at Romford Aero Merlin couldn't get competitive after a slow start in the Coral On TV Maiden final. Goldcrest Lord returning from almost a year off the track since serious injury produced a pleasing effort when 3rd in a hot sprint open and if he can keep sound will be a welcome addition to our open race team. Bomber Barkley was a touch unlucky when 5th in a 400m Standard.
On Saturday we travelled to Newcastle and Hall Green. In the heats of the All England Cup at Newcastle Kinda Ready broke well but was badly crowded at the first bend, showing true pace to get back in the race he was again checked back through the field at the 3rd bend and performed well to finish 2nd after a storming finish beaten just over 2 lengths in 28.84. Blonde Fletch also did well to grab 2nd place in his heat after trouble at the first bend eventually beaten 4 lengths in 28.64. At Hall Green in supporting races to the Midland Oaks Directors Wit could only finish 2nd when odds on after making a complete hash of the start. Stormbeam making his debut in a Puppy 480m was 4th beaten only 6 lengths after giving away nearly 5 of those out of the boxes and should improve over the next few races to be a decent sort. Rockburst Eva (3rd) and Paradise Riva (2nd) both ran well in their respective Maidens, Join The Maids ran poorly in the Marathon and needs therapy (lol) but Destroy The Camp made sure we didn't come away empty handed when landing the 480m Standard in fine style showing great middle pace to lead at the 3rd bend going on to score by over 3 lengths in 28.54 on a slowish track. Destroy The Camp, still very much underrated, has been a revelation this year since his debut A7defeat at Harlow back in April.
Only four runners on last Monday's Bags card with Kinda Breezy running well when 4th on her debut and is one to watch out for in the near future.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACE - DESTROY THE CAMP
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Fireworks at night time will have an effect on our race planning this week with only trips to Yarmouth for graded racing tonight and Saturday while we are only fulfilling our competition commitments with Henlow's Silver Salva Trophy semi-finals on Thursday and Newcastle's All England Cup semi-finals on Saturday.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
An excellent week for followers with Blonde Fletch winning at Wimbledon at generous odds of 9/2. Our ante-post portfolio looks pretty as well with Dalcash Scolari starting the Henlow Silver Salva Trophy well. Sadly only a couple of bookmakers priced the event up and I shouldn't think too many people were on at the 12/1 on offer. Kinda Ready was a huge price at 25/1 for the All England Cup and if he can get through his semi-final next Saturday he will be hard to keep out of the frame.
For a bet this week I like the draw for Dalcah Scolari on Thursday and if odds against I would recommend a wager on him as he is likely to improve on last week's win in the heats.
DALCASH SCOLARI - 3 pts win - Henlow - Thursday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
BLONDE FLETCH - 2 pts win - Wimbledon - Tuesday - WON 9/2
DALCASH SCOLARI - 1 pt e.w ante-post 12/1 - Henlow Silver Salva Trophy - continues Thursday
KINDA READY - 1 pt e.w ante-post 25/1 - All England Cup - Newcastle - continues Saturday