Monday 25th February 2013
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The build up to the season's big races really only starts now with many of the country's leading trainers beginning to take the wraps off their stars. The open race calendar for four and six bend runners has mainly been restricted to one off open races so far in 2013 caused partly by the loss of Sky meetings for the first three months of the year. Looking at the class of greyhounds that are now running or coming back from rests one thing is certain the top end of our sport should be in for an exciting rest of the season as I believe the quality is as good as ever. The Juvenile is now only just over three weeks away and this is the first big race over four bends covered by the new SIS produced shows covered live on Sky and in the betting shop. Barrie Draper's Farloe Warhawk and Ballymac Eske are leading candidates for this event and the Greyhound Derby itself and both of these will set the standard for all to beat. We have the chance to put forward Glanmire Lad but I have indicated that he won't take up an invite as he has yet to race further than 400m and I think that a tough 480m would be a massive ask of him at this stage of his career. Our fella had his first trial back on Tuesday at Romford since slightly rupturing a tendon after winning at Romford in December and clocked a stunning 13.56. He will trial again on Tuesday over 400m and long term will target the Golden Sprint in April, we may then go down the same successful route we took last year with Blonde Snapper and go straight to Wimbledon for the William Hill Greyhound Derby.
Our open race team has been further boosted this week with Ayamzaman back with a decent 13.64 trial at Romford and Airforce Diva went well with a 24.26 trial over 400m while Blonde Reagan blew the cobwebs away at Hove on Thursday clocking 30.17 over 500m. Jazz Apollo and Ballintine Molly will also be back this week with trials although the debut for exciting hurdler Baran Bugati will have to wait a week as the race at Coventry last night failed to fill but he did record a fine 29.79 trial over the sticks before racing.
We have had some mixed results in opens this week on what has been a bitterly cold end to February. On Thursday Bridge Ruth was a touch unlucky when looking for a hat trick at Hove but later in form Bridge Bandit landed a five timer in a fine 29.87 showing how versatile he is.
Sidaz Dippy was awesome when getting off the mark at Romford on Friday winning a 575 Maiden by over 6 lengths. What was pleasing was her time of 35.38 which compared very well with other times on the night. Ballymoney Chris and Risky Fred both ran well when third in their respective 400m races. In a hot 575m Planning was desperate when tangling with a moving off trap 3 just as he was about to take a race winning lead at the first bend, had he got round I'm sure he would have put his field to the sword. Ayamzabeauty ran well when leading a 750m Maiden for a long way but just ran out of steam in the end finishing third.
At Monmore all four of our puppies were having their final trial stakes for the forthcoming Ladbrokes Puppy Derby. Carkie Babe put in a good run when third but I Am Titanium looks out of his depth at this stage of his career. Garryglass Rodge will need some draws next to the fence to do well as he caused problems for himself and the runners on his inside when he turned a sharp left from trap 4, he eventually finished a well beaten last but improvement will come. Fairest Royal was pitched into an incredibly warm puppy division and looked good as she smashed out the traps but was just beaten for early pace and was crowded back to the field, in the end she plugged on gamely to finish 4th just over 3 lengths away and looks a lovely staying prospect for the future. We had more success in other races with Jazz Tilly awesome beating a good field by over 4 lengths in a fine 37.88 and Lil Risky returned to his favourite track and trip with a hard fought victory over 416m in 24.96.
A great card at Coventry on Sunday but despite plenty of places no winners for our team. Carkie Max ran well when eaten only 1/2 length in 29.38 while Ard To Beat (3rd), Benkaat Blue (3rd), Mallogs Holly (3rd) and Castlebride Dan (4th) all looked dangerous at some point in their races.
On Wednesday both Risky Lass and Toosey Jensen were close up thirds and Castlegale Hawk followed up her debut win with a good performance taking an A2 in 28.26 (+20).
On Saturday some new pups on show, Gunite Meg and Ministry Madam were both third while Ministry Lady scored on debut in a modest 29.48 calc. In top grade races Darian Creek was an unlucky third and Mountjoy Eagle was another to follow up last week's win when he took a good A1 right on the line in a good 28.25 calc, Risky Blue was second in an A3.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Ballymoney Chris and Castlegale Hawk do battle at Romford tonight in the Coral On TV Maiden 400m heats. For the rest of the week just one off opens possibly at Hove Thursday, Romford Friday and Coventry on Sunday.
WEBSITE RECOMMENDED BETS
Sidaz Dippy obliged for us at Romford on Friday though the price was spoiled by a non runner. Planning looks likely to step up to a full six bend trip and we could target Coventry on Sunday where I think he will be well suited and given the fact the the bookmakers there are very competitive he might be a bankable price.
PLANNING - 4 pts win - Coventry - Sunday
ADVISED LAST WEEK
SIDAZ DIPPY - 3 pts win - Romford - Friday - WON 4/5