Monday 5th November 2012
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READ MARK'S BLOG OF THE EXCITING
DERBY BUILD UP CULMINATING IN BLONDE SNAPPER'S FANTASTIC DERBY FINAL WIN
Blonde Reagan and Blonde Fletch got our William Hill St Leger campaign off to a good start on Saturday when winning their respective heats in good style. On a cold night at Wimbledon, with plenty of fireworks going off in the area making it uncomfortable but manageable, most of the
leading contenders qualified safely with Paul Donovan's Droopys Robles producing a stunning effort when beating ante-post favourite Ballyard Buddy by 6 1/4 lengths in a flying 41.53 just half a length outside the clock. Blonde Reagan took the next heat in fine style when blasting out the traps and leading all the way took his heat by 7 lengths. It was somewhat strange however that his winning time was only 42.30 which had many people baffled including myself but times are irrelevant at this stage. I must admit that four weeks ago I couldn't see Blonde Fletch making the event after having a superficial tendon removed but in his heat he looked back to his old self as he blasted to a flying 16.21 sectional and strode effortlessly to a 6 length lead down the back straight. Although tiring in the closing stages he still won by 1 1/2 lengths in 42.17 and is sure to come on for the run, rule the veteran out at your peril.
It was amazing to see such a big crowd in attendance at Wimbledon on Saturday and I have no doubt that if Pascal Taggart's vision of a new Wimbledon comes off then regular crowds of 3,000 + are a certainty. Perhaps all he needs to do is come over and line some palms first and
guarantee a million or so for other facilities in the area under the 106 sweetener and his plans will be looked upon a lot more favourably. This obviously brings us on to the subject of Walthamstow and, as expected from a conservative, Boris Johnson went against his word in
his recent election campaign and did not call in the application for development on the Stadium. Talk of this man being a future leader of our country should have us worried, very worried! What an albino buffoon this man is and I wouldn't want him in charge of a chimps tea party let alone our country. Anyway back to Walthamstow and as I said before we all owe SOS and Rick Holloway a debt of gratitude for their unrelenting campaign to save the Stow. It seems like the last throw of the dice will be to take this to a judicial review which looks likely.
They are not finished yet and next Saturday there will be a rally outside the Stadium starting at 1 pm. Rick tells me that this is not just about Walthamstow but a message will be sent out to all developers who are thinking of taking more of our greyhound stadia so he is calling for as many owners and supporters to attend as possible. Of course it's difficult for trainers and their staff to attend at this time of day as Saturday is a busy race day with all tracks having meetings that night and most are working with the minimal amount of staff, the second round of the St Leger at Wimbledon also continues with many off the top trainers involved so perhaps ALL trainers could see if they can send down a few owners to support Rick and SOS, they deserve this from us.
I have to say thank you to Racing Post's Richard Birch who called me earlier in the week to say his Saturday feature 'Greyhound Greats' was about myself. I did ask him not to do this because, believe it or not, I am quite modest and I feel I haven't justified this worthy title just
yet. However I will cherish what he wrote and hope I can live up to his expectations over the next few years. Of course it goes without saying I have to thank Sarah, Linda and all my staff past and present for getting the chance to be called a 'Greyhound Great'.
Our membership to our new 'Racing Club' is growing and we are only about three weeks away from our first club Greyhound I Am Titanium having his first race. Expectations are building as his opening four bend solo at Yarmouth produced a stunning 28.57 calc with a superb 5.40
split. For an April 11 whelp this is very promising and I really think we have a fine prospect on our hands. Join now if you want a share of this fella and we are looking at a similar prospect for our second purchase. This is greyhound ownership at an affordable price at its best.
A tough night at Nottingham on Monday where Bridge Honcho suffered a hefty defeat against the formidable Ballymac Eske who broke the track record he equalled lat week. Darian Star scraped through to the 480m Maiden final when third in her heat and both Springdale Hawk and Jazz Tilly were second in their respective races.
Lil Risky, looking short of a run, did well to qualify for the final of the Fengate Collar at Peterborough when second in his heat and a busy day on Thursday saw runners again at Henlow and Hove.
At Henlow we came close with Benkaat Blue (3rd), Billy Mac (2nd) and Shambo Shine (2nd) but the best performance of the night came from Swift Freeze who beat some decent rivals over 550m by 3 lengths in 33.86 (-15), over at Hove Bridge Ruth had to work hard to score in a good 515m and showed real guts to hold on by a hd in 29.92 (-20) and Aero Joker ran well when taking another division of the 515m also by a hd in 30.08 (-20).
On Friday just four runners at Romford with Star One Day scoring at the 3rd time of asking in 24.61.
On Saturday as said good wins for Blonde Reagan and Blonde Fletch in the William Hill St Leger first round heats and Ballintine Molly also joined them when third in her heat. An horrendous draw in trap 5 for Lil Risky in the Fengate Collar final and despite his best efforts he couldn't get to the rails with a couple of dubious rail seeds inside him and was badly crowded at the first bend putting him out the race eventually finishing 5th.
On Sunday at Coventry Swift Lucozade didn't get much of a run when 4th in the Puppy Final and Jazz Apollo was involved in a no race when the hare broke own though we didn't leave empty handed as Planning returned fom a spell on the sidelines to win over 485m by 3 lengths in 29.65
Just five runners on Saturday and an overdue win for Roberts Dancer in 29.23 calc and both Swift Cidona (3rd) and Bit View Emma (2nd) ran well.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
WHAT'S ON NEXT WEEK
Darian Star runs in the bookmakers 480m Maiden final tonight at Nottingham with both Glanmire Lad and Darian Chief.
At Romford Ayamzaman takes on some useful rivals in the heats of the Coral On TV Standard.
Back to Hove and Henlow on Thursday and Romford on Friday and on Saturday the William Hill St Leger 2nd Round takes place at Wimbledon.
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Blonde Reagan made a good start to his St Leger campaign but faces a tough 2nd round heat and we will keep all our interest in him this week.
ADVISED LAST WEEK
BLONDE REAGAN - 2 pts e.w ante-post 10/1 - William Hill St Leger - Wimbledon - continues Saturday
ADAGEO BRAE - 1 pt e.w ante-post 100/1 - William Hill St Leger - Wimbledon - lost