Monday 9th July 2007
Congratulations to Westmead Lord and his trainer Nick Savva and to his staff for a magnificent win in Saturday's Greyhound Derby Final. I can't believe it was only a couple of months ago that for three weeks running I saw the Derby winner running at Henlow in a puppy competition in which we had Bubbly Magic competing (he actually led him to the second bend in the semi-final). I did say to a few people then that Lord had frightening pace and although he just gets the 480m Saturday night's trapping won him the Derby. Blue Square deserve a big mention as this was without doubt one of the best Derbys for many a year. A huge crowd on a great finals night with some outstanding racing is what can be achieved when sponsors like Blue Square get behind greyhound racing and with the superb Kate Miller at the helm next year can't come quick enough! Hopefully our kennel can unearth some superstars and we can go one better than this year's semi-final placing. Good luck also to Wimbledon Racing Manager Derek Hope in his new job, a man who was a gentleman to deal with when I phoned for entries and trials etc.
I would like to wish John Keefe and our favourite Eye Onthe Veto the best of luck in his quest for glory in the forthcoming Irish Derby as he has left the kennel to join Ian Reilly but will be back with us for a tilt at the major races in September onwards. I would also like to thank all the people who asked after Roswell Bluesky who suffered a serious injury at Harlow last Wednesday. Thankfully he was saved and when fully mended will retire to his owners Martin and Debbie Allen's home as a pet. Our 5 to follow competition was flooded with late entries and with nearly 300 teams involved the weekly updates on the leaderboards should prove popular reading over the next few months - so good luck to everyone.
Tuesday night we sent a good team down to Hove to prepare them for the competitions that are coming up. Go Commando isn't quite firing on all cylinders yet after a series of niggles this year and although 5th in his Sussex Cup trial stake I wouldn't write him off yet. A fine performance from Stride On Babe in the Bitches 515m race catching the top class Jazz Hurricane close home in 30.17 and Matthew Etherington's star looks well suited to this stiff gallop. Raging Jack didn't get the best of runs in another of the Trial Stakes won well by Temple Lad in a good 29.70 eventually finishing 4th but should go better next time as this was his first look at the track. Butterbridge Ali who had trialled the week before ran a solid race only to be beaten 1/2 lgth in 29.99 and he can hopefully step up a bit over the next few weeks to stake his claim for outright honours in this prestigious race. Our last two runners Treacle Rose and Bubbly Magic never got much of a run from their bad draws and tried hard but were soundly beaten. Better news came from Peterborough as Head Kennelhand Peter Vernon took his favouriute Roswell Spaceman (Crash) for the heats of the Seniors Derby and despite not trapping in his best style he showed his customary early pace to race in to an unassailable lead and win in 25.58.
At Harlow on Wednesday we had Eye Onthe Flame in the weekly Monkey Final and despite him finding over 5 lengths on last week's heat run he had to settle for minor honours. Obviously our other runner was Roswell Bluesky who was unfortunately carried off with a serious injury as reported above.
Walthamstow on Thursday was a mixture of graded and open races and our first open runner was Pete Vernon's Marathon Girl who took Division 2 of the Maiden leading at the 4th bend to win in 29.74 (-20). Night Night ran a stormer in her six bend debut when an unlucky 2nd in the Novice Stayers beaten only 2 1/2 lengths in a calc 40.07. Killer Keane also ran well when second in the Div 2 of the standard behind Cobra Striking who recorded 28.76 calc. Daisyfield Matti just can't seem to get that win under his belt and another brave effort saw him get beat the shortest margin in a calc 29.13. Coolanga Flyer continued our run of seconds when just beaten in Div 1 of the Stayers.
At Romford on Friday we sent three runners and yes you guessed it they all finished second. Snappy Girl and January Tiger were our two representatives on Derby final night at Wimbledon and what a race Snappy Girl was in for the Dorando Marathon - a quality line up! From a bad draw in 4 it was going to be hard right from the off but she stuck to her task and finished 4th. January Tiger has seen it all before but even he could not predict a rough race but like Snappy he found himself in trouble at the first bend and again he plugged on to not be beaten too far.
A quiet week for winners on the graded front drawing a blank on Monday, Tuesday and Saturday but Thursday's runners were given more of a chance and it was nice to see the return to form of both Special Deal (29.06 calc) and a good run from Shelbourne Ryan(28.86 calc). Also a little bitch just on the card Rhias Beauty won at the second time of asking for new owners Adam Laycock and his syndicate in a decent (29.38 calc). It must be said that we have a few bitches coming back from season and a few inexperienced dogs in training so should benefit in a few weeks time.
PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
OPEN RACE:- STRIDE ON BABE
GRADED:- SHELBOURNE RYAN
WHATS ON THIS WEEK
Tuesday sees the start of the Silver Collar at Walthamstow and Fear Robben is bursting to go and will be a warm order to win this event. Discreet Cat has a tough heat and will need to lead to win. Saturday is the all open card that supports this event. We shall be travelling to Hove again this Thursday with a few runners and Directors Chair is pencilled in for a trial. We will also try and take the ones we took to Romford last Friday back again. Sunday is the start of the £10,000 Coventry Summer Derby and we hope to have Centaur Decree and Killer Keane in action.