Laughil Blake heads Irish Derby market
The great Laughil Blake returned to Shelbourne Park yesterday morning for the launch of the Boylesports Irish Greyhound Derby, which will start at headquarters on Thursday, August 13.
It will be the second year of Boylesports' support for the premier Irish classic and the total prize-fund will be €240,000, with the winner earning €125,000, the runner-up €22,500, the third €12,500 and the unplaced finalists €7,500 each.
John Boyle, MD of the sponsoring company, was present and he expressed his happiness with last year's initial involvement.
Of course, as a prominent greyhound owner, Boyle hopes to have a strong challenger in the form of Boylesports Jet, which is on its way back to full fitness following injury.
Leon Blanche of Boylesports revealed that Laughil Blake is the 12/1 favourite to become only the second greyhound ever to successfully defend the Irish Derby title.
The Derby final on Saturday, September 19 will be watched by audiences worldwide, and an additional boost is that the last three rounds will be shown live on RPGTV.
The draw for the BoyleSports Derby will be made on Monday, August 10.
Meanwhile, the Owen McKenna-trained Farloe Blitz has hardened as favourite for Saturday's English Derby final and is now a best-priced evens for the contest to be run at Wimbledon.
Many firms have him as low as 4/5 but you can still trade in places as evens, while Liz Nair's Eden The Kid is now sharing second favouritism on 5/1 with Danny Riordan's Rio Quattro.
The second Irish finalist, Peter Cronin's Tynwald Bish, is generally on offer at 14/1, which represents quite a decent price about the only dog which has a prayer of leading Farloe Blitz around the opening bend.
Full betting on the Derby final is: evens Farloe Blitz; 5 Eden The Kid, Rio Quattro; 11 Making Paper; 14 Tynwald Bish; 20 Millwards Davy.
By the way, speaking of international events, entries are invited from leading trackers in both Ireland and English for the Marshes Shopping Centre International to be run at Dundalk on Sunday, July 12.
It is run over the 550 yards distance and, for one run, boasts the magnificent winner's prize of €20,000.
Declan Carey yesterday sent out a request for more entries for the ECC Timber Champion Open 550 which will close to entries tomorrow morning and will begin on Saturday.
A 24-dog event for greyhounds whelped in April 2013 or later, it will carry a winner's prize of €7,000 and usually attracts a very good entry of the leading younger classic contenders.