Mimis can pull off another Laurels surprise
Published 25/04/2015 | 02:30
There's a feast of greyhound action on the tracks this evening which will keep the punters extremely busy and satisfied.
On the home front we have the quarter-finals of the Irish Independent Irish Laurels at Curraheen Park, backed up by a superb Shelbourne programme, while across in Shawfield in Glasgow there were be three Irish runners in the final of the Racing Post GTV Scottish Derby.
Let's concentrate first on the Laurels quarter-finals, where Bruno Ya Know has been withdrawn from the second heat.
I have been greatly impressed by the flying finishes of Mimis Ace (9.34) and John Kiely's dog could well spring another surprise at the expense of Rastafari Vic and Burgess Rumble.
Tom O'Donovan's Drive On Royal (9.19) may be too strong for rivals in the first heat.
Despite the fact that Midtown Raffa (9.49) hasn't hit top form, he is unbeaten after two rounds and is the ante-post favourite to lift the €30,000 prize.
Trainer Moss O'Connor is hoping that he will start getting his trapping right in the third heat and if so he should make it through from the well-drawn Coran Sky and Burgess Four.
Scartaglin-based O'Connor has a strong second string in Baile Mhic (10.04) which is actually second favourite in the lists. He faces a real battle in the final heat, with Barefoot Apollo and Iceroad Driver early paced rivals, while the likes of Skywalker Echo will be finishing strongly. But Baile Mhic appears to be hitting top form at just the right time.
The crowds at Shelbourne have been hugely encouraging in recent times and there is a bumper attendance expected for a programme that includes the English Derby Trial Stake and the six heats of the Healthcare & Transport Services Puppy Oaks.
The valuable Trial Stake can be best left to either Farloe Blitz (9.58) or Clares Wonder, and the early pace of Owen McKenna's Farloe may swing the verdict over this 525-yard trip.
I can't recall a better advance line-up for the Puppy Oaks over the years and the clash of Ballydoyle Honey (7.58) and Droopys Streak should be a real highlight. Ballydoyle may shade it while Yahoo Perlena (7.43), Coolavanny Slip (8.13), Badminton Maid (8.28) and Ballymac Shirley (8.58) can be other heat winners.
With three of the six runners in the line-up, hopes are high for an Irish success in the Racing Post GTV Scottish Derby final at Shawfield (9.15).
Pat Buckley has both Coolavanny Jap and Lenson Sanchez, while Fraser B lack has Save The Don. The trap draw could favour Lenson Sanchez and he gets the vote to lift the £20,000 prize.