Wednesday 7 December 2016

Dog chat: Dream alive for O'Neill in Laurels

Published 11/10/2011 | 05:00

Tom O'Neill must have experienced heartbreak when Dream Walker missed out on an Irish Derby success by only a matter of centimetres last month.

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But the Castletownroche trainer is now entertaining hopes of gaining ample compensation in the Irish Laurels at Curraheen Park.

They love nothing more in Cork than a local winner of the Laurels and Dream Walker is the only all-Cork contender in contention, being owned by Glanmire's John Egan.

Dream Walker is now the favourite for the Classic at a best price 7/2, taking over at the top from Rockchase Bullet, which appears to be finding it difficult to adjust to the Curraheen circuit, despite turning in a couple of tremendous performances.

It could be argued that, of the top fancies, Dream Walker is the best drawn with an inside slot in the second heat. But it's a very tough contest, with Happy Hermit, St Louis Charlie, Deerfield Music, Razldazl Rioga and Vito Dawn in opposition but the draw gives him a major advantage.

The opening heat is another high-quality affair but, again, the draw gives the inside threesome of Leeview Jet, Rockchase Bullet and Deerfield Sings a perceived advantage and they could well advance to the final.

The semi-finals of the Mannion Builders Supplies Open 750 will be run on Saturday at Shelbourne. The star of the first round was Denis Kiely's six-bend debutant Shaneboy Fantasy as he clocked a smart 41.59 in gaining a runaway victory.

Shaneboy's big test will come over the next two outings. He should go clear in the second semi-final but he has a number of big finishers to keep at bay, headed by Welesbourne Dan and Droopys Casanova.

Irish Independent

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