Dog Chat: Makeshift a real Derby threat to Boher Paddy
Greyhound enthusiasts would be forgiven for becoming confused with all the top action on offer this week.
At home, we have four major finals on Saturday, and there will be 21 Irish-trained runners setting out on the glory trail in the English Derby at Wimbledon. The English Derby action will be confined to two nights of racing, with just 146 entries.
It could hardly be described as the greatest-quality Derby, but it will still take the world of winning.
There will be 11 Irish in action on Friday and the remaining 10 on Saturday.
One banker heat winner would appear to be Dolores Ruth's Razldazl Jayfkay in what looks a handy Heat 8, but the race of the round could be Heat 9, where Ruth has Makeshift in action against 8/1 ante-post favourite Boher Paddy. All four Ruth challengers have big first-round prospects, with Razldazl George (Heat 1) and Razldazl Lord (Heat 14) also well treated.
Others that should score are Fraser Black's Krug Ninety Five (Heat 12) and Paul Hennessy's Barefoot Bullet (Heat 21).
It's a big weekend for the Ruth kennels as Kingo will be a very short-priced favourite for the Hegarty Bookmakers 600 final at Shelbourne on Saturday.
Currently quoted between 4/7 and 1/2 by the firms, he does appear to be a banker bet to win this great event but you can never take things for granted in big finals such as this.
The Hegarty final will mark the end of the line for a great track performer St Louis Spirit. His Abbeyfeale-based trainer Jerry Griffin has announced that the remarkable veteran, just three days short of his fourth birthday, will run his last race in the final.
He has been a terrific servant for Jerry and owner Emma Browne and will stand at stud with the trainer.
Saturday's card at Shelbourne also includes the finals of the Larry Dunne Open 525 and the Healthcare & Transport Services Puppy Oaks, while the Barry's Tea Open 750 final at Curraheen will also be run that night.
Friday night will be a big one at Kilkenny, with the final of the Broadway Pet Foods McCalmont Cup and the second round of the Red Mills Champion Unraced down for decision.