Wednesday 18 October 2017

Greyhound Racing: Vic the one to spearhead Irish Derby charge

Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

They talk about Saturday being moving day in golf circles, but tonight's action at Wimbledon will have a huge bearing on the destination of this year's English Derby trophy.

We have five survivors and all of them have their chances of making it to the semi-finals, but the second quarter-final will hold special interest for the Irish supporters.

Once again we have three dogs together in the one heat and our two favourites, Fraser Black's Droopys Jet and Liam Dowling's Ballymac Vic, will be in opposition.

Both are ideally drawn in traps one and three respectively with Paul Hennessy's notoriously slow-starting Priceless Pilot between them. It is a perfect trap draw for all three, but the crunch could well come on the opening bend where any bumping would be potentially disastrous.

The major danger to the Irish runners here is well-housed Screen Critic. I find it difficult to decide between Droopys and Ballymac Vic (8.49) but the latter just earns the vote.

Don't be surprised if all three of our hopes qualify.

PJ Fahy's Tyrur Sugar Ray (8.34) should also qualify from the opening heat where Shaneboy Spencer can upset Farloe Warhawk early and therefore leave the way wide open for a big, late winning burst from Tyrur.

The other Irish runner is Hennessy's Ringtown Snowy (9.04) – he is in against the top UK hope Ballymac Eske as well as fast-starting Shaneboy Alley and the strong-running Teejays Bluehawk and Holdem Spy.

If Ringtown can make one of his slick Irish starts then he could well reach the semi-finals.

The sponsors make Paradise Silva and Leamaneigh Turbo the 5/2 joint favourites for the final of the Boylesports Race of Champions at Tralee on Friday. Last year's winner Razldazl Rioga is at 11/4 and it is 6/1 bar the three.

It promises to be a great night at the Kingdom Stadium with a high-class supporting card and two very interesting finals to the Kingdom Supporters' Club Unraced Stake and the Dunbia Open Bitch Stake.

BEST BETS

Go with Tyrur Sugar Ray to win his heat in the English Derby tonight and each-way Ringtown Snowy.

At Harold's Cross a strong case can be made for Walter Dunne's Floodys Sophie (8.50), which is capable of leading all the way in this A6 contest.

The first round of the Dgoba Summer A5 will be run and Black's Moment Of Time (9.18) should be capable of plenty of improvement.

LIVE ON TV

All the Derby action tonight at Wimbledon will be shown live on Sky Sports 3 between 7.30 and 9.30.

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