Greyhounds: Shelbourne Park
Published 14/05/2011 | 05:00
With advance bookings on a par with Derby final night, tonight's meeting at Shelbourne Park will go down as one of the biggest gatherings of the year.
And it will be quality all the way, with the final of the Hegarty Bookmakers 600 backed up by two other valuable open competitions and a host of terrific supporting open contests.
Dolores Ruth will fly in from her English Derby base outside London to see star tracker Kingo attempt to complete an unbeaten path through the famous 600-yard competition. Everything that has happened thus far suggests that Kingo is eminently qualified to lift the €20,000 prize.
Following wide-margin victories in the opening rounds, he had to show the other side of his character in the semi-final, where he shrugged off the powerful challenge of Droopys Joe off the final bend to ease two lengths clear by the line.
Droopys Joe is again drawn to run a big race, while the outside runners Fatboyz Tyson and Pool Hawk will also be prominent on the run-up.
We can expect Master Blaster and St Louis Spirit to enter the scene from halfway. Fatboyz Tyson could emerge the most lethal threat, but Kingo is a confident choice.
Owen McKenna's Tubbertelly Dubh is the one to beat in the final of the Larry Dunne Open, where Deerfield Music could step up to be his major rival.
The first of the finals will be the Healthcare & Transport Services Puppy Oaks, and here cases can be made for all six.
Shelbourne Abi has reached the final unbeaten, but Droopys Twirl, Olympic Stunner and Wonder Wag will prove major threats. Don't be surprised if Olympic Stunner credits event sponsor Tony Howard with his own prize.
Meanwhile, there will be 10 Irish-trained dogs on English Derby duty at Wimbledon tonight, with Barefoot Bullet and Melodys Royal a likely double.
5 pts Allowdale Prince 9.0 Shel Pk
3 pts Tyrur Monica 8.32 Shel Pk