Greyhounds: The Weekend
It really is a case of following the stars at Shelbourne Park tonight where the semi-finals of the Tote Gold Cup will be backed up by open races crammed with the cream of the greyhound world.
The Tote Gold Cup has produced a host of upsets and some top-class racing thus far, and we are set for two great contests this evening, with Dundalk man Larry Dunne nominated to complete a heat double.
Dunne has Fane Basher in the opening semi and new favourite Da Hatter in the second and both have the ability to lash out in front and kick on for victory.
Basher hasn't run to his usual level of form to date, but you can expect a smarter effort tonight when he can win the dash to the bend from Tyrur Bucko and go on to victory from that rival and either of the Paul Hennessy runners, De Ex Factor or Tranquil Time.
Looking back, it is difficult to fathom how Da Hatter failed to land a major gamble at Shelbourne in December. He is unbeaten in three runs since and is getting better all the time. He will need to be on his toes again with Tyrur Giovanni on his outside in four and Thurlesbeg Joker in six, while the fast-starting Malouda wears the orange. It's a very competitive race, but Da Hatter is going to take some stopping.
The presence of Oran Classic, Mesedo Blue, Tyrur Quinn, Faypoint Man and Tyrur Francie in supporting opens adds massively to the appeal of a fantastic card.
Mention of Hennessy, the Gowran trainer will have Group Skater and Hello Hippy, both wearing the red jacket, in action in the second-round heats of the Grand Prix at Henlow tomorrow lunchtime. Both can win.
There are two further major meetings this evening with the entire 12 heats of the Gain Feeds Irish Cesarewitch to be run at Mullingar, while down at Curraheen Park, the second round heats of the Kudos Supersprint should produce some top-drawer performances.
5pt Tyrur Francie, 9.15, Shel Pk
3pt Da Hatter, 10.15, Shel Pk