Monday 18 December 2017

Ballymac Eske set to miss Dundalk International race

Ballymac Eske will not be running in the Dundalk International on Saturday week
Ballymac Eske will not be running in the Dundalk International on Saturday week
Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

While he could still be a possible for the forthcoming Irish Derby, leading UK hope Ballymac Eske will not be running in the Dundalk International on Saturday week.

Trainer Barrie Draper appeared to be favouring the Irish one-off event prior to a Derby challenge but, following discussions with the owners, he has informed the Dundalk management that he will not run and will instead go in the Select Stakes at Nottingham.

There is a possibility that the English Derby runner-up Droopys Ward might come over for the International and his trainer Paul Young is understood to be discussing the matter with the owners.

The sole English dog entered for the valuable International is Roxholme Ted which is likely to be trialled around Dundalk this weekend. Hayley Keightley's youngster made quite an impact in the English Derby, winning his first three outings and starting favourite for the quarter-final but he then exited after being badly baulked.

Irish entries booked in for trials on Friday night include Boylesports Hero, Mind The Net and Paradise Madison while Graham Holland is bringing a team of dogs up for trials on Saturday for both the International meeting and the Sprint Cup and these will include the likes of Sidarian Blaze and Vans Viking.

One other potential home runner in the international is Owen McKenna's Vanrooney which stumbled at the start of his earlier trial around the track when he clocked 30.09 for the 550 yards.

Best bets

The fact that there are no World Cup games tonight should be a help as far as Shelbourne is concerned and there is an interesting nine-race card assembled. A few puppy races see the introduction of some well-bred and well-qualified pups.

However, the best betting propositions are in the latter half of the card and the heats of the A2/3 600 could throw up a few good winners. Sean Keenan's Farloe Gucci (9.45) let us down last week but he was involved in trouble and should relish this trip.

Henry Kelly's Karlow Master (10.0) has been performing very well in Kilkenny and ran big races against Jaytee Valencia and Kilara Hey Mac in the Champion Juvenile. This big finisher can see off Ballintine Star in the last contest. Another to keep on side is John Lynd's progressive Glencroft Bolt (9.15), which should win the final of the A3 competition.

Galway stakes

The big events that will conclude in conjunction with the Galway Racing Festival will commence at Galway Stadium next week.

Top event will be the €10,000 ECC Timber Champion Bitch 550 where the runner-up will receive €4,000, third €2,000 and the unplaced finalists €1,330. Entries close on Tuesday and the heats will be on Friday week.

The 48 dog €4,350 Flaherty Markets Corrib Plate A6 525 (entries must have raced or trialled at Galway) starts tomorrow week; entries close on Saturday night.

Thurles dates

There will be no racing at Thurles on Saturday due to the big hurling game taking place at the adjacent Semple Stadium.

The six first round heats of the Thurles Fresh Milk Tipperary Cup will be run on Friday along with the final of the TSC Novice Stake and the final of the TSC A6 525.

Irish Independent

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