Thursday 19 April 2018

Clares Rocket primed for UK racing debut


It will be a busy weekend across channel for Irish dogs. (Stock image)
It will be a busy weekend across channel for Irish dogs. (Stock image)
Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

Already firmly established as an 8/1 favourite for the Star Sports English Derby, Irish superstar tracker Clares Rocket will make his UK racing debut when he contests Division A of the Derby Trial Stakes at Towcester this evening.

Clares Rocket (9.06) gave British enthusiasts a sample of his ability when dipping well under the Towcester track record for the 500 metres last week in a trial.

But now he faces the real test and it will be a huge surprise if he doesn't live up to his tall reputation by winning this race in a canter. It can be viewed live on RPGTV (Sky Channel 468).

Graham Holland also has Impressive Guy in Division B (8.34) but the one to beat here is surely another Irish runner, Owen McKenna's Hot Trend, which had no luck in Scotland but should have these rivals struggling from an early stage.

Barney Mooney's Dog Mac Arthure was the fastest winner in the second round of the BIF Produce Stakes at Clonmel and he has drawn the inside trap in the third quarter-final next Sunday.

Other second-round winners were Drive On Blazer, Crossfield Kate, Clonbrien Hero, Vahsel Bay and Lughill Robbie.

It will be a busy weekend across channel for Irish dogs, with Pat Buckley's Coolavanny Mason and Pat Guilfoyle's Good News contesting the final of the RPGTV Scottish Derby next Saturday at Shawfield.

Then on Sunday it will be the turn of Peter Cronin's Cometwopass as he carries the favourite's tag into the semi-final of the Betfred Gymcrack at Kinsley.

The early-paced tracker was most impressive in the first round as he led all the way in fast time and was given a 2/1 outright quote afterwards.

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