Classy entry for wide-open Puppy Derby
It is great to see the puppies hitting the headlines, guaranteeing the future top-class racing at the tracks.
Following a sensational unraced competition at Shelbourne on Wednesday, we have the first round of the Texacloth Puppy Derby at Newbridge tonight.
This is the 40th year of Aidan and Caran Walsh's sponsorship of this event and the entry looks classy.
It is hard to be emphatic about the identity of the long-odds favourite but, no doubt, the market will have settled into a pattern by the time the five heats have been run.
A few suggestions for tonight's heats are Tarsna Havana (8.30), Swords Ace (8.45), Tucker Foley (9.0), Skywalker Rory (9.15) and Vivaro Swift (9.30).
We mentioned that Wednesday's Unraced Stake at Shelbourne could produce the fireworks and it was certainly confirmed on the night when we had two heats won in the sensational times of 28.46 and 28.52.
John and Len Tuohy own Trade Eoin, which looked a real prospect as he led virtually all the way for an emphatic five-length margin over Remington in 28.46.
It was his early pace which really hit the button, and his litter brother Trade Freddie did nothing wrong either as he won the following heat in 28.97.
The other star of the show was John Fox's Philidora, which flew from traps and won by six and a half lengths from Graigues Loch in 28.52. She performed in the manner of a potential Oaks winner next year.
There will be much interest in the running of the Tommy Bolton-trained Gilroy Kate (10.25) in the concluding AO/1 525 at Harold's Cross.
The Tony Griffin and David O'Shea-owned daughter of Hondo Black and Foxhill Lucky has been a real show-stealer at the Dublin track and is bidding for a seventh win on the trot. It would be a rarely achieved feat.
Bet of the night at the Cross could be Dolores Ruth's Puppy Derby prospect Razldazl Rince (10.10), which made a mess of the start last time and can make amends this time.
A reminder to Tipperary racegoers: the switch of race dates between Clonmel and Thurles has taken place and tonight's meeting will be at Clonmel, while Thurles have shifted back to Thursday nights.
Fenians GAA Club in Johnstown will be staging a fundraiser at Kilkenny track this evening. The feature race of the card is the Morrissey/ Tynan Memorial final, where the David Kennedy-trained Final Bound (9.12) looks a winner.
An interesting runner at Kilkenny will be Trade Riley in the opening unraced contest, a litter brother to the aforementioned Trade Eoin and Trade Freddie.