Tuesday 16 January 2018

Hero makes it six of the best at Clonmel

Greyhounds
Greyhounds
Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

BOYLESPORTS Hero brought his unbeaten sequence to six when again turning on the style in the quarter-finals of the Produce Stakes at Clonmel and remains very much the favourite to capture the €30,000 prize.

A moderate start left him with plenty to do but he quickly made up the ground to challenge into the first bend and then shot past Paradise Madrid and Midtown Raffa on the second bend.

Droopys Der made up sizeable ground in behind but Boylesports Hero comfortably held him at bay by a length and a half in 28.43 with Midtown Raffa also qualifying in third.

The performance delighted owner John Boyle, who had been out of the country for the first two rounds of the stake but he was present on Sunday.

Boylesports Hero had been fastest in the two previous rounds but this time his return was bettered in the last heat by John Linehan's impressive winner Droopys Rafael.

Rafael absolutely flew from traps and was always clear, eventually coming home seven lengths ahead of Razldazl Danann in a best of the round 28.40.

The other heat winners were Bridie Moore's Clares Wonder (28.69) and Michael O'Donovan's Laughil Blake (28.56).

In next Sunday's semi-finals, Boylesports Hero will be up against Laughil Blake, Riverside Pat and Clares Wonder in the second heat, while the opening contest will have the likes of the John Linehan pair Droopys Rafael and Droopys Der as well as Emers Superstar, Midtown Raffa, Shaneboy Frankie and Dragon Doon.

LONG WAIT

PAUL Hennessy gained his first major prize when Trade Union won the third ever running of the Red Mills Champion Unraced at Kilkenny.

He had to wait another 22 years before he was again successful in the prestigious event run at his local track and it arrived on Sunday when Jaytee Valencia raced to victory.

Owner John Turner bought the dog from John Kennedy following his first-round victory when known as Artic Bolt.

It took him a little time to settle in fully but he really got it right when he flashed out of traps and led all the way to win the prestigious prize by four lengths from the strong-running Razldazl Zar in a brilliant 28.87. Valentia Slate was another two lengths third.

The Red Mills Champion Juvenile at the same track will be the next on the agenda for Jaytee Valencia. The ECC Champion Puppy would be another possibility prior to the Boylesports Irish Derby.

HORAN DUO

AFTER winning a heat of the Oaks on Saturday night with their kennel star Curtistown Lace, Georgina and Jenny Horan can continue their fine run of form at Harold's Cross by recording a double in the last two races.

Curtistown Scram (10.00) faces a tricky draw in the stripes, but has the early speed to clear her rivals before going on to make all in the tenth race, while Curtistown Jewel (10.15) can complete the double.

Irish Independent

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