Recent runnings of the Red Mills Open Unraced Stake at Clonmel have proved to be a tremendous guide to future classics. So, much rests on the shoulders of this year's winner Shaneboy Frankie following his victory on Sunday night.
Owned by Michael Kiely from Kilmallock, Shaneboy Frankie had run very consistently through the competition and came through late to grab a half-length verdict over Express Max in 28.91, with Liosgarbh Tom some two lengths back in third.
Kiely has had a number of offers for the dog, but is "not selling yet" and has the Kirby Memorial at Limerick in mind for the dog.
Kiely won the event previously with Shaneboy Fox in 2007 and this latest winner is closely related to that hero.
What could also prove to have be a very significant result was the victory of Sidarian Lisa in the final of the Greyhound & Petworld Open 790.
This lassie only made her marathon debut in the semi-finals of this stake and she has taken to the new discipline magnificently.
She won that semi-final by a length from Kathleens Holly and, in the final, led all the way to beat the same rival by two-and-a-half lengths in a time of 44.21.
Graham Holland's bitch is an obvious leading contender for such events as the Barry's Tea 750 and the Gain Corn Cuchulainn. Shanless Becky never got into the race, but, subject to a veterinary check this morning, is still on course for the Golden Jacket, which starts at Crayford on Saturday.
The other open final on Sunday's card was the Christys Bolt Open Bitch and here the Neilus O'Connell-trained Razldazl Amy held off Express Micro by a short head in 28.94.
Planning for the Show of Passion in London on Monday, February 17 is nearing completion and the organisers of the Irish travelling party require final numbers for the bus trip as soon as possible.
The plan is to send three buses. One will travel from Tralee and will take the main route to Dublin, stopping at most of the main towns. The second will travel from Cork via Clonmel, Waterford and Wexford to Rosslare, while the third bus will leave Galway and go via Athlone, Mullingar and Navan to Dublin.
The organisers are Paddy Ryan, Noel Holland, Wayne McCarthy, Sean Bourke, Geraldine McSweeney, and Tommy Bolton.
Harold's Cross has the racing scene to itself this evening and the Annual Awards will be presented to the top performers of 2013. Liam O'Rourke will be honoured as top trainer and he can have at least one winner on the card, with Run Farley (9.55) nominated as a likely sort. Another that makes appeal is Jeanette McKenzie's Town Flirt (9.29) from what looks a favourable draw.