Matt and Roddick top International field
The Marshes International at Dundalk is really taking shape, with four of the six runners in the €20,000 contest now confirmed, and the track management hope to finalise the line-up by the weekend.
Invitations have been issued to Irish Derby champion Ballymac Matt and English Derby runner-up Droopys Roddick as well as the UK duo of Scottish Derby winner Hot Pipe and English St Leger winner Fizzypop Buddy.
The contenders for the final position are last year's Irish Derby finalist Cable Bay, Scottish Derby finalist Fair Taxes, Irish Cesarewitch winner Droopys Acrobat, English Derby semi-finalist Jaytee Dutch, English Derby fourth Lenson Rocky and last year's runner-up and recent Race of Champions winner Paradise Maverik.
Both Ballymac Matt and Droopys Roddick proved their well-being with 28.10 and 28.13 trials at Tralee last Friday while Fair Taxes clocked 28.34 at Dundalk. .
The valuable ECC Timber Open 550 starts on Saturday at Shelbourne. It is advertised as a 24-dog event for June pups or younger which have not run more than six races, but so far only 18 namesare in the book. Entries will close tomorrow morning.
Two of the leading contenders will be Owen McKenna's Cahir Castle and Paul Hennessy's Priceless Brandy. Cahir Castle has already won in 28.15 at Shelbourne while Priceless Brandy (28.23) moved well in a trial on his first visit to Shelbourne .
The Gain Corn Cuchulainn is due to start at Harold's Cross on Friday week and UK star Fizzypop Buddy will be taking in the first round prior to his Dundalk engagement. Entries for that 750 yards classic close on Monday next.
Roan View (10.02) appreciates an inside draw and the bitch owned by Kevin Mallon and Stephen Lambert has a good winning opportunity in the A4/5 tenth race at the Cross tonight.
Derek Kehoe's Slaneyside Hero (10.17) has gone nine races since his last victory but he is drawn to go close in the concluding A6 contest.