Friday 24 November 2017

McVeigh's charge can take Sprint Crown

Bord na gCon is in debt of around €21m and faces “very significant” challenges to become financially stable
Bord na gCon is in debt of around €21m and faces “very significant” challenges to become financially stable
Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

A busy weekend kicks off with the finals of the Peggy Kelly Islandbridge Sprint and the DGOBA Dublin Cup at Harold's Cross, while at Newbridge the traditional Cox Cup first round is full of interest.

The Islandbridge Sprint has always produced some terrific sprinting and this year's competition has lived up to the rating. The fact that six inside seeds have qualified for the final means that there may be early crowding, so the rise of the lids will have a huge bearing on the race.

By virtue of the fact that he is unbeaten in the competition and has drawn the inside box, the Jerry Melia trained Burnt Oak Bolt must have an outstanding chance. However, he will need a better start than he has been making if he is going to avoid being tightened up into the bend.

Diarmuid Graham's Mesedo Black got one of his flying starts last week and needs a similar start to get involved in the firing line, while Gary Silcock's Isabels Boy is another with the class to play a significant role.

Derek and Brian Loughnane's Cyclone Sandy could have problems avoiding a clash with Marcella Clyne's inside seeking Clydal Jack in the early yards and it could be that Aidan McVeigh's Crown Champ (9.10) is well drawn out in six. He is a dog with huge gears and his first round 17.43 is the best of the competition.

Dublin Cup

Despite being an A4 contest, the most valuable race is the Dublin Cup at the Cross and here the Noeline Bray owned Three Star Queen (9.40) can collect the €5,000 prize. Three Star Queen has a real chance of leading all and if she takes the bend she will likely collect.

Ray Gorman's Blackhall Willow was an impressive semi-final winner, but will need a slick exit to guarantee a clear passage. Liam O'Rourke's Toto is capable of a big run from two, while Peter Tiernan's Abbeyville Senor and Kevin Losty's Dundrum Spirit are also entitled to respect.

However the rapidly improving Baytown Bisto could be the dark one and Yvonne Barry's puppy is put forward as the main danger to Three Star Queen.

Hulk's test

The massively built Greenwell Hulk (9.0) will be a red-hot favourite for the first heat of the Cox Cup at Newbridge and will probably win, but he could hardly be described as the ideal type for this circuit. His class should win out, but the layers might be tempted to take him on.

Star Ace and Shopping Basket (9.15) look the big two in Heat 2, while Kilgraney Tomson (9.30) is perfectly housed in the third.

Redwood Mick (9.45) can dominate the final heat.

Fiery out

Owen McKenna reports that his English Derby quarter-finalists Fiery Splendour and Vanrooney will not be running on final night at Wimbledon.

"Fiery Splendour was lame and has a few little problems and will be rested, while Vanrooney will not run until he has been checked out."

Irish Independent

Promoted Links

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport