No Ciaran but Titus has the spirit
Having broken the track record last week when winning his second-round heat in the Wallace/ Murray Longford Derby, Badminton Ciaran has subsequently been sold to PJ Fahy and will not contest the third semi-final this evening.
Ciaran had looked the likely winner of the event, which carries a winner's prize of €8,500, but in his absence the sponsors Howard Wallace and Francie Murray could well land their own prize with the rapidly improving Titus Spirit (9.36).
With just two to qualify from each of the heats there will be little room for error, but Titus Spirit looks well housed in six and can win from one of the Ollie Bray runners Dream Knight or Bakery Lane.
The Ray and Eugene Dowling-owned Kylehill Strauss (9.12) faded last week but can lead all the way to win the first heat, while Robert Gleeson can have the answer to the second heat with Droopys Arietta or Droopys De Rossi.
Wallace and Murray can also be on the mark in the final of the Barber Kennels 525 at Dundalk, where Take Note, a litter sister to Titus Spirit, goes from trap one and can reverse semi-final placings with Swift Boreas.
The first of the new Friday 'Harold's Cross at Shelbourne' meetings will be an all-graded affair but a dog which has been mixing in very hot company can be the night's banker.
Fraser Black's Caddy Shack looks very well housed in the concluding contest over 525 yards.