Sport Greyhounds

Sunday 15 December 2019

Puppy Derby and Irish Laurels entries starting to roll in

Michael Fortune

With all the hype surrounding the Boylesports.com Irish Derby, we must remember that there will be life after the Derby, and two classics will be starting in the next two weeks.

The recently launched Dublin Coach Puppy Derby with a winner's prize of €22,500 closes to entries at Harold's Cross on Monday next and the full first round will be run on Friday week, the eve of the Irish Derby final.

Derek Frehill yesterday reported from the Cross that the entries have started rolling and a large number of Puppy Derby entries are expected to be trialled this week.

"We are expecting some of the Texacloth finalists and others to be given trials this week.

"We have just 18 entries thus far but there is plenty of time to go. Robert Gleeson and Pat Buckley have been in touch and they hope to have good-sized teams for the event," said Frehill.

Owen McKenna expects to have two runners, including his Texacloth Derby finalist Farloe Blitz. Peter Cronin plans to run El Pedro and Quick Jack, while the Paul Hennessy team will include Jaytee Berlin and Barefoot Big Ben.

The Red Mills Irish Laurels has a winner's prize of €30,000 and begins the Saturday after the Derby final. There were some fast runs last weekend, with Graham Holland's Sidarian Blaze and General Wolf clocking in with 28.10 and 28.20 runs, while Darragh Morrissey's Indigojack went around in 28.15.

Paul Hennessy gave three of his runners trials over the sprint distance last Saturday and Jaytee Barzalona was best with a 17.54 run, while Barefoot Apollo beat Jaytee Valencia by a couple of lengths in 17.57. They are likely to be accompanied in the draw by Kilara Hey Mac, De Real McCoy and Say Si Si.

Peter Cronin has indicated that his English Derby finalist and Irish Sprint Cup winner Crokers Champ will be going to Cork, and he also hopes to have Tynwald Bish and All About Ya.

McKenna's Laurels team will comprise Roxholme Ted, Farloe Calvin and Business Scholar. Roxholme has returned from England to contest the classic and he was impressive when clocking 17.44 in a trial.

Best bets

There is a nine-race card at Shelbourne this evening and my idea of the best bet is a dog that hasn't managed to make the first three from four outings to date.

Tyrur O'Driscoll (8.30) is a young dog that qualified well and PJ Fahy has wasted no time in moving him up in distance. The long run to the bend should suit him and he should win this heat of an A3/4 Dual Distance.

Another that makes appeal is the Robert Gleeson-trained Festival Time (9.45), which looks a real stayer in the making.

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