Dog chat: Murphys and Fahy spend big to boost Ireland's Derby hand
A few big-money deals were struck over the weekend to further enhance the Irish challenge for the Williamhill.com English Derby, which starts at Wimbledon in late April.
First up were the Cayman Islands-based team of Bryan and Kathleen Murphy as they acquired the highly rated Rattlin Goldstar, which will remain in the care of Paul Hennessy. Then on Saturday, Cabra Noel was bought by PJ Fahy -- he will be moving to Charlie Lister for a Wimbledon challenge.
Both these dogs should be rated as serious English Derby prospects. Rattlin Goldstar has been renamed Barefoot Allstar and he gave an indication of his ability with a flashing 17.42 around Curraheen on Saturday.
But for Irish followers the SIS Live Shelbourne Gold Cup semi-finals dominate the week, and then there is the College Causeway/ Killahan Phanter Easter Cup to look forward to.
Excitement is building as the unbeaten Milldean Panther bids for an amazing 13th successive victory on Saturday night.
The supreme test comes when he races from trap four -- he will have in-form veteran Broadstrand Lad on his inner. Milldean has looked a little rusty in his first two runs this year but has won by four lengths both times and has clocked a best of the competition in 29.60. The provincial scene picks up considerably over the next couple of week. Entries close today at 12.0 for the Gallivan Murphy Hooper Dolan Juvenile Classic at Tralee, and rumours suggest that the field will include a few real flying machines.
The first round will be run on Friday.
The first of the season's top sprints, the Kudos Creative Catering Supersprint, starts at Curraheen on Friday, while the Gain Feeds Irish Cesarewitch will start at Mullingar on Saturday week.
There will be huge Irish interest in tonight's televised meeting at Wimbledon, which features the Racing Post Juvenile Championship.
Irish dogs competing are Razldazl Bugatti, Pablo Supreme, Razldazl Rioga, Razldazl Marilyn, Razldazl Jayfkay, Loughteen Blanco and Shelbourne Geoff.
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