Massive €80k prize up for grabs in 'Kirby'
Details for the second staging of the Con & Annie Kirby Memorial have been released and it will again boast a massive winner's prize of €80,000.
However, the early dates for this year's English Derby will effectively rule out any possibility of a Limerick finalist taking part in the Wimbledon Classic.
The Kirby Memorial, which will be for 96 dogs whelped since January 1, 2012 is due to commence at Limerick Stadium on Friday, March 28, with the final due to be run on Saturday, April 26. The English Derby will then start either on Thursday, May 1 or Friday, May 2.
Trial Stakes for the Kirby Memorial, which is sponsored by JP and Noreen McManus, will be staged at each of the 19 tracks in Ireland, while there is also provision for five Trial Stakes to be run in the UK.
The Kirby event is the second most valuable competition in Ireland, behind the Derby itself. The two placed dogs in the final will receive €20,000 and €10,000, while unplaced finalists will claim €5,000 each.
In advance of the Kirby stake, work will be carried out on the controversial first bend at Limerick in an attempt to eliminate the trouble which regularly occurs at that point.
Well-known greyhound owner and Meath West TD Ray Butler will be the official government representative at the 'Show of Passion' Gathering in London on Monday, February 17.
He will bring with him letters of support for the proposed Wimbledon Greyhound Stadium from Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney and Minister for State Tom Hayes.
Backing for the project is gathering pace again after the confirmation that Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, is now strongly supporting the development ahead of the proposed football stadium.
Dan and Mary Carr have a regular stream of winners at Harold's Cross and in Glown Clara (9.45) they have a young bitch very much on the rise.
She has won her last two and can achieve the hat-trick in the semi-final of an A4 Stake. The draw looks right and she can lead home Mad Lennon.
The Tommy Bolton-trained Head For Fame (10.0) was officially retired not long ago, but the veteran tracker was in such good form that he was brought back to racing.
He can outpace this evening's rivals to the bend and should hold the anticipated late run from Ravenswood Bear.