GREYHOUND PREVIEW: In this week’s previews we look at the semi-finals of the Juvenile Classic from Towcester (Sunday) as well as the Sussex Cup semis from Hove on Saturday night. Plus: the best of the pre derby trial action from Shelbourne Park from Thursday and Friday night.

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Destiny Holds All the Aces in Towcester Juvenile Classic

New Destiny has been paw perfect in the opening rounds of the Juvenile Classic at Towcester and as we approach this weekend’s semi-final stage Mark Wallis’s daughter of Grangeview Ten is no bigger than even money for outright honours. New Destiny goes in the second semi-final this Sunday at 14:52. Her main danger looks to be Ballymac John. John looked a dog with a massive future in the early rounds of this year’s derby but it’s safe to say he has yet to hit the heights he once promised. Only a September 21 whelp, he still has time on his side and it’s a bit premature to right him off just yet. The pair should qualify safely into next weekend’s final with Bombay Zero. There is no doubting Bombay Zero has pace, but he has missed the kick on his last two starts. He goes up well and with a better exit he could go around handy. He is still available at 20s and represents value. New Destiny is hard to oppose and should make a bold bid to make all.

In the first semi Droopys Clue looks the one to be on. An impressive winner when once again making all last week, the son of Out Of Range looks perfectly drawn on the inside of the other unbeaten runner in the race Wrighty and has a great chance to make all. The afore mentioned Wrighty has done little wrong and will punish any mistakes if the favorite is not on his A game. Of the remainder Coppice Warrior makes most appeal, he has run well in both previous rounds when runner-up behind New Destiny and can make his presence felt. The first semi is due of at 14:32 this Sunday afternoon live on RPGTV.

The supporting card at Towcester is also worth a look. Longacres Bullet goes in the 14:12 race over six bends. He ran well behind Romeo Turbo on his latest visit to the track a couple of weeks ago and has since won well at Monmore. He should take the stayer’s race.

At 16:08 there is a hot maiden over 500m where Hot Throttle can score. He was an eyecatcher when runner up behind Milton Bangon and is fancied to go one better. He had Aayamza Sydney behind him in that race and should confirm the form. Walk On Gaffer had some good form when trained in Ireland but will need to step up on his recent trial effort’s.

Sussex Cup at Hove

Three semi-finals of the Sussex Cup will headline the Hove card on Saturday where Fromposttopillar and Havana Bale Out will be looking to give Rab and Liz McNair a night to remember. The McNair’s are also represented by Queen Pink who runs in the first semi-final where she will be looking to make all. She was caught close home last weekend by the reopposing No Rush and the pair should dominate. No Rush just jets the nod from an ace draw out in six.

The second semi is due off at 20:38 and Havana Bale Out is one who divides opinion. On her day she is one of the fastest in training, but she can miss the start on occasions. She has been excellent in this competition thus far but may be worth taking on this weekend with King Stevens out in six. King Stevens has won two of his three starts around Hove and goes up strongly. If he were to lead and slip the field, he could be tough to peg back. Recent English Derby finalist Ninja Kerry is running as well as ever despite his advancing years and should be on the premises.

Speaking of greyhounds who divide opinion Fromposttopilar certainly falls into that category. A dog blessed with incredible pace he often gets himself into early trouble and leaves himself with plenty on at the halfway stage. He goes in the third semi at 21:12 but this galloping track should suit him better than Towcester and he is fancied to come through late and score at the expense of Droopys Google.

Irish Derby on The Horizon

The 2023 Irish Greyhound Derby starts next weekend (28th) at Shelbourne and the main participants are sowing their wellbeing in recent trial sessions. On Thursday Coolavanny Hoffa was the star of the session. Unlucky in last year’s derby when knocked out at the semi-final stage, Hoffa has been at stud since and hasn’t had a race since being eliminated in the derby semi last September. Running from trap five in a solo trial Hoffa covered the 525-yard trip in a blistering 27:94. I was present at the session, and he looked as though there may be better to come. The 14s was quickly snapped up and he is now a best priced 10/1 for the derby. Others to impress were Another Holiday (28:27) while over the 550 trip Undulation (29:69) and Burj Khalifa (29:77) also moved well. Later In the session Ballymac Finn caught the eye when stopping the clock in 18:44 for the 350.

Before racing on Friday Graham Holland has some of his stars in action. Swords Rex set a blistering gallop to halfway before fading on the run in to stop the clock in 28:48. Fastest of the session was Clona Duke who clocked a superb 28:06. Others to catch the eye were Mr Chelm who clocked 28:25 and Droopys Bro clocked 28:27. Clonbrien Treaty was fastest for the 550-yard trip with his 29:66 run while Romeo Magico and Bockos Crystal both clocked an identical 18:49 for the 350-yard trip.

THE ULTRA Thurs: Europa League Preview
DAQMAN Weds: Hereford NAP
DAQSTATS Weds: Hereford NAP
THE ULTRA Weds: Champions League Preview
PAT HEALY: Fastorslow fantastic at Punchestown
WEEK AHEAD: Champions League resumes
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