GREYHOUND PREVIEW: Round two of the (Boylesports) Irish Greyhound Derby continues this weekend. Eight heats on Friday and eight heats on Saturday. The best of the action previewed.
Hoffa Heads the Market as we Enter Round Two
Coolavanny Hoffa cast any doubts about his wellbeing aside in a recent trial outing at Shelbourne Park, but it was stunning to see the brilliant blue back to his very best when he was a wide margin winner of his first race in almost ten months. After an average start by his standards, Hoffa got the better of Chequeforsir on the run to the corner and ran out a facile winner in 29:47. Another Holiday was the fastest of the first-round winners when stopping the clock in 29:23. Good Maestro was the fastest of Friday nights heat winners when he recorded a personal best of 29:24. The big casualty of the weekend was Swords Rex who stumbled badly at the start and lost all chance while 2022 Derby champion Born Warrior also made his exit in the opening round. Ninety-six runners remain in round two. Eight heats will take place on Friday with the concluding eight due to be run on Saturday night. Let’s look at some of the best action from the second round.
Friday August 4th
Heat two of the second round is for many the heat of the weekend. Clona Duke is currently around even money to make it two from two in this year’s Derby. He has an ace draw on the fence but faces some strong opposition. Mr Chelm returned to Peter Cronin after an underwhelming spell in the UK and he showed much improved form when runner up behind Well Met last Friday night. You would expect him to come on again for that outing and he’s not without a chance. Deadly Showtime got the better of Annagh Bailey in a great tussle last week and the pair meet once again in this heat. Last years English Derby Champion Romeo Magico is still running as well as ever and can get involved if making one of his better starts. It may be worth just giving Mr Chelm the vote. He can go up stronger than last time and should improve with that outing under his belt.
Bobsleigh Dream has once again been done no favors with the trap draw. She runs from trap four and will seek the inside on the run to the corner. She should have to much early zip for Garfiney Blaze in three and if she can get a clear run behind the likely pace setters Well Met and Beepers Lariat, she could run them down late. Beepers Lariat ran a big race last week when just caught close home by Ballymac Johnjo but may find Well Met a thorn in his side on the run to the corner. There is a big lack of early pace in heat four and Ballymac Walt is strongly fancied to make all from trap five. Pat Guilfoyle’s pair of Scaglietti and Good Maestro should dominate heat six. Ballymac Finn is an absentee in this heat and his trap will remain vacant, Good Maestro was impressive last weekend and has scope to improve further. Ballyhimikin Rex should have a role to play from trap one. Ballinabola Ed will be hard to beat in heat six. De Lahdedah won well last weekend, but the draw hasn’t been to kind to Liam Dowling’s runner. Ed should take this with a level break. Storys Cashout really caught the eye last time out when flying home behind The Other Kobe. If he can hold Threesixfive to the corner, he can use his big finishing kick to good effect and get to the front on the run for home.
Saturday August 5th
Michael J O Donovan has his dogs running at the top of their game right now and his pair of Ryhope Beach and Stonepark Syd will be very popular in the opening heat on Saturday. Ryhope Beach looked sensational to the eye last time out when winning by fifteen and a half lengths. The track was on the slow side in my opinion and if he can come away from boxes in similar fashion, he will be impossible to contain. Sober Glory lost a couple of lengths in running last weekend and he done well in the circumstances to reel in Tommys Hewick in the shadow of the post. Slight preference is just for Sober Glory to improve on last week’s effort. Race four on the card is heat number twelve and what a contest we have in store. Two of Irelands very fastest line up side by side with Another Holiday in one and The Other Kobe in two. These two have cracking early pace and it will be a real buckle between the duo for early supremacy, On the draw I will just side with Another Holiday with Optic Chico expected to be coming home best of all. Pape Di Oro should lead up the outside runners and will take advantage if the inside duo slip up. Coolavanny Hoffa will once again be long odds on to win heat fourteen and it should be plain sailing for the ante post favorite. On to heat fifteen and I still think there is better to come from Ballymun Boy in trap two. He will need a PB effort if he is to get the better of Raha Mofo. Ben’s Teddy was another to catch the eye last weekend he will be flying home from halfway.
Weekend’s Best Bets
Shelbourne Park Friday
Ballymac Walt: Three Units Win
Ballymun Boy: One Unit Win