Murnane appointed Chief Financial Officer

JUST days into the New Year and already we have the draw for the first major open track event of the year, the Tyrur Kennels Open 575 which will kick-off at Shelbourne tonight.

Racing will resume at Shelbourne this evening but the big boys (and some girls) will be back in action in the first round of this €10,000 to the winner feature on Saturday.

It has ended up as a 36-runner event and the draw has thrown up some very interesting clashes.

One of the most interesting heats will be Heat 3 where Martinstown Snow will be opposed by Tyrur Domingo, Lemon Velvet and Croom Star. Ollie Bray’s Royal Patrol is a possible ante-post favourite and he will have Ohio Rumble, Incitatus, Olympic Rockstar and the sponsor’s flying bitch Tyrur Monica among his rivals. It’s going to be an exciting start to the year at Shelbourne with the first round of the 48-dog €7,500 Joe Dunne Memorial Puppy 525 (February 2010) on Saturday 21st. Commencing on Saturday week will be the 12 dog €1,000 Shelbourne Open 550 and also that night there will be a one-off €400 A1 Puppy (Feb ‘10) 525.

With no Wednesday racing for the months of January and February, there will also be strong Thursday cards at Shelbourne. Next Thursday’s meeting, for instance, will include a €500 Open 750, a €350 A2 Puppy (Feb ‘10) 525 and heats of a 24 dog €1,000 A2 (Bg) 525 and a 12 dog €500 A4 525.

The Irish Greyhound Board has announced its first appointment of 2012 with Michael Murnane named as the new Chief Financial Officer and he will take up his position on January 30th.

He joins the IGB from his current role as Financial Controller at Adare Manor and Golf Resort. Previous to this Murnane was Audit Manager at Grant Thornton Chartered Accountants and Auditors based in Limerick.

IGB CEO Adrian Neilan said Murnane has relevant senior management, commercial and project delivery experience at a senior leadership level in both the hotel and leisure industry and in accountancy practice that match well the strategic, financial, business growth and compliance requirements of the greyhound industry.

Now that we are into the New Year, thoughts immediately shift to the future and, in particular, the young stars that will be unearthed in the coming months. Hopefully, some big names will emerge from the Festival Unraced Stake which commenced last weekend at Clonmel and will continue with six second round heats on Sunday.

County Limerick owner Declan Moloney got the year off to a great start when he ran three pups in the first round and ended up with two winners and a second. They are members of the May ‘10 litter by Brett Lee out of Saritamer and the star performer was Pagani as he won most impressively by seven lengths in 28.71. Delonte came through late to win in 29.05 while Nastasi was beaten two lengths by Frances O’Donnell’s Skip Soda in 28.81.

Others to catch the eye were Graham Holland’s Jacobs Courage in 28.95 and Owen McKenna’s Confident Rankin in 28.98. Pagani will meet fellow heat winners Shaneboy Allen and Blue Ranger in Heat 4 where Blackstone Buzz will be another fancied contender.

Racing resumes at the Kingdom Stadium with racing tomorrow and Saturday and this will be the format for January, with 12 races each night. Qualifying trials will resume next Monday at 10.30am with the unrecorded trials at the normal times. The John & Mary (Killeacle) Dowling Memorial A1 570 for 48 dogs will start on Friday, February 3rd.

The big early season event at Curraheen Park is the Guinness Trophy and this will be the 48th staging of the A1 (Bg) event which will have a winner’s prize of €3,000 and will commence on Saturday, January 28th. Entries will close tomorrow for the 24 dog €1,000 A5 (Bg) 525.

The first sales of the year at Curraheen will be staged on Tuesday, March 20th and entries are already being accepted. Official trials will be staged tomorrow after racing and again on Tuesdays between 11.30am and 12.30pm. Unrecorded trials will be run on Tuesdays between 8.30 and 10.45 and again between 4pm and 8pm and then on Fridays between 9am and 11am.

News from Clonmel is that the €1,905 John Mitchell A0/A1 525 will now commence on January 19th due to entries coming in very slowly for the 36-dog event which is jointly supported by the Track Supporters Club. The build up for the National Meeting Festival has already commenced and two stakes coming up shortly are the 36-dog €1,905 Sporting Press A1 575 (starting January 12th) and the 24-dog €1,500 Broadway Pet Foods A0/A1 Stake (January 15th).

Remaining in Munster, the Suirview Kennels Festival of Racing will commence at Kilcohan Park on Saturday week and the finals of the five separate 12-dog stakes will be run on the gala finals night on Saturday, January 28th. Starting on Saturday week will be the €1,000 A1 (Bg) 525 and the €1,000 A3 (A2 Bg only) 525. Then starting on Saturday 21st will be the €1,000 A4 (A3 Bg only) 525, the €1,000 A2 (Bg) 525 and the €1,000 A5 (A4 Bg only) 525. All stakes are confined to greyhounds that have had at least two races around Waterford.

The draw for the Tyrur Kennels Open 575 at Shelbourne on Saturday is:

Heat 1: 1 Tyrur Babylon; 2 Christys Bell; 3 Holly Wood (m); 4 Greenwell Hawk (m); 5 Sawdust Terry (w); 6 Dun Masc (w).

Heat 2: 1 Lewcas Thunder; 2 Kilmacar Nick; 3 Croom Upper; 4 Hillcroft Joe; 5 Barefoot Machine (m); 6 Tyrur Columbo (w).

Heat 3: 1 Croom Star; 2 Lemon Velvet; 3 Tyrur Domingo; 4 Ravenswood Joey; 5 Martinstown Snow (m); 6 O Garney Patch (m).

Heat 4: 1 Spot The Hawk; 2 Broadstrand Lad; 3 Barntick Petal (m); 4 Money Go Easy (m); 5 Fatboyz Tyson (m); 6 Tyrur Willyjoe (w).

Heat 5: 1 Ohio Rumble; 2 Olympic Rockstar; 3 Incitatus; 4 Glenanore; 5 Tyrur Monica (m); 6 Royal Patrol (w).

Heat 6: 1 Coolavanny Shine; 2 Big Bam; 3 Tibetan Skies; 4 Tyrur Sycamore; 5 Piercestown West; 6 Gizmo Titan (w).

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