The Ladbrokes Irish Derby moves a step further tonight with eight more first round heats at Shelbourne and this session will see the majority of the very strong Dolores Ruth team swinging into action.
She has no fewer than six runners in action tonight and she has realistic hopes of having at least four victories. One would have to fancy Razldazl Bugatti, Cuil Cougar, Razldazl Jayfkay and Razldazl Rioga, while Razldazl Apollo and Razldazl Dynamite are other strong hopes.
Razldazl Jayfkay is probably the night’s banker bet in heat 11 where Jayfkay should lead up from the six box and go on to win from Tyrur Micko and Star Head.
Razldazl Bugatti will need to do everything right in a very hot heat 8 where Cabra Millie, Power Of God and Newlawn Tock provide very formidable opposition. However, the early pace of Bugatti should see him prevail.
There is a tasty entry for heat 10 where the Ruth runner is Cuil Cougar who returned to top form last time and may foil the early paced International winner Quail Hollow and thepromising puppy Tyrur Sugar Ray.
The Ruth four-timer can come courtesy of Laurels winner Razldazl Rioga in heat 13.
In the opening heat Pat Buckley’s Dragon Shield gets the vote over Razldazl Apollo and Scottish Derby winner Barefoot Allstar.
Owen McKenna’s Confident Rankin is the selection in a hot heat 9 where Tynwald Bolt and Tyrur Willyjoe are very formidable rivals.
John Linehan unleashes the first of his big guns in heat 12 where veteran Broadstrand Lad returns to the track and could have quite a battle with Rockchase Bullet. That leaves us with heat 14 where another great veteran Tyrur Big Mike is nominated to lead home Laughil Billy.
The remaining eight heats will be run on Saturday and on that night the Bar One Racing Irish Sprint Cup quarter finals will be run at Dundalk. Robert Gleeson’s Kildallon Ranger was in top form last weekend and can lead home Knockglass Billy in the opening heat.
The big three in Heat 2 appear to be Millbankscarface, Hather Ski and Town Ruffian, while Coolykereen Imp’s absence from heat 3 can clear the way for Malouda and Piercestown Con to battle it out. The final heat will see popular support for Maytown Ruler and Tahina Rocco, but Graham Holland’s Cambushmore will be a danger to both.
Apart from all that classic action, there is plenty of big activity elsewhere with the first of the finals scheduled for Galway this evening where Oran Style will be a big fancy to win the Flaherty Markets Corrib Plate for Des and Elliott Whyte. Ger Holian’s Successor looks the main threat. Then tomorrow it will be the turn of the Paddy Byrne Memorial at Tralee where my original selection Ask Patsy remains the selection. Pa Fitzgerald’s charge is developing into a classy tracker and he may have the legs of Pat O’Connor’s Dims His Eyes.
Tomorrow’s card will include the Christy Smith Buster final which is being run in aid of Palliative Care, Tralee. There will be plenty of spot prizes and live music and midnight café.
Also tomorrow the final of the Greyhound & Pet World Puppy Oaks will be run at Harold’s Cross and here it is a case of Ruairi Dwan’s Borna Gem getting a trouble-free run. If she does, she wins, it’s as simple as that. If not, then Blue Chicago or Kilcar Lassie might benefit.
Then on Sunday the attention will switch to Thurles where that great old traditional event the Thurles Fresh Milk Tipperary Cup will reach a conclusion. The card will go off at 8pm to facilitate those travelling from the Galway Races and there is a very open final, with Boherna House quoted favourite by track layer Ted Browne and with Tarbrook Tornado and St Louis Charlie drawn to run big races.
Paul Dillon’s Bua Tommy was the fastest semi-final winner, while Rackethall Woods and Shaneboy Spencer will be flying to the bend. Boherna may take the top prize of €9,000. It will be an excellent card and there should be a smashing turn-out. There will be no racing tomorrow night with that meeting being shifted to Sunday.
The Irish & European A2 will commence at Curraheen on Saturday and then next week’s Burgess and GOBA Specials will be for Mini Open and Open 550 respectively.
The Supporters’ Club August Festival kicks off this weekend at Waterford with heats of the Jack Fitzgerald Memorial Unraced, the Lisnakill Kennels A4 575 and the John Duggan Memorial A3 Tri-Distance while another four will commence next week.
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