Bigmike Still The Dog To Beat

Ballymac Bigmike tasted defeat for the first time in ten races last Friday night when he was over turned by the Brendan Duffy owned and trained Laughil Ace.

Irish Sprint Cup
Going to traps the red hot 1/4 favourite in this four dog race, Bigmike missed the start by his standard as Laughil got off to one of his better starts on the inside and took the lead on the run to the corner (7.18 sectional).

The closer they got to the first turn the more these runners bunched up, Laughil showed courage to hold his place on the inside running fence around the first turn. He used the rail to his advantage as he kicked on from turn two to stay on strong opening up a 3.75l advantage on the run to the line stopping the clock in 21.42. Ballymac held on for second by a short head in front of the fast finishing Conors Jay. Last year’s winner Slipalong Hero was a noticeable absentee from this heat.

Local favourite Maytown Flavour was the fastest heat winner on the night for Peadar Woods. He recorded his 14th victory of his career all of which have been at Dundalk. He is the only unbeaten runner in this year’s classic and it will be no surprise to see him make the final with the draw he has next week.

Maytown came out of the boxes running last week as he made all in his heat (7.17 sectional). Running down the far side on the outside he held just enough of an advantage to chop the nose off Drumcrow William who was stuck to the fence. This was the winning move of the race for Maytown who never lost momentum going on to score by 1.25l from the fast finishing Lenson Rocky in second and the unlucky Drumcrow William back in third. 21.25 was the winning time.

Nothing To Hide
John McGee is no stranger to success in this particular competition (won it in 2009 with Inny Blue) and he has a nice type on his hands in the shape of Nothing To Hide. The youngster of the party was recording only his second victory in what looked a very decent field. For a dog so young he showed incredible guts to hold his place on around the first two corners against some well-established trackers.

Alfies Diamond ran an eye-catching race in second place here after losing his back legs between the two bends, this lad has a similar style of running as his litter brother Lenson Rockey. The second half of this sprint seems to be his favourite. Only a short head separated Nothing To Hide and Alfies Diamond when they reached the judge in 21.27. The well gambled on Tiernans Gift kept on for third.

Scot In Form
Robert Gleeson didn’t leave Dundalk empty handed last week as Toolmakers Scot battled hard up the home straight to snatch victory. Scot came into this competition without a look around the track as he just contested the final of the William Hill Classic only four days before the stake started.

He still hasn’t adapted to the traps here in Dundalk so there is a huge run in this lad somewhere, trapping usually is his forte so just be patient. His sectionals to the corner have been very average so far compared to some of the others remaining in the competition. He only went to the corner a bad third behind the fast starting Catunda Dubai but tracked the leader beautifully up the home straight.

I’ve always had Scot down as a dead railer but this week he made his move down the outside. Catunda began to look vulnerable up front as Scot was wearing him down with every stride approaching the winning line. Scot was the first to break the beam in a decent 21.33 3/4 of a length of Catunda Dubai in second and Rosmon Josh in third.

Bigmike Will Be Back
Ballymac Bigmike is certain to go to traps a red hot favourite for the opening semi-final on Friday night.

He can be forgiven his last run and get back to winning ways.

Alfies Diamond can chase him home. Lenson Rocky and Toolmakers Scott can battle it out in the second semi-final.

Rocky has the benefit of the inside draw but doesn’t have the early pace of Scot. If he can handle trap five I think he can provide his trainer Robert Gleeson with a semi-final double.

BoyleSports Irish Greyhound Derby
The betting for the Derby is beginning to take shape as we get closer to kick off. Entries close this Saturday night and a full entry is expected.

Clares Rocket showed us exactly why he is so short in the ante-post betting for Derby glory (5/1) as he blitzed his rivals yet again in the final of the Champion Stakes last Saturday night.

Going to traps a red hot 1/6 favourite after the withdrawal of his kennel mate Highview Event, Rocket went through the gears as smooth as you like and opened up quickly on the run to the bend to go clear of the chasing pack.

Droopys Awesome turned down the back straight in second position after the three runners on his outside were involved in trouble on the run to the bend. Swords Ace turned left and barged his way in the whole way to the bend. Awesome is one of the strongest runners in the country so the Rocket needed to bring his A-game to the party. And boy did he, try as he may Awesome closed the gap slightly but could never get to the leader.

Rocket crossed the line two and a half lengths in front in a sparkling 29.29. The eye catching thing for me was that Awesome never got to Clares Rocket the whole way to the drop. Have no doubts about this lads stamina. His only worry is if he gets challenged on the run to the corner, but looking at the top end of the Derby market there is a serious lack of top class early pace so he should be fine.

Rural Hawaii
On the undercard last Saturday night I would advise anyone who didn’t see it to look at race 11. Rural Hawaii won the race in 29.78 but the eye catcher was without doubt the lady in trap 2. She put in an unbelievable performance to only be beaten by less than three lengths, she was practically stopped around the first bend but regathered herself quickly and stayed on like an express train. The runners she was gaining on are out and out stayers which makes the run more special. She’s only a September ’14 so has a serious future ahead of her.

The draw for the Derby will take place Monday morning in the Oaks suit in Shelbourne Park, we hope to have the heats and a number of specials priced up on Monday evening. There is a few early UK entries which brings a bit of an International flavour to it. Updated betting can be viewed on or call into any one of our shops nationwide. As it stands Clares Rocket is by far the biggest loser we have in our book.