Good News All Round
Breeder John Kennedy has enjoyed great success over the past three or four years from his base in Kilkenny but I think he has produced his best performer to date in the shape of Good News.
This son of Definite Opinion first came to our attention when he qualified to race on the July 23rd in 28.23. From here his career took off! The only blemish on his card so far is when he got knocked over in an Open 525, the night of the Leger final. He remains the only unbeaten runner heading into next week’s semi-final after his flawless display last time in 28.13.
Drawn in trap one he immediately moved out to his right hand side after a flying start and led to the corner from Droopys Wilbury in second position. The order remained the same throughout as Good News crossed the line four lengths clear of Wilbury in second and Drive On Tipp back in third.
Marginally next best on the clock was the Peter Cronin trained Swithins Brae who bounced back to winning ways after a below par run the week before. After a level break, his early pace carried him to the front before crossing the winning line first time round.
He was edging left on the run up and just managed to clear the field without too much trouble. Off the second bend he drew further and further clear of the field and stopped the clock in 28.24, seven lengths clear of Jaytee Samurai in second and Viber back in third.
Bull Run Bolt
Bull Run Bolt gained his first win around HQ on Saturday night. He has been very unlucky on a few occasions but got his due rewards last week winning in 28.27. This wide running son of Lenson Bolt went up strong to the corner and turned the second bend just off the pace.
With a clear run on the outside there was only going to be one winner from here. Bolt really turned on the style and ran out a three and a half-length winner over the lightly raced Tyrur Hugo in second position and Graceful Trend back in third.
Fastest second round winner Hot Trend had to really work hard for the win this week. After a slow start he took a right thump off Droopys Almond just after the break which left him in a small bit of bother.
Michelito was setting a strong gallop out front around bends one and two and towed them down the far side. Hot Trend at this stage was after making up a fair bit of ground and found himself in second place passing the 750 boxes and was just off the leader. Running a beautiful third bend from the outside he shot to the front ahead of Michelito and kept on well to score in 28.52.
Droopys Almond kept on well for third after the trouble out of the boxes. The draw for the semi-finals next week sees three of the big guns clash in the second heat. Hot Trend, Good News and Bull Run Bolt will be battling it out for the qualifying positions.
The first semi-final looks to be a match between Puppy Derby hero Droopys Wilbury and Swithins Brae.
No one can afford any mistakes this weekend.
The youngest lady in the Christmas Oaks turned out to be the most impressive in last week’s quarter finals. Coolavanny Pet is only an April ‘15 whelp but she showed no signs of being green as she scorched around in 28.22 recording the third win of her short career.
Ballinakill Clare ran on well to finish second here for Graham Holland with Tyrur Blondie back in third. Droopys Harbour showed us that her first round win was no fluke as she blew her rivals away in 28.38 for John Linehan and the Blarney-Racing Syndicate. She led all in this heat holding off the fast finishing Airmount Tess and Tyrur Gene.
Oaks queen Witches Belle returned to winning form again when taking the second quarter final in 28.48.
Witches had to work hard to overtake Ballymac Belle up the home straight but eventually came home two lengths clear. This win will do her confidence the world of good! Kilgraney June took the opening heat on the night for the Buggy family. This daughter of Scolari Me Daddy led all to run out a five length winner from Slippery Thelma in 28.53. The semi-finals take place on a fantastic card next Saturday night.
Mozart Can Hit Right Note In Newcastlewest
Kyle Mozart can claim his second win of the season in the prestigious Munster Cup at Newcastlewest this weekend. After blowing his rivals away last time out in Ballyduff he can kick six more champion stakes points over the crossbar. His biggest rival will be the Mossy O’Connor trained Octane Wonder.
These two met before in the final of the dog trial stake in Abbeyfeale last year with Octane coming out on top. This is Octane’s first run of the season so it will be interesting to see how he goes. Mozart gets the verdict to make it one all between the two should they clash in the semi-final.
The battle at the top of the draw can be between Killeagh Sunny and Bridewell Adios. Killeagh was running well in Kilflynn before he had to be taken out. If he is back to his best he can make his way to the decider. Mozart gets the confident vote for outright glory!
Chubbys Ruby was foot perfect in her All Age Bitch Stake win In Kilsheelan three weeks ago and she can double up here in Newcastlewest. Ruby is held in the highest regard by her shrewd connections and there is further improvement in this lady. She is nicely placed in the top half of the draw. Central Majestic can be her main stumbling block!
At the bottom Laurdella Dani looks the one to beat. She was unlucky not to collect in Killimer recently so will be gunning for the win here. The clock watchers will be keeping an eye on the two trial stake winners in the line-up, Delightful Lola (Fermoy) and Our Miztique (Regional).
If either of these two can keep in with Dani, it will enhance their Oaks chances. We will side with Chubbys for the win and this could put her in the frame for the Champion Bitch Stake in Clonmel.
The value bet of the weekend for me is Bonding Session.
He has run well in Ennis and Nenagh so far this season and this field in Gorey will really suit his style of running. He should meet his biggest danger in round two, Hilark James. He collected in Enniscorthy already so is gasping for more Champion Stakes points. Bonding Session might just have too much early for him and will be meeting him at the right time!