Racing was at Thurles on Saturday evening
It was a murky evening in Thurles but the racing was keen
A slow surface on a murky evening greeted competitors for the Saturday fixture at Thurles Greyhound Stadium but brightening the action with a fastest of the night performance over 525 yards was Tom White’s Bob The Lad (Droopys Jet-Liosgarbh Elsa) as he shed his maiden tag in impressive style.
The October 2018 youngster was having the fifth start of a career which had brought just a sole clear run as the Nenagh charge gave more than a hint of promise when second in A5 grade last month. Contesting at that same level, it was a sharper exit from trap 2 this time which saw him finally secure the racing daylight that had eluded him and when reaching the opening bend with a near length lead on the inside, he duly delivered on suspicion that he had much more to offer.
Extending around the bends, he was followed to the back straight by Rashersnatcher and though that rival gave game chase, Bob The Lad extended clear while impressive to the eye. Never seriously threatened in truth, the White youngster takes a significant upgrade for this maiden win having posted a smart 29.47 (-50) in a seven-length verdict over the strong staying Great Jet in second.
Unable it seems to run a poor race, Star Blake (Laughil Blake-Stuckeybawn) has proven a model of consistency for the Paddy Everard headed Amazing Four Syndicate and adding yet further to his immense likeability, scored back-to-back Thurles wins when claiming the night’s highest graded contest in typically brave fashion.
Rising to A1 for his latest A3 victory, he admirably coped with some higher graded rivals in the A0 525 when breaking well from trap 4, he vied for the lead on the run to the first bend. Ceding advantage of the inside to sharp early pacer Cabra Blitz however, Star Blake would reach the second turn with a length to recover on that rival.
Threatening when briefly joining the leader, the Everard charge found Cabra Blitz a tough opponent to contain when again ceding ground to the closing bends. Rallying however, from two lengths adrift, a sustained challenge in the home straight saw Star Blake wrestle the lead for his own when registering a most game one length verdict over the Scally charge as San Deni stayed stoutly just a shorthead further back in 29.48 (-50). A solid standard bearer at every turn, the winner has now won five of his nine race starts.
Rocket seals Hopeful Flanagan double
Rarely exiting a Thurles Saturday without return, trainer David Flanagan registered an impressive double this week with Timmy Moloney & Kurn Rushen’s Full Of Hope (Tullymurry Act-Congo Hope) returning from a four month absence if the full flush of health while claiming the night’s A2 525 contest in gutsy manner.
In a warm affair, it was the outside traps who dominated the early exchanges with Double Busy leading on the run to the bend but well away from trap 5, Full Of Hope kept pace with that rival around the turns before drawing to within a half length at the top of the back straight.
The pair fought out a tight tussle to the closing bends before the Flanagan charge began to draw clear into the home straight but he would be forced to repel the powerful finish of Stage Bobtheboss for a half-length verdict in 29.49 (-50) as Boyhero also closed in third. An impressive return to action, Full Of Hope will seek a 4-timer in his next outing.
The Flanagan double was completed in the concluding A3 525 as the Jack-Russell-Syndicate’s Killenaulerocket (Ballybough Mike-Jaytee Sahara) left a spell of indifferent form well behind when bouncing back to her best form for an eighth career win.
Breaking just off the pace from trap 2, she would track pacesetter Ascot Blake around the opening turns before just showing in second place ahead of Dashing King to the back straight. Remaining within a length of the lead to halfway, a brave effort on the inside at the third bend would ultimately secure the victory.
Striking the front, her strong running would see Killenaulerocket readily assert thereafter when drawing clear to a 4length winning margin in 29.53 (-50) as Ascot Blake repelled Dashing King for 2nd.
There was just a sole sprint contest on Saturday and reminding all that he retains plenty of his old spark into his fifth year, John Byrne & Eamon O'Brien’s Knocalton Guy (Cracking Man-Turbine Tulip) was another on winning ways when leading throughout the S2 330.
Swift to stride from trap 4, the Byrne trained veteran quickly established a one length lead and gamely defended that advantage to the bend while in advance of a tightly packed field. Totos Cottage and Borna Jack would turn closest to the July 2016 whelp but settling the race when extending to the home straight, Knockalton Guy completed in comfortable fashion. The twentieth win in his wonderful career saw him with two and a half lengths in hand over Borna Jack in 18.02 (-20).
Next best over 525 yards on the night, John McKenna’s Rossestown Will (Laughil Blake-Scullys Flo) displayed smart improvement for the experienced gained in his Sept debut when dominating the night’s A8 event.
Quick to stride from trap 3, superior early dash saw the February 2019 pup with a decisive lead to the opening turn and the race was as good as settled when streaking clear of Hack Up Sparta to the back straight. Never sighting a rival, Rossestown Will left a very pleasing impression on his way to a facile11 length victory over Montore Saoirse in 29.61 (-50).
There was just a sole novice race on Saturday and there was much to enthuse about in the game debut victory of Eddie Ryan’s Moneygall Bounce (Romeo Recruit-Bull Run Spice) as the April 2019 pup battled bravely before settling the race at halfway.
Moderately to stride from trap 4, it was Monadreen Pearl who made the best of the start on the outside but showing smart early dash, the Ryan pup would outpace rivals to his inside while almost joining the leader on the inside when tackling the opening bends.
The pair raced almost neck and neck to the midway point but an extra turn of back straight pace saw Moneygall Bounce hit the front and he would turn a one length third bend lead into a three-length victory over that same rival when staying stoutly in 29.86 (-50).
Rounding-up the Saturday action, the night commenced with victory for Paddy Clancy’s Rosmult Logan (Tarsna Havana-Rosmult Martha) as a sole debutant in the A5 525. Showing early pace to secure a rails pitch at the first bend, he used his position to smart effect when skipping clear to the back straight on the inside. Reaching his two-length winning margin before halfway, he registered 29.95 (-50) in advance of Mons Grove and looks well graded in A4 next time.
Having scored an overdue first race win in A5 last time, the following A4 525 saw Brigid Rafter’s Delta Work (Over Limit-Boozed Bubble) continue her progression when ably coping with her upgrade in another strong running display.
Tight for room on the inside at the opening bends, she reached the back straight with over five lengths to recover on pacesetter Oakvale Bear but again confirmed her prowess beyond halfway when reducing her arrears to the closing bends. A powerful and sustained effort saw Delta Work draw ever closer on the run to the line before gaining a thrilling verdict by three quarters of a length, posting 29.88 (-50) over a gallant Oakvale Bear.
The remaining A7 contest over 525 yards proved a straightforward mission in the first career win for Denis Ryan’s Freedom Press (Clonbrien Hero-Mustang Temora). Shedding her maiden tag at the second time of asking, she confirmed the early pace shown on debut when taking a one length lead to the opening bend before streaking clear to the back straight. Never seriously threatened thereafter, she held four lengths over Deecee Farloe in 29.90 (-50).