Skywalker Barry got up in the dying strides to nab kennel companion Serene Ace in a thrilling finish to land the 2022 RCETS Gold Cup at Shelbourne Park last Saturday night.
The brilliant son of Droopys Jet has now taken his career earnings to over AU$110,000. Skywalker Barry took a flier from trap one and led in the early yards before kennel mate Serene Ace showed his usual blistering early pace. Serene Ace led by three lengths as they approached the third bend, but Skywalker Barry hadn’t given up the chase and as they turned for home the gap was down to two lengths and diminishing rapidly.
Skywalker Barry joined Serene Ace with 20 yards to go and got on top in the shadow of the post to win by a head in 28:36. Serene Ace ran a blinder in second but just struggled to see out the trip.
Favourite Good Cody wasn’t as quick away as last time and as we pointed out in last week’s piece, he was always likely to struggle once headed.
Knight Tornado ran well back in third, but he’s much better off at the front, while Macho Pride led home Good Cody to take fourth.
Unfortunately, Storys Direct was reported lame during the week and didn’t take his place.
You can be sure most if not all the finalists will be aimed at the upcoming Bresbet Easter Cup which starts Saturday February 19. Current Oaks/Derby champion Susie Sapphire is another who is being aimed at the Easter cup and she makes her eagerly awaited comeback this Saturday night in a red-hot contest over 480 meters.
The superstar bitch has already accumulated over Au$250,000 in her career to date, but she faces a tough assignment from box three and it is worth noting she has never won when wearing the white jacket from four attempts.
The opposition on Saturday includes Irish Laurels winner One Time Only (T2), Produce Stakes runner up Valegro (T6), as well as Romeo Magico (T1) Russmur Pat (T4) and Fast Fit Paddy (T5).
Another Derby finalist Jackslittlething also returns to Shelbourne Park for the first time this year. There is plenty of talent on show as Ireland’s best warm up for a crack at the upcoming Easter Cup.
Swords Rex wins Rural Kennels Unraced ON2/ON3
Swords Rex held off Droopys Nice One in a gripping final at Clonmel on Sunday night when he was triumphant in the Rural Kennels unraced ON2/ON3.
The Barbra Lowndes owned July 20 youngster was well away from box two and built up a three-length lead over main market rival Droopys Nice One as they raced past halfway.
Approaching the final bend it was obvious Droopys Nice One was closing rapidly and looked a likely winner, however Swords Rex ran a perfect fourth bend sticking tight to the rails and he held on by a short head from Droopys Nice One in 28:28.
Blueway Best was a long way back in third. Congratulations to trainer Graham Holland who has now landed this event for the third year on the spin.
On the undercard, Carrauntoohil was an impressive winner for Karol Ramsbottom. We saw this youngster win at the winter racing festival at Shelbourne Park last December and he’s one to keep an eye on this year.
Another Successful Coursing Meeting
The unique 2022 Clonmel coursing meeting held its finals day on Monday and the four-day meeting was another success. Approximately 60,000 people attended the festival this year which was run over four days due to no meeting taking place last year because of covid restrictions.
There were six stakes over the weekend and the winners are as follows:
- Champion Bitch Stakes: Shes Invincible (Adios Alonso – Woodpark Fever)
- Champion Dogs Stakes: Tree Top Danno (Newinn Wonder – Tanyard Rena)
- Oaks (2019 whelps): Ballymac Floral (Newinn Wonder – Ballymac Town)
- Derby (2019 whelps): On My Terms (Adios Alonso – Handsoffshesmine)
- Oaks (2020 whelps): Tactical (Silent Whisper- Mungos Cutlet)
- Derby (2020 whelps): Annual Fergie (Mafi Magic – Amelies Millie)
Night Time Danny quickest in Golden Jacket heats
Night Time Danny was the quickest on the clock as the Premier Greyhound Racing Golden Jacket kicked off last Saturday morning. The son of Sh Avatar was an impressive winner of his heat stopping the clock in 45:22 for the 714m trip.
Our Ante post selection Warzone Tom won his heat in 45:55 and is drawn against Night Time Danny is this Saturdays semi-final, however Warzone Tom has the better early pace and if trapping level should build up a sizeable lead and book his place in the decider.
Burgess Elite is one to focus on in the third semi-final, he has a decent chance to steal a march on main market rivals Bellmore Sally and Azamya Dream, if doing so he would be hard to contain.
All this Saturday’s action can be streamed live on sportystuff.tv from 11am UK time.
The Northern Puppy Derby final takes place at Newcastle next Tuesday evening. Havana Bale Out (Magical Bale) and Mickys Barrett (Out of Range) are vying for favouritism after their facile semi-final victories. Mickys Barrett has won his last seven starts and at $2.90 with online bookmakers looks the one to be on.
Havana Bale Out is a bitch with a huge future but may have to concede first run to Mickys Barrett and she can ill afford to give her main rival too much rope.
Suffolk Downs Up and Running
Suffolk Downs reopened its door after almost 5 five years away last Tuesday when they staged a 10 race card. Track promotor Kevin Boothby was pleased with how the opening day went.
“We have other tracks so we know what we are doing but you are always a little apprehensive, however I’m delighted,” he said.
“We had a winner come out of every box and all the dogs have come back safe and sound.
“We have made the kennels to a high standard and ensured the track is as safe as possible.
“It has been a bit of a challenge and we are probably two months behind where we wanted to be, but the main thing was to make sure it was done properly.”
Suffolk Downs will start by racing Monday, Tuesday and Friday mornings and we wish them all the very best in the future.
Barry Caul’s weekend best bets
- Crayford Saturday: Burgess Elite 12:37 (UK time) One unit win
- Shelbourne Saturday: Danger Close 20:27 One unit win