“She’s still maturing, but just keeps improving each time she ventures to the track and should go well in the final.” Donlon said.
The maiden final is for bitches only, with runners qualifying from three heats which were run last Wednesday night.
Donlon said that he has had to race Bowstreet Mariah sparingly, as she had some nagging injury problems early in her career.
The daughter of Elite State has been racing in terrific heart, and broke through for a hard earned victory to qualify for the 450 metre final.
Bowstreet Mariah led from start to finish last week, and never gave her rivals a chance.
She ran the fastest first split from Box 7, but will exit Box 6 in the final.
The generally awkward draw for most greyhounds doesn’t perturb her veteran trainer.
“She has been beginning well from the boxes and runs straight in her races, so the box draw should not trouble her.”
“Hopefully she can lead, and then it will be up to the opposition to catch her.”
Donlon believes the Scott Holmes trained Assassin’s Drill, and the Graham Laidley trained Star Chic to be the hardest to beat in the final.
Assassin’s Drill made a slashing debut with an all the way win in the fastest heat winning time last week.
Although drawn awkwardly in Box 4, she is sure to be further improved by the race experience.
Star Chic has drawn favorably in Box 1, and is also sure to have plenty of admirers.
Bowstreet Mariah was bred by a friend of Donlon’s, and was purchased and is raced by his wife Sheila.
Donlon said that his wife is an integral part of their small greyhound kennel, as she helps out not only at home with the dogs, but also on race nights.
Meanwhile, reinging Great Chase winner Pharoah King from the Colin Brennan kennel will make his long awaited return to the track.
Pharoah King has not raced since winning the Group 2 final in November, where he sustained a stress fracture injury.
Brennan has nursed the champion back from injury, and is hopeful of a successful return in the SEM Fire & Rescue Social Club Mixed Grade 3/4 over 450 metres.
There are a number of chances in the race which include Fidel Bale who has won four of his last five starts, and the ultra consistent Parracryl.
Add to this the reigning Top Gun winner Regal Thyme, and the race is one which all enthusiasts should venture out to the track to see.