Dowl­ing dogs win three of seven King­dom Derby heats

The Kerryman (North Kerry) - - SPORT -

GET a good spon­sor, put up a de­cent pot for the win­ner, and you’ll al­ways score on the en­try front, es­pe­cially in an open sweep­stake.

The Tile­mas­ter King­dom Derby (win­ner, €7,500) has cer­tainly proved that at Tralee Track. A marvel­lous field of 42 went to traps in the open­ing round last Fri­day night, with top ken­nels from all over the coun­try rep­re­sented, and some marvel­lous rac­ing was pro­vided.

At this early stage, none other than Liam Dowl­ing holds the strong­est hand, for the very good rea­son that he won three of the seven first-round heats (with Bal­ly­mac An­ton, Akelawre and Ch­es­pir­ito). Every­body knows that there are no bound­aries to con­tain this man, at home or any­where else, and he could ac­tu­ally have pulled off a four-timer, with an­other of his charges, Bal­ly­mac Ta­bor, los­ing out by just a short head in the last of the seven first-round heats.

Mind you, two of Liam’s win­ners, Bal­ly­mac An­ton and Ch­es­pir­ito, had that short head to their ad­van­tage in their re­spec­tive heats, to show the very small mar­gins that can come into play in the track rac­ing game.

Bal­ly­mac An­ton ac­tu­ally won the first heat of the night and in clock­ing 28.47 (.10 slow) he short-headed the Gra­ham Hol­land-trained Ru­ral Vic. Akelawre im­me­di­ately fol­lowed up by win­ning heat 2 in a fastest of the night 28.39 and the tre­ble was com­pleted in heat 5 by Ch­es­pir­ito, which short-headed the Kieran Lynch­trained Glynnscross Jake in 28.54.

It’s a strong like­li­hood that Liam Dowl­ing will go on to win the sweep­stake, but that’s prob­a­bly as­sum­ing a lot con­sid­er­ing all the big hit­ters lined up against him. Fur­ther­more, 28 spots, or just four lengths, covered the win­ning times of all seven win­ners (28.39 to 28.67) and the only con­clu­sion to be drawn from that is that it is an ex­tremely open sweep­stake as well as be­ing a most com­pet­i­tive one.

Maybe things will be­come more clearcut when the four quar­ter-fi­nals are run off this Fri­day night. Maybe.

Any­way, Akelawre was the pick of the bunch last Fri­day night be­cause of his run of 28.39 and it is proper to high­light that. He was a 7/4 shot run­ning from trap 5 in heat 2 and, af­ter head­ing the front-run­ning Church­field Der (trap 1) round­ing the third bend, he went on to mas­ter him by two and a half lengths, with a neck back to Floury Spuds.

The even-money favourite, Pat Buck­ley’s Droopys Ney­mar, which ran from trap 4, was beaten into fifth place af­ter clock­ing 28.26 at the Oakview venue the pre­vi­ous Satur­day night, show­ing how hard it is to fol­low up one great run with an­other.

Aside from the three Dowl­ing win­ners, the other first-round win­ners were Glan­mire Dy­lan (28.51), Brave­heart Bobby (28.42), Misty Supreme (28.66) and Droopys Tone (28.67).

Misty Supreme, which is owned by John Houli­han, of Bal­ly­duff, kept the Kerry flag fly­ing well in heat 6 by beat­ing 1/2 favourite, Sky­walker Rafa, by a length and a half in 28.66.

The first three qual­i­fied in each of the seven heats plus the three fastest fourths and the draw for the quar­ter-fi­nals this Fri­day night re­sulted as fol­lows (trap or­der):

First quar­ter-fi­nal: Akelawre, Church­field Der, Glan­mire Dy­lan, Floury Spuds, Holy­cross Lad, Lemon Shane. Sec­ond quar­ter-fi­nal: Droopys Tone, God Of Fire, Boynepark King, Ru­ral Vic, Bal­ly­mac Ta­bor, Glymm­cross Jake (M). Third quar­ter-fi­nal: Lo­her Grove, Bal­ly­daniel Benz, Sky­walker Rafa, Bal­ly­mac An­ton, Cash Is King (W), Misty Supreme (W). Fourth quar­ter-fi­nal: Brave­heart Bobby, Saw­dust Club, Mill­ridge Blitz, Ch­es­pir­ito, Cosard Jet (W), Newinn Lester (W).

Other win­ners on Fri­day night: Conors Pick, 18.26; Yorkville Rosie, 17.97; Fives­tar Top­per, 17.63; Kil­la­han Azza, 29.44. The go­ing was .10 slow for all 525yds races and .05 slow for the three 325yds races.

SUN­DAY SIS SES­SION

WIDE seed, Hil­lview Paddy (5/2), was very much the star of the show at Sun­day evening’s SIS ses­sion at the Oakview venue, clock­ing a quite mag­nif­i­cent 28.52 on go­ing rated .10 slow in the sev­enth race (A1 525). Other win­ners: Spa An­gel, 29.27; Rigil Ken­tau­rus, 29.41; Mo­hane Rio, 28.99; Denville Gypsy, 29.20; Boom­town Getz, 29.44; Had­tobe Rory, 28.91; Anascaul Blackie, 29.51.

• A €1.00 quick pick won the €1,000 Tote Pick Six.

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