Disappointing for the Lennon family, Kilkenny who have had to withdraw both of their runners from tomorrow’s Irish Cup meeting due to kennel sickness. Go Usain Bolt was due to meet Ivy Hill Time in the second quarter of the Irish Cup and the much fancied Tilly The Tank was in the first course of the Patsy Byrne Select Bitch Stake against Chubbys Ruby. We now have three non-runners in the Irish Cup which means RES C Isle Of Destiny will be called in as will the first reserve in the bitch stake, Madonna.
The action gets underway at 11.00am and don’t be late because the favourite and second favourite are running in the first four courses !!
There are two official non-runners in the 2017 Irish Cup which gets underway tomorrow, Friday 24th February at Patrickswell, Dillrock Mick which was due to meet Domain King in the third quarter and Manntan Manor which was due to meet Battleoftheboyne in the very last course. The first two reserves are Needham Frankel from the Brendan Matthews kennel and the pup Kyle Alex owned by Marie Field. Both of these subs ran very well in Tubbercurry back in January and are more than capable of making an impression over the coming weekend.
The pre-Irish Cup issue of the Sporting Press is on sale from today (Wednesday) and Tony O’Connor plumps for Octane Wonder to make it a second Classic for this season’s big Abbeyfeale winners. Corn Na Feile Puppy Stake winner Reikers Island divided the Derby with his litter brother and now the form of the Corn Na Feile All Age will be put to the test. Octane Wonder of course was the winner and by a remarkable coincidence he now meets the dog he defeated in that Abbeyfeale final, Kyle Mozart, in the first round of the Irish Cup. Other dogs tipped on this week’s Sporting Press include Skellig Shane, Hold Firm, Domain King, Balleen Voyager, Serene Angel, Alcar, Foot Solution, Drive On Smokey, Portane Ash, Tellmemorelies, Wallace Banner, Kingsmill Jasper and the pups Wiseguy Mark, Stonepark Mick, Needham Eoin, Oldfriendsrbest, Carmac Chaos and Ballinveala Yolo. Will the winner come from one of those twenty ?. We will find out very soon.
Last season’s Irish Cup winner Foot Solution is 14/1 to make it back to back victories when the 2017 renewal takes place at Patrickswell this coming weekend. Drive On Smokey which ran-up to Foot Solution twelve months ago is 16/1 to go one better. Bookmakers have made Octane Wonder their 7/1 favourite followed by Skellig Shane at 9s and Wallace Banner at 10s. There are about six runners priced at 12/1 including Portane Ash for which there has been plenty of support in the last 48 hours. Another runner attracting support is Manntan Manor and his odds have now shortened from 25s to 20s.
Arguably the finest field ever has been assembled for the Patsy Byrne Select Bitch Stake and it will take some winning. Recent Grace & Matt Bruton Champion Bitch Stakes winner Killucan Rose is one of four co-favourites priced at 5/1. The others are Skellig Jewel (runner-up to Killucan Rose in Clonmel), Newinn Rose and the bitch pup Bexhill Anna which was also well supported to win the Oaks a few weeks ago but lost to Dicks Bimbo in the third round.
Thanks to Tomas McLoughlin, Eoin Flynn & Kieran Houlihan for putting together this hour long mini-documentary which looks at some of the stories behind past Irish Cup successes and shares a few expert views on what is likely to win the 2017 renewal which takes place next weekend, Feb 24-26.
His many coursing friends in Ireland will be very sad to hear that Len Elman has passed away in Spain after a short illness. A native of England, Len spent many years living in Cork from where he travelled to coursing meetings most weekends of the season. He became a member of the Mitchelstown based Twelve Happy Syndicate and made lifelong friends at clubs like Mitchelstown and Dungarvan etc. Len attended the National Meeting at Clonmel a few weeks ago but took ill and was hospitalized on his return to Spain where he had been living most recently.
Our sincere sympathy to his wife Barbara, sons Daniel & Ben and the extended Elman family.
Cremation will take place in Spain at 6pm on Thursday (Feb 23rd).
The following is the draw (with nominators) for the €40,000 to-the-winner 2017 Irish Cup which gets underway at Limerick Racecourse on Friday next, February 24th. The field is headed by last year’s winner Foot Solution seen here with connections & ICC / Irish Cup representatives following his success 12 months ago. The runner-up on that occasion, Drive On Smokey is also returning and no less than eight of the top ten points scorers for this year’s Kevin Smith Champion Stakes will be in action (Howdododo & Half The Odds being the exceptions). The puppy brigade are led by Derby semi-finalist Wiseguy Mark and quarter-finalists Needham Eoin & Ballinveala Yolo whilst Kingsmill Ariel attempts to become the first bitch to win the Irish Cup in 25 years, Dunsilly Queen in 1992 being the last to achieve this feat.
John Boyle Ashmore Rocket (p) v Tim O’Driscoll Skellig Shane
Mark Dilger Judiligence v O. Comerford & J. Herbert Abunchoftools (p)
Dermot O’Shea Cherrygrove Wolf v Raymond Smith Ballyhast Flyer
Patsy & Berkie Browne Octane Wonder v Marie Field Kyle Mozart
Matthew Ryan Killacolla Jet (p) v Michael Spillane Killarney Hilark James
Tadhg Sullivan Essential v Brendan Matthews Wallace Banner
Padraig and Conor Ryan Tory Hill Denzel v Michael Horgan Kilkillogue (p)
John Wilson Donovanneighbour v Jimmy Quinn Galevalley Hero (p)
Noreen McManus Alcar v Pat Burke Hold Firm
Liam & William Riordan Wiseguy Mark (p) v Tony Reddan Kerry Abu
M. O’Donovan Killaloe Foot Solution v Luke Kilcoyne Acres Bob (p)
Michael Spillane Bantry Gurteen Davi (p) v Christy Murphy Oldfriendsrbest (p)
Vincent Purtill Ballinveala Yolo (p) v Brian Murphy Highland Hunter
M. O’Donovan Tipperary Go Usain Go (p) v Murty McMahon Ivy Hill Time
Sir Mark Prescott Kingcormac Fairy v Noel Collins For The Parish (p)
Kieran Barry & John Harty Earl Of Clare v Caroline Foran Yippee Razor
Ned and Tommy Relihan Needham Eoin (p) v Brian & Laurence Jones Smearla Dresden (p)
Brendan Farrelly Dillrock Mick v John Egan Domain King
Eamonn Kiely Jet Stream v May Doolin Breska Diamond (p)
Pat Savage Kyle Bruce v Mary Fitzgerald Ever So Magic (p)
Leo Walsh Tellmemorelies v Pat Horgan Drive On Smokey
Una O’Sullivan Blueview Huggle v Bridget Byrne Carrowkeal Gavin
John Garrahy Mustdoitagain v Peter O Loghlen Walkinmyshoes
Basil Holian Maker Of Rules v Charlie & Gerry Chawke Champion Times
Francis Brooke Tractorman v Matt Feheney Callura Sonic (p)
Brian Divilly Kingsmill Jasper v Oliver Scallon Portane Ash
Fr. John Fitzgibbon Carmac Chaos(p) v Nora & Oliver Raleigh Ham and Inch (p)
Countess Dunraven & Lady Anna Brians Choice (p) v Jack O’Rourke Balleen Voyager
John Roche & Michael Fitzpatrick Kingsmill Ariel (b) v Brendan Duffy Stonepark Mick (p)
Pat Dalton Serene Angel v Mike Mann Cuine Hero
Tony Quinn Cuine Yet v Pat Pyne and Patsy Myers Another Country (p)
Pat Curtin Manntan Manor v Brendan Keogh Battleoftheboyne
Reserves: Needham Frankel; Kyle Alex ; Isle Of Destiny ; Cuine Dale ; Ballymore Sam ; Private Pulse ; Ballyglen Duke ; Ramona Jingles ;
CO LIMERICK COURSING CLUB
IRISH CUP meeting
Friday 24th, Saturday 25th & Sunday 26th February
Judge: Paul Horan
Slipper: Richard Quinn jnr
Start 11.00am on Friday/Saturday and 11.30am Sunday FRIDAY: Once through Irish Cup (Interval) Once through Patsy Byrne Select Bitch Stake, Earl of Dunraven Kilgobbin Dog Puppy Stake, Cu Chulainn Bar Bitch Puppy Stake and Kyle Invitational Champion Working Members Stake. SATURDAY: Second round Irish Cup. First round Woodlands House Hotel Irish Purse. (Interval) Third round Irish Cup, second round Select Bitch Stake, second round Irish Purse and first round Bill Chawke Irish Plate. SUNDAY: Commence with second round Champion Working Members Stake, first round Surplus Stake, second round Bitch Puppy Stake, second round Dog Puppy Stake, third round Select Bitch Stake, third round Irish Purse, second round Irish Plate and fourth round Irish Cup (Interval) Complete all semi-finals (Interval) Complete all finals.
Please be advised that following the prohibited substance testing procedures carried out at the recent National Meeting, all samples have been certified as Negative.
The Irish Coursing Club would like to thank owners, trainers and staff for co-operating fully with the process to ensure the integrity of our sport is maintained.
Full details on next week’s Sporting Press.
Our photo shows Leo Walsh, a member of the Cheese & Chips Syndicate, with their Kevin Smith Champion Stakes winner Howdododo and Declan Carr with Grace & Matt Bruton Champion Bitch Stake winner Killucan Rose. Both trained by Declan’s dad Kevin.
When we invited Declan & David Carr to participate in this season’s Fantasy Coursing for Charity they wisely included the two family all-age runners Howdododo and Killucan Rose in their selection. However not in their wildest dream did they imagine that these greyhounds would win both Champion Stakes at the 2017 National Meeting and accumulate a massive 360 Fantasy points between them since October (with possibly more to come). 200 of those points were won in Clonmel and when we add in the 50 points which David & Declan earned thanks to Kyle Mozart running-up the Kevin Smith Champion Stakes their new points total is 670.
Before we did the sums we thought that the 250 points won by the Carrs in Clonmel would be enough to move them into first place and put them on the road to becoming the first Fantasy contestants ever playing for Charity to scoop the top prize. However we forgot that it was also a great meeting for Tom Nolan of Abbeyfeale. Tom went into Clonmel 40 points ahead of the Carrs and he won 220 points (Howdododo 100, Kyle Mozart 50, Skellig Jewel 50 and Choctaw Squaw 20) so he actually remains 10 points ahead of them. More importantly he is our new Fantasy Coursing leader on 680 points. It would be fair to say he also has a team full of potential for the Irish Cup including family runner Octane Wonder and also Portane Ash & Mr Orange.
Killucan Rose was also an inspired choice by Micheal McMahon from Ballybunion. In fact on studying Michael’s team more closely we realised that he has the exact same eight as the Carr brothers so whatever happens they are going to end up on the same points. Cuine Yet, Kingsmill Jasper, Wallace Banner & Wazowski will be their big Irish Cup hopes. Of course the Carrs are guaranteed at least €1,000 for their chosen charity if they win that separate competition which is looking extremely likely at this stage.
Geraldine Doyle (with Alcar), Adrian O’Neill (with Skellig Shane & Needham Frankel), John Linehan & Donal Leahy (with Drive On Smokey) are just some of the others who have a realistic chance of overtaking our leaders if results fall right for them in Patrickswell in a few weeks’ time.
SPORTING PRESS FANTASY COURSING LEADERBOARD 02/02/17
Tom Nolan, Abbeyfeale
David & Declan Carr (CH), Killucan
Micheal McMahon, Ballybunion
Geraldine Doyle , Woodsgift
Adrian O’Neill, Tipperary Town
J Linehan & D Leahy Syn, Blarney
SPORTING PRESS FANTASY FOR CHARITY LEADERBOARD 02/02/17
On this week’s Sporting Press read how it is now back to Leaving Certificate studies for young Liam McAuliffe after training Knockout Glory to Horse & Jockey Hotel Oaks success last Monday.
Gerry Holian, trainer of BoyleSports Derby dividers Reikers Island and Blades Of Fire, says it would have been sad to see one of the dogs lose if the final had to be run but he has his own idea which one would have won.
Following a cracking Clonmel for the Carr family, it remains uncertain whether Kevin Smith Champion Stakes winner Howdododo will run in the Irish Cup but Grace & Matt Bruton Champion Bitch Stakes winner Killucan Rose is heading for the Select All Age Bitch Stake at Patrickswell unless she comes in season.
Berkie Browne says Illwaitforyou was 100/1 for the Oaks (not sure we ever saw that price on his board) but she certainly didn’t run like a 100/1 shot when taking the Dublin Coach Kitty Butler Stakes in impressive fashion for Noreen McManus.
The Glory Kilmihill Syndicate from Clare expect to follow up on their Stockproof Fencing Products TA Morris success with Abunchoftools by winning the All Ireland Senior Club Hurling Championship with Baile Aodha (Ballyea). And we find out the name of their pup for next season !!!
Finally, with standards of hare husbandry never as high, we put the young lady who can take much of the credit for same, Lindsey Edwards, ‘On The Spot’.
All on this week’s Sporting Press – In shops from today.
It was a family affair at the final day of the 92nd National Coursing Meeting in Clonmel today. As was widely predicted litter brothers Reikers Island and Blades Of Fire divided the Boylesports Derby for joint owners Mary O’Kelly, Mullingar and Mary Guiney, Rathkeale with both trained by Gerry Holian.
Litter brother & sister Howdododo and Killucan Rose recorded an historic double by winning the Kevin Smith Champion Stakes and the Grace & Matt Bruton Champion Bitch Stakes for the Carr family, Killucan, Co Westmeath and the Cheese & Chips Syndicate.
There will be huge celebrations in Athea, Co Limerick after father & son Bill & Liam McAuliffe won the Horse & Jockey Hotel Oaks with Knockout Glory.
The Glory-Kilmihill Syndicate from Clare were in full voice cheering Abunchoftools to victory in the Stockproof Fencing Products TA Morris Stakes.
And three years after her dam won the Champion Bitch Stake, Illwaitforyou took the Dublin Coach Kitty Butler Stakes for Noreen McManus and her son Kieran.
It had been 36 years since the Derby was divided but once Reikers Island and Blades Of Fire were placed in the same ownership a few weeks ago (shortly after Reikers Island won Corn Na Feile for Dr Paddy O’Kelly) it became a very distinct possibility that these two super hounds would share the spoils in Clonmel. They were faultless over the three days and the only regret is that we will never see them go upfield together. What a buckle that would be. However not one person will begrudge their dam Blades Of Glory this Classic victory after producing some exceptional offspring in recent years for Denis Guiney & family.
20 years ago the McAuliffe family came to Clonmel with the 5/1 Oaks favourite & Corn Na Feile winner Knockout Rose but it was not to be. There was much less hype about Knockout Glory but many shrewd judges who saw her qualify in Charleville availed of the 25/1 on offer on Saturday morning. She came through arguably the toughest quarter and then ran like a true Oaks Queen in the semi-final and final to give her sire Adios Alonso a cracking Oaks / Derby double or would you call it a treble considering two sons divided the Derby ?. Her grand-dam Portinard Nine won the Champion Bitch Stake five years ago.
Kevin Carr, his sons Declan & David and their friends in the Cheese & Chips Syndicate would probably have settled for the Dog or Bitch Champion Stakes as they travelled from Westmeath this morning. To be going home with both must be like a dream for them. However for the second year running Howdododo (Johnny Casanova – Your Symbolic) enthralled us at Powerstown Park and adds the Kevin Smith Champion Stakes to his TA Morris Stakes won in 2016. His sister Killucan Rose was one of the bigger priced runners before the Grace & Matt Bruton Champion Bitch Stake got underway but was never really troubled in any of her three courses. With Reikers Island qualifying at Westmeath Utd and Dr Paddy & Mary O’Kelly their own, the celebrations in Westmeath will last until its time to course in Raharney next October.
And so concluded the 92nd National Meeting which was up there with the best of them in terms of quality of winners, quality of hares, attendances, weather and ground conditions.
We may have no control over the weather but none of the other parts happened by accident and there are many deserving of a celebratory drink tonight, not least the hare husbandry team. Roll on 2018.
The sunshine we enjoyed yesterday may have taken the day off but the greyhounds and the hares of the 92nd National Coursing Meeting lit up Powerstown Park today in front of an attendance which was again up on 2016 figures.
We now know our ‘Final 8’ in the BoyleSports Derby and Horse & Jockey Hotel Oaks of 2017 and what a thrill it must be for their connections.
To make it to the third day of Clonmel is the dream of every coursing man, woman and child as the aptly named owners of Derby quarter-finalist Wheres Mr Wilks, the ‘Part Of A Dream Syndicate’ will most surely agree this evening.
Incidentally Crohane & Killenaule CC must be delighted to be the only club with both of their qualifiers through to the third day (Wheres Mr Wilks and Yodgik). And the members of Abbeydorney CC who are busy fundraising at this year’s National Meeting must be hoping that their qualifier Wiseguy Mark can win the Derby and earn them the €1,000 Club Award kindly sponsored by Michael Horgan.
But back to today and the morning session belonged to Dicks Bimbo in the Oaks which brought a loud gasp from the stands when stopping the clock in a brilliant 12.28. She followed that up with a gutsy victory over the fancied Bexhill Anna in the third round and is now 6/4 favourite.
That time was only lowered once today when Wiseguy Mark continued his impressive run through the Derby and recorded 12.24 in his third round success over Go Usain Go. On quite a number of occasions in the past the Consolation Stake winner has been put out by the Derby/Oaks winner in the first round so it is interesting that Don Cossack (beaten by Wiseguy Mark) is looking like a potential winner of the Stockproof Fencing TA Morris. We could say the same of Mother Of Pearl which did a brilliant 12.36 in the Dublin Coach Kitty Butler after being eliminated from the Oaks yesterday by a bitch that is loving the hill, Touch Of Class.
Truthfully, as the betting indicates, the Horse & Jockey Hotel Oaks is still wide open. Any one of the eight remaining would be a worthy winner. Jamaica Judy was fortunate to avoid a dusting this afternoon. The first turn took place over near the flag hut but a racing hare made cover quickly. Other than that they all got about the same with Richie Quinn jnr (and Brian Doyle) performing excellently.
To name the Final Four should be at least 10/1 !!!!. I’ll side with Jamaica Judy, Touch Of Class, Yodgik and Dicks Bimbo but the other four ladies, Try Colour, Gadget Queen, Our Miztique and Knockout Glory (all 20/1 chances last week) are running out of their skin.
The betting in the BoyleSports Derby suggests we should be in for one fascinating quarter-final and two epic semi-finals. Wheres Mr Wilks is certainly the worst off on the handicap and Take Three only qualified at Sevenhouses two weeks ago today. Ballinveala Yolo is the other priced in double figures but there was nothing wrong with his clock of 12.38 this afternoon. The possibility of a divide between the litter brothers Reikers Island and Blades Of Fire will become a step closer if the first named puts out Needham Eoin in the morning but that could be the course of the entire meeting. The brothers were faultless today though and it is starting to feel like that whatever beats them (if anything) will win the Derby. Ballygerald Buzz, a June whelp like Needham Eoin, might have to beat three Gerry Holian trained runners to win the Derby but he has one down after putting out Wi Can Riki this afternoon and could give Gerry (pictured) a few more anxious moments. Wiseguy Mark only has to keep repeating what he has done in every course so far to rattle the Derby for Paudie Lyons and Gavin Johns.
We simply can’t wait for the action to resume again tomorrow at 11.30am and with the Grace & Matt Bruton Champion Stakes and the Kevin Smith Champion Stakes only starting it is going to be ‘Coursing Heaven’ for supporters and enthusiasts.
Bob Geldof and the Boomtown Rats were obviously never at the National Meeting Finals Day on a Monday !!!!
Best of Luck to everyone. (Third Round Clocks & Current Betting now in Quick Results)