Micky’s looking to lay a solid foundation with Iberostar – By Frank Kieran
AS a native Armagh man I’ve long been aware of the keen footballing rivalry between ourselves and our neighbours next door in Co Down. However, two coursing enthusiasts from either side of the Clanrye River have put those differences aside in the hope of a shot at glory on the coursing field.
Mourne native, Micky Larkin, is self-employed and works at laying tarmac for airport runways, a demanding job and one which leaves the Newry-man no time to keep any greyhounds at home. As a result, he sent his 2016 Abbeyfeale Oaks TS and 2017 Lixnaw All-Age Bitch Stake winner, Iberostar (Adios Alonso-Duarigle Magic), to Stephen Gollogly, from just outside Newtownhamilton, Co Armagh, to be whelped down and the brindle welcomed 2 dogs and 7 bitches, by Watchman, on April 1, with the pair splitting the litter:
“I’m only back to work this week and we are re-laying the runway at the airport in Knock. Before the restrictions were imposed because of Covid-19 I was in Antarctica for 7-8 weeks and I spent the same amount of time in New Zealand before Christmas. The work is tough, and it keeps me away from home for periods of time but the extra few quid earned allows me to keep an interest by having a few in training and to have pups reared.” stated Micky.
“I was brought up with the track and my father, Brian, won the Northern Ireland Oaks at Drumbo Park in 2017 with Bangor Lily, but the coursing game is just more enjoyable. There’s a social side to it and I love the chance to get a weekend away to a meeting. My wife, Siobhan, and the kids, Caoimhe (11), Caitriona (10) and Finbarr (6), love the weekends away as well, especially the kids, as all three are into the Comhaltas and the social side of the coursing lends itself to music and song.
“Stephen’s done a great job and they are smashing pups. I’ll keep a dog and a bitch, and that pair will go down to Dan Joe (Guiney) in time.”
While Micky and Dan Joe will have to wait until next year to go to post with those two, the partnership will have runners for the forthcoming season, an all-age prospect in Dalcasian Magic (Adios Alonso-Duarigle Magic), and his half-brother, Reduced To Clear, a trial-stake hopeful by Newinn Wonder.
“I’m a terror when I’m away with work for checking out the reduced to clear shelves in supermarkets and I thought to myself that was a right name for a dog, though I get plenty of slagging about it from Robert (Green) and Mark (Mulholland).”
Micky is also tied up in a dog with the latter for the forthcoming season, from Iberostar’s maiden litter, by Newinn Wonder.
“I kept three from her first litter, two dogs and a bitch, and Mark is halves on one of the dogs, and there are a couple with Stephen, so I’ll have plenty of interest for the year ahead.”
Given his line of work, willingness to travel and with runners aplenty, Micky could be forgiven for hoping that all roads travelled might be paved with success.
Main Photo: Micky and Laoise Gollogly (daughter of Stephen) with Iberostar and her Newinn Wonder saplings for the forthcoming season.
Below: Laoise with Iberostar and Micky Larkin with the Watchman pups.
Below (bottom): Micky and his children, Caoimhe, Caitriona and Finbarr with all-age prospect Dalcasian Magic.