GREYHOUND DERBY QUARTER FINALS PREVIEW: We are down to the last 24 of the Greyhound Derby ahead of Quarter-Final night at Nottingham Stadium. Jonathan Hobbs is here with his lays and plays for a super Saturday of canine action.
Four quarter-finals of the Star Sports, Arc and LPS Greyhound Derby spice the RPGTV programme – remember it’s a 7pm start with Nottingham and Crayford’s Ladbrokes.com Kent Cesarewitch Final card sharing centre-stage.
Incredibly for the quarter-finals of an English Derby, the field includes not just the first and second from last year at Towcester – Dorotas Wildcat and Droopys Verve – but also the first and second from Shelbourne’s Irish Derby Final in Ballyanne Sim and Magical Bale.
Of course, given the pair are kennelmates, Kevin Hutton holds a strong hand heading into the crunch stage of the Derby with Dorotas Wildcat and Magical Bale, but Ireland’s challenge also remains strong with Clonbrien Prince and Skywalker Logan both still in.
Of course, there is still time for the likes of Jaytee Taylor to make a real statement, while the top bitch Queen Beyonce is still defending an unbeaten record in the Derby – as is Clonbrien Prince – and she is doing nothing wrong. Let battle commence again . . .
First quarter-final (8.31)
Play: Droopys Verve
Lays: Priceless Blake, King Sheeran
Why? Fastest in the third round, Droopys Verve gatecrashed the Derby party last week after first and second round knockbacks. He is stronger this year than now, which keeps him a real threat if in contention off the second bend – look how he careered away last week. A middle move from Roxholme Jim poses problems for Priceless Blake, while King Sheeran was all out to qualify last week. He needs a career-best run now.
Second quarter-final (8.48)
Lay: Magical Bale
Why? Worseforwear looked a touch unlucky last week when just failing to get round Priceless Blake at the first bend. The Irish raider is blessed with a cracking turn of foot and should solo into the bend, with Magical Bale heading towards the middle. The latter is all-class, however, and could still lead, but any of Droopys Expert, Lemon Shane and Ballymac Tas could stand in his way. Great race in store nevertheless.
Third quarter-final (9.05)
Play: Clonbrien Prince
Lay: Queen Beyonce
Why? Clonbrien Prince seems to be getting stronger and, even though he faces a wider draw, a rails move from Ballyanne Sim clears the way for the orange jacket. Conversely, Queen Beyonce could face a pincer movement from middle-moving Front Edge and rails-edging Paganini Show – unless she traps in front of the pair (very possible!). Both Queen Beyonce and Clonbrien Prince are unbeaten – something has to give. Dead-heat anyone?
Fourth quarter-final (9.22)
Play: Dorotas Wildcat
Why? So far, so good for the defending champion. Into the quarter-finals now, Dorotas Wildcat’s pace should see him clear his lines again and set the tempo – and he’s a tough nut to crack when in front. Less reliant on the rails now than as a younger dog, he edged middle from trap two last week so the black jacket can work well. Both Skywalker Logan and Jaytee Taylor need to do things the hard way, but would still be brave lays.
Good luck all. Enjoy.
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