JONATHAN HOBBS: Some fantastic racing tonight for greyhound racing fans, with open races at Crayford, Hove and Sheffield – with the Coral Winter Derby semis and Ladbrokes Golden Jacket heats sharing the stage.
King Sheeran is favourite to win at Hove and will be a warm order for his semi -final tonight, while a host of top-class stayers at Crayford mean it’s 7-1 the field for one of the great betting shop competitions.
Looking at the ante-post market at Crayford, Roxholme Poppy makes appeal. Hayley Keightley’s record-breaking George Ing St Leger winner from last year has always run Crayford well and her comeback work has been solid.
At bigger odds, Tiffield Maximus could be the type to keep qualifying. He’s rarely far away in his races, with some good form on the card at Romford recently catching the eye. His draw tonight for the heats looks decent enough.
Let’s look at the major races tonight.
Crayford: Ladbrokes Golden Jacket heats
7.43: Mark Wallis could be in for a decent night with a fair number of chances. Coronation Cup winner Antigua Rum stepped up in trip for a Golden Jacket prep last week and should soon be handy outside. Beechgrove Bell is the locals’ best chance outright and should go well.
Play: Antigua Rum
8.00: Brendan Maunsell’s Redzer Ardfert arrives back in the UK aiming for another major prize having landed the St Leger at Perry Barr last year. The Irish champion trialled well last week and should have too much class. Tiffield Maximus keeps on well.
Play: Redzer Ardfert
8.17: Roxholme Poppy has run some good races at Crayford and, one of the stars of the six-bend scene last year, can follow up a solid comeback win at Monmore – Hayley Keightley’s bitch has her draw. Desperado Dan is never far away.
Play: Roxholme Poppy
8.51 Sheldan was impressive her C&D last week and could be even better this year. She reached a number of major finals last year for Kevin Boon and landed the Summer Classic at Monmore. Drive On Betsy impressed last week and has pace at both ends.
9.09: Race of the night now. Stardom and Antigua Fire (ex Towcester Story) were first and second in the Jacket last year and feature here in a red-hot affair. Throw in rising star Skilful Sandie and Micks Little Gem – and it’s a cracker. Antigua Fire could be the answer.
Play: Antigua Fire
9.27: Sharon Thompson’s Sparta Master has run well in the recent major Romford comps, making the finals of the Essex Vase and Coronation Cup. However, he runs Crayford as well having notched up wins here. Avastorm is top class at best and this draw will aid her cause.
Play: Sparta Master
Hove: Coral Winter Derby semis
8.38 King Sheeran overcame a slow start in the heats, but powered through for victory. Recently winner of the Olympic, Liz McNair’s dog should have too much all-round speed for likely leader Sidaz Jet. However, don’t be surprised if the latter escapes.
Play: King Sheeran
8.53: King Louis might be the value here. He has a chance to lead here for the Liz McNair camp and could get away, although heading Volcanic Reef into the turn might be key. Antigua Romeo and Forest Alan are both strong-running sorts.
Play: King Louis
9.08 Make No Apologie cut loose last week and could again be the target for his rivals to aim at – and he might get away. However Sonic Spur caught the eye in defeat when staying on and Chris Akers’ bitch takes some holding with a clear run.
Play: Sonic Spur
Good luck everyone.
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