JONATHAN HOBBS SUNDAY: Just a few days before the closing date for entries for the Star Sports and TRC Events & Leisure English Greyhound Derby at Towcester – and it’s another superb Sunday card at the Northamptonshire venue.

Once again there is plenty of Irish interest on the card which is live on SportyStuff TV/RPGTV as the build up to continues to the Classic which kicks off across three nights from Thursday, May 19. The entry will be capped at 192.

Let’s look at the pick of the races.


1.57: Mickys Barrett’s style of running suits Towcester and Jason Gray’s dog is fancied to edge a strong Irish challenge. A Northern Puppy Derby finalist, Mickys Barrett has trialled well and can edge Romeo On Tilt, plus Ireland’s Bockos Vieira and Ballymore Border.

Play: Mickys Barrett

2.12: Graham Holland’s kennel has flexed its muscles in recent weeks and they look set for a strong Towcester challenge. Their Russian Glory could be tough to hold here given a decent sprint trial and solid Irish lines – expect him to soon be in the mix.

Play: Russian Glory

2.52: Signet Goofy is interesting from John Mullins. The six-box steps up from sprinting and, while he has struggled to handle 500m here in the past, has been in superb form over two bends and his lead could be a long one. It might be a long way home, however.

Play: Signet Goofy

3.11: Pocket Lola was electric from the boxes last week and same again could put these under pressure. Seamus Cahill’s bitch takes on crack Irish raider Knight Tornado, the evergreen Faughan Rebel and improving Romeo De Niro, but Lola might have flown.

Play: Pocket Lola

3.28: Havana Bale Out was costly to follow last week but remains a very fast greyhound as trials show – not least a 29.15sec in March. Liz McNair’s bitch needs her own way perhaps, but the switch to the stripes can ensure a clear run and that makes her tough to hold.

Play: Havana Bale Out

3.48: Havana Lover made a real splash in the recent Maiden Derby until a slow start in the semis behind the eventual winner Hellofakerfuffle had her up against in, especially once being forced wide. This midfield pitch likely works better for Liz McNair’s runner.

Play: Havana Lover

5.08: Similar to Signet Goofy in a previous trial stakes, Ballymac Slapup is interesting upped to 500m for this contest. John Mullins’ dog is a cracking sprinter – indeed had a good battle with Signet Goofy at Perry Barr latest – and will look to make all here.

Play: Ballymac Slapup

6.02: The final race on the Towcester card could see Lanzo bounce back. Improvement on a prep trial will be needed, but a chance to boss proceedings inside gives Richard Yeates’s runner a huge chance to get back on the winning trail. His best Hove form is top notch.

Play: Lanzo

Good luck all.