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Michael Fortune's Derby Report


IGB CEO Ger Dollard has described Saturday night’s BoyleSports Irish Derby final meeting as a “spectacular success”.

 “It was one of the most successful Derby final nights in recent years with commercial revenue, attendance and Tote figures all increased on previous years. It really was a bumper occasion which had a capacity crowd, an increase of 9% on last year, food and beverage sales up 5% and Tote up 2%. In the region of 2,000 people availed of the stadium’s food and hospitality packages,” he said.

“The whole event was a milestone for the sport in Dublin and the whole occasion and atmosphere showcased what the sport has to offer. The racing all night was outstanding and the Derby itself was a classic in every sense,  with Good News giving a first Derby winner to a new generation trainer, Pat Guilfoyle from Moneygall, and owners Sandra Guilfoyle, Pat’s sister, and Mary Kennedy.”

Mr. Dollard said the Derby also gave a striking demonstration of the rigorous, improved approach to regulation and integrity within the sport. “All Derby finalists were subject to rigorous testing in recent weeks. 151 tests, including out of competition and tests at quarter and semi-final stages were carried out and all tests have proved negative. All finalists were again tested on Derby day last Saturday. All of this gives a sense of the very clear intent of the Irish Greyhound Board in this important area,” the CEO added.



If ever a dog was well named it was Good News and he lived up to his title in truly majestic style as he captured the 2017 BoyleSports Irish Derby at Shelbourne Park on Saturday night.

This was a special performance on a very special night with Good News proving to be one of the greatest winners of our premier classic and it was secured virtually at traprise.

The Pat Guilfoyle trained son of Definate Opinion and Pippy absolutely flew from trap two while, crucially for him, the inside runner Hey Bound was slowly into stride. It meant that Good News had a solo run to the bend and he was pursued up by Black Farren with Buckos Dream, Jaytee Jet and Sonic disputing third.

Jaytee Jet was crowded entering the b end and he lost his position. Sonic was then forced wide on the bend but Good News raced into the back with a lead of two lengths over Black Farren and Sonic was soon back in third – but already facing a mountain to climb.

Black Farren, to his credit, ran an absolute stormer for his syndicate owners and challenged all the way to the line.

That mountain proved to be too much of a climb for Sonic on the night and Good News ran on to take the prize for owners Sandra Guilfoyle and Mary Kennedy by 2 lengths from Black Farren in 29.37 and it was another two lengths to Sonic in third.

Jaytee Jet came home four lengths fourth, followed in by Buckos Dream and Hey Bound.

As we said earlier this was a really special performance and proving it was the fact that this was the fastest Derby final winning time since the Derby moved to 550 yards back in 1986.

Jenna Boyle presents the trophy to Mary Kennedy and Alice Guilfoyle after Good News won the 2017 BoyleSports Irish Greyhound Derby. Also included are Ger Dollard CEO IGB, Phil Meaney Chairman IGB, Andrew Doyle Minister of State at Dept of Agriculture, trainer Pat Guilfoyle and the Kennedy and Guilfoyle families.

Pic: Imelda Grauer


Yes, a truly special night for greyhound racing after what has been anything but a good year for the sport.

There was a massive crowd present and the atmosphere was quite electric. It remained so until the early hours of the morning as everybody seemed to want to celebrate an occasion that will live long in the memory.

In the race before the Derby final there had been an almighty battle for the BoyleSports Derby Plate and it ended up with as tight a photo-finish as you could imagine. After close study the judge decided in favour of the Peter Cronin trained Cometwopass as he edged out Ballymac Galway by a short head with Fast Fit Alex half a length back in third.

The pattern of the race went very much as anticipated with the Stephen Carroll owned Cometwopass (Ballymac Eske/ Zero  Two) displaying his customary early zip and he was almost two lengths in front of Ballymac Galway at the bend with Fast Fit Alex in behind. But there was carnage in behind as Jaytee Dutch ran wide and got entangled with Elusive Heights and Dream Mover.

It was now effectively a three-dog race but Cometwopass maintained a two lengths lead down the far side from Ballymac Galway with Fast Fit Alex getting marginally closer in third. But as Cometwopass turned for home you could sense that his stamina was running out and the pursuers were closing. They raced wide apart to the line and a lengthy photo-finish deliberation resulted in the judge pronouncing that Cometwopass had held on by a short head from Ballymac Galway in 29.97. Fast Fit Alex was just half a length third.



Gates will open at Shelbourne at 4pm and there will be Live Music from that stage until shortly before the first race. The Music will resume after the last race.

All bar facilities will be available from 4pm and the TV Screens will be showing the live sport worldwide.



Word from across the water is that Racing Post Greyhound TV has secured agreement to show Saturday's Boylesports Irish Derby final at Shelbourne Park live as a one-off addition to the regular Crayford and Newcastle cards.
“We are delighted to be able to restore live coverage of the Irish Derby final after missing last year,” said RPGTV executive producer Kevan Moretti yesterday, “and are very grateful to SIS and the Irish Greyhound Board for their assistance in enabling this.
“Our viewers love top-class racing and the Irish Derby final is always one of the highlights of the year.”

The Irish Derby final also features in a 90 minute live broadcast on RTE 2.





Despite the inclement weather a great crowd turned up at Shelbourne on Saturday night for the semi-finals of the BoyleSports Irish Derby and they certainly got all sorts of everything.

There was a major shock in the opening heat with the elimination of two leading fancies Native Chimes and Tyrur Harold while Kilgraney Ace made his exit in the second heat. Fastest winner of the heats was Good News as he produced a cracking 29.49 all the way success.


Black Farran displayed all his qualities in the opening semi final to secure his place in next Saturday’s showpiece.

The Graham Holland trained tracker came away racing from the inside box to race prominently, although it was Buckos Dream that predictably shot to the front into the corner.

Hey Bound also displayed fine early speed to turn second, while Black Farran held his pitch on the fence to slip around in third.

Native Chimes forced his way around in fourth, pushing Tyrur Harold into Jaytee Barracuda in the process. That effectively ended the hopes of the last two named.

Entering the back straight Buckos Dream had opened up a lead of four lengths plus and he continued to pile on the pressure to the third turn. Black Farran moved upsides Hey Bound early in the back straight and quickly moved second.

Buckos Dream remained clear as they began to turn, but Black Farran was now carrying real momentum. As Buckos Dream began to run out of steam, Black Farran closed the gap rapidly and he shot to the front in the final twenty five yards to see off Buckos Dream by an ever-increasing length and a half in 29.63. Hey Bound stuck on grimly to qualify in third, two and a half lengths behind Buckos Dream. 


Good News was at his imperious best as he raced to a brilliant victory in the second semi.

This was certainly a race decided at trap rise as the Pat Guilfoyle trained Good News (Definate Opinion/ Pippy) flew out of the inside trap and immediately built up a lead of a few lengths with Sonic second and Jaytee Jet third. Kilgraney Ace had missed the kick and was at the back of the field.

Sonic was virtually joined by Jaytee Jet on the second bend and already the first three places looked decided. Sonic began to get closer racing down the back and the cheers rose from the stands but you don’t give Good News too much of a start and hope to beat him. `Sonic got to within three lengths at the third bend but he couldn’t get near the leader and the Sandra Guilfoyle and Mary Kennedy owned Good News raced on up the straight to win by two lengths in a flying 29.49 which was a mighty effort considering the amount of rain which had fallen on the track. The remarkable Jaytee Jet, in his fifth year, ran on with his usual gusto to be a two and a half length third and he was followed in by Drumsna Star and Kilgraney Ace.










He may be four years of age, but the evergreen Jaytee Dutch produced a wonderful display to set the standard in the semis of the Boylesports Derby Plate when coming home fast to collar Ballymac Galway in the second heat.

John Turner’s brilliant servant was only third into the back straight behind the fast starting Ballymac Galway, but there was a real sense of purpose about how he moved into the third turn. Taking second from Dream Mover at halfway, the Paul Hennessy trained star quickly set his sights on the leader.

Ballymac Galway continued to race clear, but Jaytee Dutch closed rapidly around the last two bends before flying up the straight. In a thrilling finish, Jaytee Dutch got to the front in plenty of time to eventually score by a half a length in 29.75. Dream Mover stayed on well to take third a length and half further back.



The IGB yesterday confirmed that all samples taken during the Derby up to and including the third round on September 2nd have been returned negative and are determined to be free from prohibited substances.



It was quite a session of quarter final heats in the BoyleSports Irish Derby at Shelbourne on Saturday night.

Obviously due to the late racing at Leopardstown many members of the crowd were late in arriving at the track. When they did it was well worth their while.

There was a mixture of fancied winners and upsets, the biggest of all being the defeat of Clares Rocket as he was edged out in the final stride by Good News. Sonic and Black Farren completed a heat double for Graham Holland while the fastest winner of the session was the hugely impressive Native Chimes.


Sonic was understandably a red-hot favourite for the opening quarter final and the brilliant son of Knockglass Billy and Vickis Dream didn’t disappoint.

Making a slick exit from trap five, the favourite was soon in front, but he had to show great determination to get around the corner unscathed.

As he drove the corner, he took a hefty bump from Hey Bound, who was forced wide by Drive On Tipp. This all resulted in Sonic maintaining his advantage with his kennel companion Clona Kid left second on the fence.

Hey Bound recovered quickly to move past Clona Kid down the back straight, but Sonic was simply too good for his rivals. Marian Maloney’s 2016 Derby favourite was pulling right away to secure his semi-final spot in style. 

Meanwhile Jaytee Barracuda was motoring to move third entering the third turn and he came home strongly to take second, but this contest was all about Sonic. Powering up the straight, the June ’14 whelp went on to see off Jaytee Barracuda by eight and a half lengths in 29.61. the all important third qualifying spot went to Hey Bound, who finished a further length and a half adrift.


Native Chimes is certainly singing the right tune at present and the powerful son of Premier Fantasy and Native Gypsy secured his place in the final twelve in magnificent fashion in the second quarter final.

Although not the fastest into stride, the Johnny O’Sullivan trained star was left room to race by Ballymac Sarahjo as she cut inwards from trap four. This allowed Native Chimes to get up a head of steam and he powered into the corner to assume control.

Kilgraney Ace moved second before the turn from trap six, but was always going to struggle to get to the leader. As is his way, Native Chimes really flew down the back straight to open a commanding advantage. Native Chimes, owned by John Kelleher and Pat Norton, continued to stride out majestically up the straight to eventually cross the line three and a half lengths clear of the strong staying Kilgraney Ace in 29.44. Rank outsider Drumsna Star ran a big race to be a five length third.  


Graham Holland had two runners again in this heat and they enjoyed contrasting fortune.

The hitherto unbeaten Droopys Cabaye was crowded in the early yards as the favourite Tyrur Harold edged inwards from traps and he disputed the lead into the corner with Milldean Skip.

Milldean showed in front into the back and he was chased by Tyrur Harold and Black Farren. The latter hit the front entering the third bend and was just ahead of Tyrur Harold on the third bend. Black Farren (Droopys Cain/ Ballycowen Moll), owned by the Lionheart Syndicate, kicked on at this point and won by two lengths from Tyrur Harold in 29.68. The evergreen Jaytee Jet ran on strongly to be a two length third, edging Milldean Skip out of third spot by a head.


Clares Rocket was a red-hot favourite to maintain his unbeaten record in the classic but for once he failed to deliver as he was edged out in the final strides by Good News.

This was a race which changed complexion on a few occasions and the result was in the balance until the final strides.

Clares Rocket didn’t explode out of traps and it was neck and neck up between Good News, Buckos Dream and Clares Rocket. The latter checked slightly into the corner and Buckos Dream moved ahead between bends to open up a two length gap over Good News. Clares Rocket then flew the back to go second at halfway and he challenged Buckos Dream at the third bend. He was cut off and lost at least a length as Buckos led for home. But Clares Rocket took it up on the run-in but was then collared in the final strides by the Pat Guilfoyle trained Good News (Definate Opinion/ Pippy) which prevailed by a neck in 29.59 with Buckos Dream a length third.



The best wine was kept to last in the three second round heats of the BoyleSports Derby Plate.

It saw the Noel Walker trained Fast Fit Alex (Droopys Scolari/ Now Its Alex) return to his best form as he broke fast from trap two and led up from Jaytee Dutch with Ballybough Dad moving second on the bend. The latter challenged hard but Fast Fit Alex raced home a length in front of Ballybough in 29.62 with Jaytee Dutch staying on strongly a similar distance third.

Earlier Rosemary Buggy’s Kilgraney Denver had guaranteed owner’s brother Tom with a semi-finalist in both the Derby and the Plate. Kilgraney Denver (Kinloch Brae/ Lady Kilgraney) just won the battle to the bend from Toolmaker Obama and he led into the back from Lisnastrane Gold. The latter challenged hard along with Elusive Heights but Kilgraney won by a length and a head from Lisnastrane and Elusive in 29.85.

The opening heat saw the Peter Cronin trained Cometwopass (Ballymac Eske/ Zero Two) gain an all the way victory in 30.00. He displayed his traditional early pace to go a few lengths clear to the bend and he was three lengths in front of Ballymac Galway down the far side. The Stephen Carroll owned Cometwopass was always in control and won by three lengths from Ballymac Galway with Dream Mover two lengths third.



It was a really special night at Shelbourne with a smashing crowd on hand for the third round of the BoyleSports Irish Derby.

They weren’t disappointed with kennel companions Clares Rocket and Sonic producing powerful performances while Tyrur Harold and Kilgraney Ace also served up very tasty efforts.

Graham Holland maintained his grip on the classic with four of the eight heat winners while he had eight qualifiers altogether for the quarter finals next week. Fastest winner again was Clares Rocket but he was only two spots quicker than Tyrur Harold. Few, though, will argue against the statement that Sonic produced the most impressive run of the night.


After running well to finish second in the opening two rounds, Sidarian Fern obliged for her loyal followers in the first of the third round heats.

The Sidarian Syndicate owned daughter of Tyrur Big Mike and Diegos Lady hit the ground running from trap three to lead the field from the start.

The favourite, Burnt Beans soon gave chase, but he failed to show the same sparkle as nine days previous. It meant that Graham Holland trained Sidarian Fern was allowed to take them along into the back straight. Burnt Beans did turn second, but he could never threaten and was headed by Ballymac Sarah Jo around the final two bends.

In contrast Sidarian Fern was galloping along freely out front and she went on to cross the line a length and a half to the god over the staying on Ballymac Sarah Jo in 29.98. Burnt Beans was the same distance away in third.


PJ Fahy’s Tyrur Harold was understandably installed a hot favourite for the second heat and he duly obliged in style.

Black Farren was actually fastest into stride on the inside of the track, but he couldn’t match the early speed of Tyrur Harold.

The favourite moved to the front well before the corner and once doing so he was always dominant. Jaytee Barracuda slipped around in second from a wide draw, but he never looked threatening despite running hard throughout.

Tyrur Harold (Tullymurry Act/ Badminton Girl) was simply too good as he stayed on strongly to maintain his unbeaten record in the event by three lengths in 29.60. Black Farren took the third qualifying spot a further two and a half lengths adrift.


Native Chimes was another winning favourite when coming home clear in Heat 3 for Johnny O’Sullivan, John Kelleher and Pat Norton.

Rather predictably Clona Kid performed the pace-setting duties, but his fate was sealed when Native Chimes displayed fine early pace after a tardy start to turn second on the wide outside.

Once doing so Native Chimes was always going to be difficult to contain. The powerful son of Premier Fantasy and Native Gypsy is renowned for his back straight pace and he picked up the leader by the third turn before driving through on the rail.

From that point it was plain sailing for Native Chimes. Maintaining a strong gallop to the finish he emerged a comfortable two length winner over Clona Kid in 29.81, while Milldean Skip ran a fine race to finish just a length away in third.


John Turner’s Jaytee Jet (Droopys Scolari/ Chin Gach Gook) was gifted plenty of room to race in Heat 4 and he seized his opportunity with all four paws coming home fast to beat Skywalker Manner.

The latter was draw in five, but he cut straight for the fence at trap rise leaving Jaytee Jet with clear space to run into.

The Paul Hennessy trained Jaytee Jet disputed second into the turn with Me Phat Daddy, but got the better of that rival between the bends. Skywalker Manner remained clear, but Jaytee Jet inched closer down the far side before launching a decisive challenge on the run in. The former English Derby champion powered up the straight to assume control before crossing the line two and a half lengths in 29.79. Skywalker Manner held off the fast finishing Mick by a length to take second.


Surely the most improved tracker of recent weeks, Droopys Cabaye produced another smashing effort to maintain his unbeaten record in the classic when winning this heat.

It was Droopys Noah which led up from Good News and Droopys Cabaye but Good News was forced to check when Droopys Noah cut the bend.

Droopys Cabaye was second on the bend and, as usual, he kicked at this point and was in front early in the back straight. Good News, meanwhile, ran the back straight hard and a moved second at the third bend. He ran on strongly but couldn’t catch the Larry O’Rourke owned, Graham Holland trained Droopys Cabaye which won by a length in 29.80. It was then two and a half lengths to Swithins Brae which came through on the run-in to finish third.


Priced at 1-6 in the ring, the Graham Holland trained Clares Rocket was all the rage for this contest and he won it as easily as his odds suggested he would.

He broke well from the outside trap and was in front after a stride. He hit the corner a few lengths in front of Pension Plan with Drumsna Star in third.

Now the Full House Syndicate owned son of Confident Rankin and Lemon Madrid he turned on the gas and moved clear. He was six in front at halfway and, fair play to Pension Plan, the margin only increased to seven lengths by the line in a time of 29.58. Pension Plan ran a cracking contest and he was three lengths in front of Drumsna Star.


Making it a fourth heat winner on the night for Graham Holland, Sonic (Knockgrass Billy/ Vickis Dream) gave an exhibition of power and tracking ability in winning Heat 7 and he would have to be rated a threat to his illustrious kennel companion which had won the previous race.

Sonic broke reasonably but was no match to the bend for Buckos Dream and Hey Bound but he took the bend in third place. He was almost six lengths off the lead entering the back straight but it was from here than he produced the fireworks. Motoring along the back straight he switched inside Hey Bound to go second at the third bend and then adroitly moved out to challenge Buckos Dream on his outside turning for home. Marion Moloney’s star then absolutely stormed up the straight to win by three lengths from Buckos Dream in 29.69 with Hey Bound two lengths third.


Thoughts that the last of the heats lay between the kennel companions Drive On Tipp and Clonbrien Hero were blown right out of the water as Tom Buggy’s Kilgraney Ace (Scolari Me Daddy/ Kilgraney Poppy) produced an explosive display in winning the final heat in 29.70.

The field broke pretty level with Drive On Tipp well away on the inner but the black jacket of Kilgraney Ace soon shot to the front and he was two lengths in front at the bend of Drive On Tipp with Clonbrien Hero third. Kilgraney Ace then proceeded to move right away down the back and he was five to the good from Drive On Tipp at the third bend with Clonbrien still a close third.

Typical Ash was now beginning a drive from the back. Kilgraney Ace powered home a six length winner in 29.70 from Drive On Tipp. Typical Ash got up to deny Clonbrien Hero of third by three parts of a length.



Slippery Louise failed to produce her best form in the early rounds of the Derby, but she came roaring back to form in the opening heat of the Plate.

Larry Dunne’s strong running daughter of Brett Lee and Kildallon Maid came away racing from the outside box and had enough pace to clear Dream Mover at the turn.

The order never changed thereafter, although Dream Mover did stay on well to get close on the run in. Slippery Louise dug deep, however, staying on well to hold her rival by three parts of a length in 29.74. Dream Mover was three and a half lengths ahead of Ballymac Galway.

Milltown Magic continued his rise to prominence in Heat 2 of the Plate when making virtually every inch for Willie Rigney and Peter Cronin. The relatively lightly raced son of Droopys Scolari and China Doll came away well and was soon in charge at the head of affairs.

Postman Sam recovered from a tardy start to go second down the far side and looked threatening entering the third turn, but he had the door closed on him by the leader and found little more on the run in. This allowed Milltown Magic to claim a third career victory by a length and a half in 30.15. Elusive Heights finished fast to sit just a short head behind Postman Sam in third.

The Plate then resumed after the last of the Derby heats and fifteen minutes after Kilgraney Ace had done his blistering run in the final heat, Tom Buggy completed a rapid-fire double as Kilgraney Denver (Kinloch Brae/ Lady Kilgraney) won Heat 3 for his sister Rosemary. Cometwopass led out of traps as anticipated but Kilgraney Denver, from an unfavourable two trap, moved second halfway to the bend .


Cometwopass continued to carve out the running but Kilgraney closed into the third bend, while Lisnastrane Gold was making rapid progress in behind. Lisnastrane was cut off on the third bend and Kilgraney headed Cometwopass on the run-in.

But Kilgraney was forced to dig deep to hold the late rally of Lisnastrane Gold by a head in 29.99 with Cometwopass a length and a half third.

There was another thrilling finish to Heat 4 where the complexion of the race took on a different look at the opening bend. Budgie Marbh led out but Tyrur Hugo just led him into the bend where the two dogs collided and Tyrur Hugo came off worst. The Paul Hennessy trained Budgie Marbh (Royal Impact/ Ardera Aisling) now led by a length and a half from Fast Fit Alex with Tyrur in third.

Fast Fit Alex challenged for the lead at the third bend and the two dogs were neck and neck around the bottom. But Budgie Marbh stayed on resolutely and resisted Fast Fit Alex by three parts of a length. It was three and a half lengths back to Slippery Billy which got up in the final stride to deprive an unlucky Tyrur Hugo of the third qualifying spot by a short head.

A first bend dust-up was a major factor in the final heat where Produce Stakes finalist Ballybough Dad saw his length and a half lead increase to five lengths as the rest of the field were involved. Main sufferers were the well fancied Minor Mike and Droopys Payet.

Once the Murt Leahy trained Ballybough Dad (Ballymac Vic/ High St Miley) led into the back by that margin there was no way that Par Carroll’s dog was going to be beaten. But fair play to veteran Jaytee Jet for his brave effort which saw him go second at halfway and he got to within a length and a half at the line in 30.04 with Alien Tears four and a half lengths third.  



Once again Clares Rocket was the star performer when the second round of the BoyleSports Irish Derby reached a conclusion at Shelbourne on Saturday.

The brilliant tracker flew from traps and ran out a very easy six and a half length winner in a time of 29.15 which was one spot faster than his run of the previous week.

Kennel companions Clonbrien Glory and Droopys Cabaye made it another treble in the Derby heats for trainer Graham Holland. There was also a superb performance from Tom Buggy’s Kilgraney Ace as he won his heat in 29.36.


Laurels and Produce Stakes champion Clonbrien Hero maintained his unbeaten record in the competition when displaying real quality as he saw off the eye-catching Loskeran Vardy in Heat 9.

The massively talented son of Razldazl Jayfkay and Trout Or Salmon came away reasonably well and soon moved through the gears to join the fast starting Skywalker Manner at the turn. Carrying the better momentum, Clonbrien Hero swept to the front on the turn and entered the back straight two and a half lengths to the good.

At this point Loskeran Vardy shot into second spot and quickly reduced the leader’s advantage to a length and a half by the third turn. Clonbrien Hero is seeing out the 550yd trip strongly, however, and he maintained his lead to cross the line with a length and a half to spare over the gallant Loskeran Vardy in a superb 29.41. Skywalker Manner chased the pair home in third, a further five lengths adrift.


Tyrur Harold gave a clear indication of his undoubted brilliance in Heat 10 when emerging a magnificent winner despite fluffing his lines at traps.

PJ Fahy’s son of Tullymurry Act and Badminton Girl was understandably installed a hot favourite, but his supporters would have been concerned in the early yards as he was headed by both Cometwopass and Clona Kid.

Importantly for Harold, however, he held off Kilgraney Denver to turn third. Cometwopass seem to clip the rail between the opening two bends, allowing Clona Kid to challenge as they entered the back straight, but in truth both were now sitting ducks. Once straightening up, Tyrur Harold started to close and by halfway he was almost on terms.

By the third turn, Tyrur Harold was in front and he quickly put daylight between himself and his pursuers. It was a wonderful display from Harold as he emerged a comfortable three length winner in 29.68. Clona Kid clung on for second ahead of the advancing Jaytee Jet by a short head.


It looked an open race in advance and it certainly proved to be just that with the lead changing on a few occasions and the first three covered by less than a length at the line.

First to show was Toolmaker Obama and he led around the corner from Ballymac Galway.

The two of them were neck and neck into the back with Milldean Skip and Pension Plan in pursuit. Toolmaker Obama was baulked at the third bend and then Ballymac Galway was the meat in the sandwich coming off the last bend as the improving Pension Plan moved wide and joined Milldean Skip. It was desperately close on the race to the line and the photo showed that Milldean Skip (Superior Product/ Borna Girl) had prevailed by a neck in 30.07. The flying finisher Droopys Tee got up for second and it was just a short head to Pension Plan in third. Milldean Skip is trained by Marie Gilbert for the M&H Racing Syndicate.    


Clares Rocket (Confident Rankin/ Lemon Madrid) was a red-hot favourite for this contest and he didn’t his supporters an anxious moment.

He came away fast from six while his neighbour in five Slippery John walked out. But the Graham Holland trained Rocket led up comfortably from Jaytee Yankee, Dorotas Wildcat and Hovex Mick.

Dorotas Wildcat moved up to dispute second with Jaytee Yankee down the back but Clares Rocket was clear up front and the Full House Syndicate owned tracker was clearly not going to be caught. Jaytee Yankee checked between the third and fourth bends and lost his place with Hovex Mick now moving up on the outside. While Clares Rocket raced away for a six and a half length verdict, Hovex Mick took second and he was three and a half lengths clear ok Dorotas Wildcat which had a neck to spare over Jaytee Yankee. The winning time was 29.15 which was one spot faster than his brilliant first round effort.


Tom Buggy’s Kilgraney Ace (Scolari Me Daddy/ Kilgraney Poppy) is a trap six specialist and he certainly used his draw to perfection in winning this contest.

He broke well but it was Black Farren while led up from Droopys King and Kilgraney Ace. Brinkleys Blaze broke slowly and was at the back of the field racing to the bend.

Kilgraney Ace moved second between the opening bends and he then went past Black Farren into the third bend. Maintaining a wide course around the bottom bends he still kept increasing his lead and raced home three lengths in front of Black Farren in a smashing time of 29.36. Higher Level came with her typical late finish to take third place another five lengths back.


The draw made this qualifier look a tricky contest and again it proved to be a very troublesome affair and we had a shock victory for Pauline Quinn’s Drumsna Star (Boherbradda Mac/ Royal Kate) in 30.02.

Kilmessan Gold was fast away and led up but the slow starting Sab Miller displayed fine early pace to challenge into the first bend. 

The two dogs bumped and suddenly Drumsna Star shot to the front from Rockybay Rover with Inky Holdem now an improving third. Rockybay Rover closed into the third bend and challenged turning for home with Inky was making ground just in behind. It was a very close finish but Drumsna Star prevailed by a head from Rockybay Rover with Inky Holdem just three parts of a length third.


The classic is going along very well for Graham Holland and he had a further heat winner when Droopys Cabaye (Tullymurry Act/ Droopys Solange) turned in a smashing performance in winning Heat 15.

It was Concrete Jungle which broke best and led from Droopys Cabaye and Drumsna Legend. The other three runners had a bumping match on the bend.

Owned by Larry O’Rourke, Droopys Cabaye ran a very impressive bend to go past Concrete Jungle and set off for home. He was two and a half lengths in front around the bottom bends and he stretched that advantage to three and a half by the line in a time of 29.51. Drumsna Legend finished strongly to beat Concrete Jungle by half a length for second place.


The night ended with another upset as the raging hot favourite Whoops Jack made a mess of the start and he was at the back of the field racing to the bend.

Swords Pepe made a flying start and he had a lead of four lengths on the second bend with Ballymac Sarahjo in second and Killeshil Jack now in third.

Swords Pepe has stamina limitations and Ballymac Sarahjo (Ballymac Vic/ Starwood Bound) was being shouted a winner at halfway as she began to close the gap. She was forced to check between the final bends and had to relaunch her challenge on the outside of the leader turning for home. Killeshil Jack was now a closing third but on the run for the line Liam Dowling’s Ballymac Sarahjo hit the front and won by half a length from Killelshil Jack in 29.95 with Swords Pepe two lengths third.



The fastest time recorded in the first session of the second round of the BoyleSports Irish Derby was produced by Good News as he clocked 29.49 in winning Heat 7 but the star of the night was surely fastest first round winner Sonic as he produced an amazing recovery to get up very late to beat Jaytee Barracuda in Heat 5 in 29.62.

One of the big talking points of the night was the success of Ronnie Craven’s rank outsider Lolos Framptons in 29.70 and his success saw the Trio pay a whopping €818.10 for a €1 stake.


Me Phat Daddy displayed all his qualities to kick off the second round with a superb success.

Owned by the Glamour Paws Syndicate, the son of Scolari Me Daddy and Lemon Rita was ideally housed in the red jacket and after a fast start he dominated throughout.

Sidarian Fern was soon his nearest pursuer, but at no point did she look like closing the gap on the leader. Instead Me Phat Daddy stayed on far better than last week to extend his advantage in the closing yards. At the line he had four and a half lengths to spare in a fast 29.65. Impressive Guy was the same gap away in third.


Brendan Keogh’s Burnt Beans displayed both superb pace and determination to win the second heat over some fancied rivals.

The Ian Reilly trained son of Godsend and Highview Juli has wonderful early speed and he used it to great effect, powering into the turn to assert from the favourite Drive On Tipp, who was forced to check wide.

With Drive On Tipp losing momentum, Native Chimes took his chance to emerge as the main threat to Burnt Beans. Native Chimes really moved through the gears down the back straight to move second at halfway before closing right up on the leader into the third turn. Burnt Beans looked a sitting duck at this point, but he rallied on the run in to repel Native Chimes by a length and a half in 29.56. Drive On Tipp followed the pair home in third, a further three parts of a length adrift.     

Heat 3 – LOLO A 33-1 SHOCKER

This year’s Derby has certainly provided plenty of wining favourites, but the bookmakers were the real winners in Heat 3 as 33-1 rank outsider Lolos Framptions produced the performance of his relatively short career to emerge a good winner for his owner, Ronnie Craven.

The son of Kinloch Brae and Lolos Ferrari was prominent in the opening yards alongside Jaytee Dutch, but when the latter ran off the turn, Lolos Framptons found himself clear of his rivals into the back straight. Javielenko moved second, but he failed to hold Minor Mike, who in turn was clipped from behind.

While all this was going on, Lolos Framptons was bounding along as happy as could be out front. Maintaining a strong gallop all the way to the line, the August ’15 whelp eventually saw off the fast finishing Droopys De Rossi by six and a half lengths in 29.70. Javielenko eventually saw off Minor Mike for third, a length behind De Rossi. 


Typical Ash, owned by the Secret Service Syndicate, backed up a wonderful opening round effort in the fourth heat to maintain his unbeaten record in the competition.

The Gerry Holian trained son of Droopys Scolari and Typical Pearl was soon in a prominent position and he displayed more early dash than his rivals to lead around the turn.

Kiss And Hug and Droopys Payet gave chase, but there was no catching the leader and he powered on to eventually win by seven lengths in 29.64, while the evergreen Cable Bay finished with a flourish to take second, a length and a half to the good over the fading Kiss And Hug.


After a sensational 29.12 in the opening round, Sonic had to work considerably harder in Heat 5 as he came from what seemed a near impossible position to lead in the dying strides.

Not surprisingly Buckos Dream set the pace once clearing the fast starting Crinkill Jake on the corner, but he was never far enough clear of Jaytee Barracuda or Sonic as it transpired.

Sonic was only fourth into the turn and edging inwards he took a bump from Chawke It Down. This left Marion Maloney’s brilliant son of Knockglass Billy and Vickis Dream with a mountain to climb. Up front Buckos Dream continued to dictate, but he was challenged at the third turn by Jaytee Barracuda which led for home. But at this stage Sonic was absolutely flying in behind and the Graham Holland trained tracker got his nose ahead on the line for a head verdict over Jaytee Barracuda in 29.62. Buckos Dream was some three lengths third.


Swithins Brae went to traps the tight favourite for this contest but he didn’t make the best of starts and it was Droopys Noah which got away best and he led up from a tightly grouped field which was headed early by Budgie Marbh.

But everything changed on the bend where the John Linehan trained Droopys Noah (Ballymac Eske/ Droopys Hilda) shot around and there was some crowding in behind. Offshore Point showed second entering the back with Swithins Brae in third and then it was three lengths back to Beannacht Tagdh.

Owned by the Ryan/ Drake/ Donovan Syndicate, Droopys Noah maintained his gallop all the way to the line where he had two lengths in hand of Swithins Brae in 29.54. It was then a length to the strong finishing Beannacht Tagdh in third.


The betting on this contest found it difficult to separate Good News and Dream Dude and racing to the bend the two of them were also locked together with Jaytee President between them.

On the bend Dream Dude drifted wide and the Pat Guilfoyle trained Good News (Definate Opinion/ Pippy) was through in a flash to take it up and he led by a few lengths into the back from Hey Bound.

Good News is a strong stayer and the Sandra Guilfoyle and Mary Kennedy owned dog now showed his pace as he eased clear down the far side as he eased clear and had victory sealed a long way out. By the line his advantage had grown to eight lengths over Hey Bound in a best of the night 29.49. There was then a length back to Lemon Pete which got up on the line to pip Tyrur Hugo by a short head for the third spot.


The punters had taken a few blows during the night but in the last race they had one of their bankers in the Alfie Herbert trained British challenger Fweshfromthesesh and he did them proud.

Saunders Dash shot out of traps and led early from Droopys Harbour and an improving Fweshfromthesesh.

Fweshfromthesesh (David Bale/ Lissivigeen Joy) shot to the front on the bend and was followed by Fast Fit Alex with Droopys Harbour in third after being crowded on the corner. Fast Fit Alex challenged hard to the third bend but Fweshfromthesesh closed the door at this point and Droopys Harbour moved second. She ran on hard but couldn’t catch Fweshfromthesesh which won by a length from Droopys Harbour in 29.80 with Fane Sioux three lengths third.



It was another great night at Shelbourne on Saturday night as the first round of the BoyleSports Irish Derby was concluded.

There was never any real possibility of Thursday’s sensational times being repeated but Graham Holland did supply a 29.35 winner as Drive On Tipp was most impressive in winning Heat 14.

Paul Hennessy was the trainer to follow and he supplied a great treble thanks to the great efforts of the Jaytee trio of Yankee, Dutch and Jet.


Champion Stakes winner Jaytee Yankee (Droopys Jet/ Basket Of Trumps) was understandably installed a warm favourite for the first of the night’s heats, but he did have to work hard for victory as Droopys Payet set a strong pace in the turn.

Burnt Beans flew into the bend to challenge Droopys Payet, but the pair clashed. That allowed John Turner’s Jaytee Yankee, who had been moderately into stride by his own standards, to move second. Suddenly he found himself on the rail entering the back straight and in a challenging position behind Droopys Payet.

Down the back straight the Paul Hennessy trained Jaytee Yankee quickly moved into top stride and he shot up the fence to take over from Droopys Payet at the third turn. Once doing so he quickly opened a race winning advantage and proceeded to cross the line a length and a half to the good over Droopys Payet in 29.71. Burnt Beans ran well after the opening bend trouble to finish a length away in third. Brinkleys Blaze finished well for fourth.


Just fifteen minutes later Paul Hennessy and John Turner teamed up again to complete a quick double with the ever-green Jaytee Dutch coming home clear of Offshore Point in Heat 12. This was an exciting contest.

Jaytee Dutch took a flier from trap two to lead the field into the corner, but at this point he was joined on both sides by the advancing Offshore Point and Collage Paradise. The latter checked off the second turn badly before going lame immediately after.

Now Offshore Point, who is renowned for his early dash, was in front, but Jaytee Dutch was stalking him in second. The result was inevitable thereafter. As Offshore Point began to run out of steam on the run in, Jaytee Dutch launched a decisive challenge. Coming home fast, the brilliant son of Droopys Scolari and Chin Gach Gook charged to the front on the run in to beat Offshore Point by a length and a half in 29.81. Drumsna Sat was another two lengths back in third.


Fresh from his exploits in the early rounds of the Bar One Irish sprint Cup, the Pat Buckley trained Concrete Jungle made the most of an ideal rails draw to come home in front in Heat 13 despite the persistent challenge of Sidarian Fern.

Concrete Jungle, owned jointly by Thomas and Oisin O’Connor, came away racing to dispute the lead into the turn with Sidarian Fern, while the remaining runners were left a little flat footed. Those behind ran into problems at the turn leaving the front two a mile clear.

Entering the back straight Sidarian Fern held a narrow lead, but Concrete Jungle moved to the front at the third turn and he increased his lead to a length as they turned for home. Concrete Jungle never took his foot off the pedal on the run in and he hit the line with a length vf to spare over Sidarian Fern in 29.65. Beannacht Tagdh ran a big race in third, finishing fast to be a length and a half third.


As with his kennel companions Sonic and Clares Rocket two nights previous, the Graham Holland trained Drive On Tipp emerged a facile winner to justify favouritism in Heat 14.

Larry O’Rourke had been on the mark with Droopys Cabaye on Thursday and Drive On Tipp completed his first round double in easy fashion.

The talented son of Droopys Scolari and Mohane Patient flashed from trap two and was always in complete command once doing so. Stefans Wee Bro gave chase in the early stages, but he had no answer to the pace and power of Drive On Tipp, who pulled right away to eventually win by six and a half lengths in a brilliant 29.35. Velvet John Joe finished well to grab second spot on the line, beating Stefans Wee Bro by a short head.


It had the appearance of being a good night for the team of Paul Hennessy and owner John Turner and it certainly turned out that way.

The evergreen Jaytee Jet (Droopys Scolari/ Chin  Gach Gook) completed the treble when coming with a typical late run to win narrowly in 29.68.

Milldean Skip flew out of the inside box but the fancied Pension Plan broke slowly along with Calico Brandy and Theres The Bell. Cometwopass showed the superior early pace to lead into the bend from Milldean with Jaytee Jet in third. That remained the order to the run-in where Milldean Skip hit the front but Jaytee Jet was too close and he flew up the outside to win by a length in 29.68 from Milldean Skip and it was just three parts of a length to Cometwopass in third.


Peter Cronin opened his Derby account with a very solid performance from Swithins Brae (Kinloch Brae/ Full Of Beans) as he led all the way before stopping the clock in 29.61.

He led to the bend from Chawke It Down and Vancouver Shea but the latter was baulked on the bend and that ended his classic hopes.

Swithins led into the back by two and a half lengths from Chawke It Down but the leader’s kennel companion Milltown Magic moved second before the third corner, while Minor Mike was making significant progress in behind. Swithins went on to win by two and a half lengths for the Swithins Syndicate while Minor Mike stormed home to pip Milltown Magic by half a length for second.


The complexion of this contest changed dramatically on the opening bend with Kilgraney Denver and Kilmessan Gold disputing the lead to the bend but the two dogs bumped with Kilmessan Gold the biggest sufferer.

Kilgraney lost his momentum and in a flash the Gerry Holian trained Typical Ash, which was a close third into the corner, shot around the outside to show in front early in the back straight.

From here Typical Ash (Droopys Scolari/ Typical Pearl) was in total control and he stretched out to win by six and a half lengths in 29.73. Kilgraney Denver held off a rallying Fast Fit Alex, which checked on the third bend, by a length and a half for third.


Ian Reilly’s Dream Dude (Kisses For Cloda/ Greenbanks Kitty) has become a real Saturday night banker for punters at Shelbourne and he justified his short odds with a decisive victory in Heat 18 in 29.60.

Just five went to traps with Away Jet an absentee and Dream Dude broke fast from six and led up from Droopys Wilbury and Me Phat Daddy which battle for second spot.

Me Phat Daddy took a bump on the bend and Droophs Wilbury became a clear second. but all of five lengths adrift of the leader. Owned by Gavin Johns, Dream Dude remained in control and won by three and a half lengths from Wilbury. Rockybay Rover finished fast to take third spot some four lengths back.


We had a cracking contest in Heat 19 where victory went to PJ Fahy’s lightly raced Tyrur Hugo which was actually opening his winning account in his sixth ever start.

The son of Godsend and Tyrur Monica showed great early pace to lead into the bend from Lemon Pete and Sab Miller. The latter ran wide on the bend and crashed into Calico Blackjack.

At halfway Tyrur Hugo held a five length lead from Lemon Pete but the latter began to edge closer as they approached the third bend. The leader was fading on the run-in and he was challenged on either side by Sab Miller and Lemon Pete. The judge was called on to decide and the decision by a short head went to Tyrur from Sab Miller in 29.84. Lemon Pete was just a neck adrift in third.


Redzer Rocco was an absentee in the concluding heat of the round and so just five went to traps and the favourite was the champion stayer Airmount Tess which looked ideally housed in the inside trap. Tess duly flew out but she was then outpaced to the bend as Buckos Dream raced up in front from Fwesthfromthesesh.

Buckos Dream (Superior Product/ Dalcash Dvinsky) was clear into the back from Fweshfromthesesh while Airmount Tess was challenged for third by Shugabear Barber. The Michael O’Donovan trained Buckos Dream was fading on the run-in but he held off Fweshfromthesesh by three parts of a length in 29.71 with Airmount Tess another four lengths back in third.



The Boylesports Irish Derby got off to a terrific start at Shelbourne Park on Thursday night when the Graham Holland stars Sonic and Clares Rocket claimed the plaudits with two sensational performances as they stopped the clock in near record times of 29.12 and 29.16.

It was yet another huge night for trainer Holland at the Ringsend venue as he completed a four-timer in the Derby heats while he also won a supporting contest to bring his tally to the night to five winners. His other Derby winners were Droopys Cabaye in 29.63 and Clonbrien Hero in 29.65.

The other big star from the Derby action was PJ Fahy’s Tyrur Harold as he led all the way in Heat 5 and stopped the clock in 29.46 when leading home Toolmaker Obama.


John Kelleher and Pat Norton’s Native Chimes got favourite backers off to a flying start, although he didn’t have the easiest of passages in the early stages.

Skywalker Manner, Fennis Buzz and Ballybough Dad battled for the early lead with native Chimes sitting in behind them after being forced to check slightly on the run up.

It was at the turn that the race started to take shape. Skywalker Manner and Fennis Buzz went around locked in battle, but importantly the Johnny O’Sullivan trained Native Chimes got a clear run into the back straight to move third.

Skywalker Manner asserted down the back straight, but when Native Chimes powered his way into second before the third turn the writing was on the wall. As expected Native Chimes closed on the leader to the final turn and switching wide he launched a decisive challenge on the run in.

In a tight finish, Native Chimes (Premier Fantasy/ Native Gypsy) got up late to beat the gallant Skywalker Manner by a head in 29.69. Black Truffle was four lengths away third.

 Heat 2 - A SONIC BOOM

After returning to form in recent weeks, Sonic produced the performance of his career in the second heat when leaving his rivals standing in the second heat as he clocked a scarcely believable 29.12.

It was evident from the opening stride that Sonic was going to produce something special as he shot from trap six to make every inch.

Good News, his great rival in the betting, was second into the turn but took a couple of hefty bumps.

This left Sonic to enter the back straight with a commanding advantage and he continued to pile on the pressure for the remainder. Pulling further and further clear, the brilliant son of Knockglass Billy and Vickis Dream hit the winning line with ten lengths in hand on Good News. Slippery Billy was a further five lengths away in third.


Droopys Cabaye gave Graham Holland his third winner of the night and his second in the heats when coming home clear in Heat 3.

Only third into the turn, he drove the bend to sweep past Clona Kid and Postman Sam.

Once doing so the result was never in question. Maintaining a strong gallop throughout, Larry O’Rourke’s Droopys Cabaye came home two and a half lengths to the good over the strong finishing  Lisnastrane Gold in 29.67. Postman Sam chased the pair home in third. 


Sent to traps a long odds-on favourite, Tyrur Harold gave an exhibition of front running despite a potentially tricky draw in the stripes.

PJ Fahy’s brilliant son of Tullymurry Act and Badminton Girl never had a moments worry.

Making a fast start, the May ’15 whelp was clear of his rivals before the turn and he drew right away to emerge a comfortable six and a half length and a length winner over Toolmaker Obama and Ballymac Sarahjo in a very quick 29.46.


Already the winner of the BIF Produce Stakes and the Irish Independent Irish Laurels, Clonbrien Hero made the perfect start on his first race at Shelbourne when he led all the way to win Heat 5 in 29.65.

Kay Murphy’s son of Razldazl Jayfkay and Trout Or Salmon broke fast from the inside and moved to his right on the run up. He led around the bend from Jumeirah Bran but Kranky Mark soon took up the chase.

The Graham Holland trained Clonbrien Hero never looked like conceding and ran on strongly to win by three lengths in 29.65. Cahir Castle produced a big finish to take second, three parts of a length in front of Kranky Mark.


Heat six was a very open looking contest but Droopys Noah went off the strong favourite with his inside draw.

However Jaytee President had other ideas and shot out of trap three, leading up from Slippery Louise. Killeshil Jack moved second on the bend and moved wide, carrying Slippery with him.

Down the far side Killeshil Jack and Slippery Louise disputed second but the John Turner owned, Paul Hennessy trained Jaytee President was out front and making the best of his way home. Slippery Louise moved second again on the final bend and, despite running very wide turning for home, the Paul Hennessy trained Jaytee President raced on to win by a length and a half from Droopys Noah in 30.06 with Slippery John three lengths back in third.


Ante post favourite Clares Rocket (Confident Rankin/ Lemon Madrid) went off a1-4 favourite for Heat 7 and he didn’t his followers any anxious moments.

The dog trained by Graham Holland for the Full House Syndicate broke fast from six and immediately showed in front from Lolos Framptons and Coolavanny Mason.

There was a coming together on the bend and all it served to do was to accentuate Clares Rocket’s domination of the race. With every stride he increased his advantage and raced home a sixteen length winner from Inky Holdem in 29.16 with Lolos Framptons two lengths third.


This  was a very open race from a betting viewpoint but it didn’t quite work out that way as the Ian Reilly trained Crinkill Jake (Scolari Me Daddy/ Criniill Smiler) flew out of the inside trap and raced clear to the bend.

Slippery Louise was second on the bend but Killeshil Jack got up her inside and moved wide. They brought Jaytee Barracuda with them and the Brendan Keogh trained Crinkill Jake was away and gone. He strode home a five and a half length winner from Slippery Louise in 30.06 and it was a length to Killeshil Jack in third.


The Kevin Hutton trained Dorotas Wildcat (Ballymac Vic/ Droopys Danneel) became the first British trained heat winner in the classic when leading virtually all the way in Heat 9.

He wasn’t the first to hit the ground but he quickly showed in front and led Sellout Magic and Karlow Crean around the bend.

Hovex Mick moved second early in the back and was five lengths off the leader. A very strong runner, Hovex Mick ran on strongly but failed by a length to overhaul Dorotas Wildcat in 29.62 with Sellout Magic some six and a half lengths third.


The final heat proved to be a very messy affair with Nitro Notorious leading narrowly to the bend from Swords Pepe and Droopys King.

There was a melee on the corner which saw Nitro Notorious hit the deck and Droopys King shot clear into the back.

However the Robert Gleeson trained Droopys De Rossi was in second and he sprouted wings to cut down the lead and hit the front between the bottom bends. Droopys Dr Rossi then stormed clear for an eight length winning margin over Droopys King in 29.69 with Homeless Darkie three lengths third.



Making the Draw for the 2017 BoyleSports Greyhound Derby was Leon Blanch Head of Communications BoyleSports and Declan Carey Racing Manager Shelbourne Park.                                                                                         Pic: Imelda Grauer