Final Greyhound meeting of year at Brandywell Stadium
With the racing having to be cancelled two weeks ago, it looked as if we may have had the last meeting at the track a few weeks ago but thankfully the skies cleared over the weekend and after great work by the ground staff the racing was given the green light to go ahead on Monday night.
Even though it was a cold night, a great crowd of hardy greyhound owners and followers were in attendance at the track for an eight race card with the semi finals of the Paul's Butchers and Track Lotto sponsored sprint the main races on the card.
In the first semi final, ‘Clonalis Farloe’, who was a good first round winner, was the 5/4 favourite to win with ‘Whitey’s Sirjack’ next best at 7/4. However, the bookmakers got a result in this race.
‘Call you tonight’ from trap two had not been breaking well in her last two races but it was a different story this time as ‘Call you Tonight’ flew from the traps and went four lengths clear in the blink of a eye. From there, the lightly raced September bitch never looked in danger, eventually coming home just under five lengths clear in a time of 16.88 for her Letterkenny based owner, Ryan McGranaghan.
‘Clonalis Farloe’ finished second with ‘Shlowdown Rumble’ finishing third also qualifying for the final which will take place in the new year.
In the second semi final, ‘Blackstone Dylan’, who was a decent first round winner, was an uneasy favourite, drifting from 4/6 to evens before the off and although he broke well from his favoured trap one he looked in trouble around the bend when ‘Do it Laylah’ joined him and took the lead.
However, coming into the home straight ‘Do it Laylah’ moved off and this gave ‘Blackstone Dylan’ his chance as he shot up the inside to just about get the upper hand near the line and win by a half a length in a time of 17.05 for local owner Kevin O'Kane.
‘Do it Laylah’ finished second with ‘Mineola at Last’ running on well to finish third and also qualify for the final.
Race two was the Joan Longstaff Memorial Sprint, kindly sponsored by her family and it was ‘Rizeena’ that came out on top. The January ’19 bitch swept around the bend to take the lead and from there she held on well to win for her Letterkenny based owner, Robert Montgomery in a time of 17.19 and at very attractive odds of 7/2 .
The fifth race of the evening was the Nora Watson Memorial, also sponsored by her family and we had a very clear cut winner here. ‘Beano’s Snowflake’ has been running well throughout the year at the track and while she may have been somewhat disappointing in her last race, it was race over early here the June ’20 bitch broke well. Once she led up she just kept pulling clear and the 5/4 favourite eventually won by over seven lengths in a time of 28.15 for Millford based owner, Colm Sweeney.
So, after another fantastic year's racing at Brandywell Stadium and another in 2023 just around the corner, I’d like to finish by wishing a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all our patrons, sponsors, dog owners and spectators who’ve made this year so memorable. Enjoy the festive period and remember, racing resumes on January 9th.