The Punter: Makeshift has what it takes to Blitz Irish Greyhound Derby opposition
It's getting harder for all concerned as the Ladbrokes.com Irish Greyhound Derby enters the third round stage, eight heats of which will be run off at Shelbourne Park on Saturday night.
Heading the betting market is Farley Blitz at a best price of 8-1 in view of what looks a relatively easy heat for the Owen McKenna-trained black flier and which sees him coming up against the only northern-based runner, Blazers Black from the Crumlin kennels of Pat McCloskey.
There are several outstanding performers in this Classic, not least Makeshift trained by Dolores Ruth. This well bred white and black son of 2006 Derby winner Razldazl Billy has never been out of the first three in 14 of his 19 races which includes nine victories.
Like his sire, Makeshift has also won the Champion Stakes and must have a marvellous chance of going all the way at a tasty price of 10-1. He is the fastest in the competition so far, albeit only one spot quicker than Farley Blitz.
He proved better than Farley in the Champion Stakes final and has also beaten other major Derby contenders such as Tyrur Big Mike and Mesedo Blue.
For me, Makeshift is the one they all have to beat and he should take heat six from trap three with Tyrur McGuigan likely to chase him home.
Saturday's second round: Heat one: Kinda Ready; Burn Em Up; Thurlsbeg Joker; Tyrur Richie; Millie Marina; Clonkeen Stan.Heat two: Razldazl Lord; Tyrur Bucko; Fatboyz Tyson; Mesedo Blue; Westmead Grant; Jonny Whitesox.Heat three: Definate Opinion; Jim Said So; Colourful Champ; Tyrur Bike Mike; Cookies Fantasy; Monleek Bay.Heat four: Highview Shadow; Dream Walker; Whatsupjack; Cabra Legend; Hats My Boy; Krug Ninety Five.Heat five: Local Dee Jay; Tullymurry Act; Freedom Seacrest; Forest Rover; Farley Turbo; Dromore Hero.Heat six: Hare Mack; Wise Signal; Makeshift; Ballymac Under; Killacolla Glory; Tyrur McGuigan.Heat seven: Oran Jaguar; Tyrur Enda; Hipower Turbo; Lassa Extreme; Ballymac Tipp, Barefoot Bullet. Heat eight: Air Force Hawk; Blazers Black; Foyle Storm; Farley Blitz; Shaneboy Flash; Monlesa Alsation. Derby betting: 8-1 Farley Blitz; 10-1 Makeshift; 12-1 Colourful Champ, Tyrur Big Mike; 14-1 Thurlesbeg Joker, Farley Tubo; Tullymurry Act; 20-1 Definate Opinion, Tyrur Enda; 25-1 Mesedo Blue, Razldazl Lord; 28-1 Barefoot Bullet, Fatboyz Tyson; 33-1 bar.