Paul's eyes are on the big prize
Derry's Paul Ellis and his Farloe Blitz are one step away from £250,000 in the William Hill Greyhound Derby at Wimbledon next Saturday night.
Blitz lived up to his name in the semi-finals, maintaining his unbeaten Derby record with a superb 28.24 victory, crossing the line a length and a half in front of Rio Quattro and track record holder Eden The Kid.
The son of Premier Fantasy, trained by Tipperary's Owen McKenna, was at his brilliant best from trap two, quickly into his stride and never seriously challenged in crossing the line a length and a half clear of Rio Quattro in 28.24 with Eden The Kid another neck back in third.
And there is a local interest in the other semi-final winner, the 16/1 outsider Making Paper who was bred by Crumlin's Jim Hynes. The black son of Jim's bitch Quarterland Hope was also quick away from trap two, beating Millwards Davy three and a half lengths in 28.33. Another Irish contender, Tynwald Bish, was third, a head in front of Paradise Maverik who along with Lenson Sanchez, one of two handled by Pat Buckley, made their exit.
Farloe is now 4/5 to lift the biggest greyhound prize in the world and if doing so, will be the first Irish winner since Loyal Honcho seven years ago. Once more Blitz wears the blue sheet (trap two) and that's ideal judging on his last two displays from this box. The line-up is : 1: Rio Quattro; 2: Farloe Blitz; 3: Making Paper; 4: Eden The Kid; 5: Millwards Davy; 6: Tynwald Bish
Ballydoyle Honey proved she's one of the best bitches of all time with a superlative victory in the €25,000 Sporting Press Irish Oaks at Shelbourne Park. The fastest ever bitch around the Dublin track, she and litter sister Hovex Princess gave Cashel trainer Graham Holland a one-two.
At Drumbo, Tommy McArevey's Laika George just held on by a short head from Big Blue Sky to take the £500 Dual-Distance final over 575 yards (32.18).