Shea on the ball with final 1-2 at Drumbo Park
Armagh's Shea Campbell, the much-travelled Irish League striker, provided the two semi-final winners of the Drumcrow Obama@Stud Puppy A3 semi-finals, so it was no surprise to see him land a one-two and pick up £700 in Saturday's decider at Drumbo Park.
Robbies Dazzler and Stefans Dazzler were the standard-bearers and it was the former who was the more fancied at 4/5.
Although beaten out of traps by Pretty Leah, Robbies had the speed to be in front on the inside at the important first turn. He made it round ahead of kennel mate Stefans Dazzler with Ballymartin Bolt and Educate trying to get into the race.
Robbies, a blue dog, like the brindle Stefans, is trained by Hillsborough's Ronnie McKeown. Turning for home it looked for a fleeting moment as if Stefans could make a race for it in the closing stages but it wasn't to be as Robbies had a length and a half to spare in a solid 29.02 secs. Educate took third three lengths further back.
On the same card, a barn-storming finish saw Brendan Magee's Belfast black bitch Dove River snatch the spoils from the favourite Ballymac Gordie in the last race over 550. It looked all over for the latter when he led out from Shes A Mover and held a commanding position down to the third bend where Dove was back in fifth spot.
Turning for home, there was some crowding in behind Gordie but Dove a 4/1 outsider, having her first race since October, powered up the inside and got him in the shadow of the post. The verdict was a neck in 30.48 but Gordie's Magherafelt connections will have been bitterly disappointed he failed to take a race which was at his mercy.