Saturday sees the return to action of Go Home Hare the Boylesports Derby winner for 2012. The Hare was a popular winner in Powerstown and Derry trainer Dessie Kerrigan has plotted a return to East Donegal as his first stop of the season, as he goes in seach of the prestigious Lifford Gold Cup. Installed as the even money favourite few will look past Go Home Hare. There are a few other dogs though who could prove a fly in the ointment for Kerrigan and The Mel Syndicate.
Cassidys Point- 12/1
Catunda Arthur- 10/1
Yellow Dandy- 6/1
Central Plan- 6/1
Spy Fontaine- 10/1
Gaffney Ranger- 6/1
Likely Treble- 8/1
Cushie Country- 10/1
Go Home Hare- evs
Loyal Land- 12/1
Fifth St Lady- 16/1
Piece of String- 12/1
The return of reigning Boylesports Derby winner Go Home Hare to action this weekend is sure to draw a big crowd to East Donegal as the ‘Hare’ tries to be the first dog since Hilltown to follow up his Derby success with a Champion Stakes victory. The Dessie Kerrigan trained charge was a revelation last season going unbeaten in three outings including Trial Stake success at this meeting 12 months ago. Having been drawn in what would be widely regarded as the more straight forward half, the son of Wallace Green and Inallherglory will take some beating. He’s quoted the Even money favourite by Boylesports.
Likely Treble may be getting on a bit now but he has the form on the Lifford field to make the owners of other dogs in the stake sit up and take notice. Twice a winner and once a finalist on this field, he has taken the scalps of some high profile dogs including Brazing Serpent, Feede Fred and Central City. Whether age has caught up with him remains to be seen but if at his best he could pose a real threat.
The Derby hero may be returning to the scene of his Trial Stake win 12 months ago, but Brendan Duffy owner of Central City, will be in no mood to give up the Gold Cup without (the proverbial) fight. Duffy will bring with him Central Plan a dog twice beaten in Trial Stake finals last term. Having had a slow start to his season last year he picked up some momentum as the year went on and is certainly one to keep an eye on over the course of the weekend.
Best of the rest…
Loyal Land is likely to meet Go Home Hare in the second round. Three weeks ago he was Blueview Sam’s second round opponent in Westmeath. He just can’t catch a break! Gerard Donnelly’s dog was a trial stake winner in Dundalk last season and could give GHH a scare if he makes the second round.
Another interesting contender is Gaffney Ranger a dog who won the second trial stake in Lifford last season. A son of Bexhill Eoin and Chubbys Accord his form on the field makes him an interesting proposition and a live threat to make a final. He won’t get things all his own way against Spy Fontaine though.
Bombshelriapants is the pick of the bitches in the bottom quarter having won a Trial Stake in Crohane just over a year ago. Three run in the All Age bitch stake in Crohane just a couple of weeks ago should have sharpened her up. She is in line for a meeting with Go Home Hare in the semi final should the two progress that far.
Trial Stakes- ones to watch
There are as ever two very competitive Trial Stakes in East Donegal. These are always worth keeping an eye with the Derby winner and top bitches Ravel Glory and Feede Blonde winning here last year. A few worth keeping an eye on are Oughan Star, beaten finalist in the Derby Trial Stake in Loughrea, bitches Hollyhill Marilyn and Wallace Beauty who reached semi finals in Glin and Kilflynn respectively. With this the first meeting in the northern half of the country this season there are likely to be a few interesting pups produced.