The dust has settled after two great rounds of the Irish Derby at Shelbourne Park.
We have eight heats of the third round to look forward to on Saturday night with qualification the name of the game at this stage.
The most important factor in any race is the trap draw. There is not much that separates these runners so the draw begins to become the main indicator into how each race unfolds.
Tywald Bolt restored his big reputation in round two showing tremendous pace to run out one of the most impressive winners of the second round. He will need to be on his toes early though as he is mad for the rails and his draw in Trap 4 could have been kinder.
The three dogs inside of him have early pace so we could see a barging match on the run up to the opening bends. Stay Thirsty is perfectly housed on the outside and could be the value to nick this race, with a trouble-free run.
This is now a four-dog race after the unfortunate withdrawals of Tyrur Justin and Star Head. Whoever leads in this heat should take the beating, Dusseldorf in Trap 6 has a great draw and the same could be said about Dolores Ruth’s Razldazl Apollo in Trap 4. With her kennel running back into form at the right time, this young dog could still be improving.
Sparta Maestro will be a very short price in this heat and will be looking to confirm his position at the top of the ante-post market. He hasn’t put a foot wrong so far in the competition and has his desired draw in Trap 6. Airforce Diva left her rivals for dead from the trap rise in the second round and connections will be hoping for a similar display of all round pace. Razldazl Luke in Trap 1 is a big price but don’t underestimate his talent and he has the draw to get competitive.
The reining Champion, Razldazl George showed some of his old sparkle last week but will need to continue in that form to make the quarter finals after a tough draw in Trap 5. His main opponents are likely to be the Cesarewitch winner Subway Ruth drawn directly on his inside in Trap 4 and the very exciting early-paced Dragon Shield on his outside, this race will be a cracker!
This is the most interesting and open heat of the third round and we are definitely going to see a major casualty of one of the most-fancied runners. Coolykereen Imp moves to the middle straight from trap rise so he could bump into both Tibetan Skies in Trap 2 and Tyrur Sugar Ray in Trap 3.
I think the best outcome for Tibetan Skies would be to slightly miss the break, as Tyrur Sugar Ray is mad to get across to the rails and will surely tangle with the inside runners. Droopys Cain has been sluggish so far in the competition and needs to up his game, but we all know what an unbelievably fast greyhound he is on his day and should never be ignored
The connections of the current ante-post favourite, Ballymac Vic, will be hoping he can get his starting technique correct as he has fluffed his lines so far. His electric early pace has got him out of bother on both occasions but with the best bitch in the country, Cabra Millie, perfectly house in Trap 1 on his inside there is no room for error.
A race littered with early pace, we can expect fireworks on the crucial run up to the first bend. Confident Rankin has the plot draw in Trap 1 but with Danmar Benny and Razldazl Rioga drawn beside him, it will be a buckle to gain the crucial lead coming out of the second bend. Camas in Trap 6 is one of the most consistent dogs in the competition and he will maintain his wide position throughout the race. If the inside runners tangle, he will pounce and put the race to bed.
A rematch from the second round between Droopys Jet and Skywalker Puma and the former should come out on top with a more favourable draw close to the rails. He checked badly at the third bend last week which gave Skywalker Puma the chance to close rapidly, he needs to not make the same mistake. The fly in the ointment is Razldazl Bugatti as he can lead and could take Droopys Jet ground. This would set the race up perfectly for the fast finishing Skywalker Puma.