Mark Lowther has for many years been one of greyhound racing’s biggest supporters. He has achieved notable success on the track with his runners and he hasn’t been shy in putting a lot of that back into the sport. The Lowther Stakes has quickly established itself as a major entry on the Category 1 calendar and after The Oaks is the bitches only competition that all owners and trainers strive to add to their curriculum vitae.
When Mark began looking for a new home for the competition earlier this year, he’d have been inundated with tracks looking to make the competition their own , Nottingham should be proud that Mark chose their Colwick Park track as the events new venue and I am sure they will be working overtime to ensure that the competitions short but successful history to date continues.
Nottingham director Nathan Corden says “We were taken aback by the number of entries for the first running of The Lowther Stakes at Nottingham. We received 50 entries for the 24 bitch Category 1 competition and the quality of the entries has been unbelievable. Obviously there maybe some disappointed connections , but I’m sure the greyhound racing public will agree it looks like being a top quality competition. We would like to thank Mark Lowther and his company MSCM Limited for their very generous sponsorship.
Oi Oi Upenalty ran magnificently throughout this years Star Sports English Greyhound Derby , reaching the semi final stage before unluckily being eliminated.
Mark Keightley, husband of trainer Hayley said: “Our bitch performed brilliantly throughout her Derby campaign at a track that didn’t suit her at all. It came to an end in the semi final where she picked up quite a serious achilles tendon injury which has kept her sidelined until now. There is no doubt it’s been a little rushed with her preparation to make the Lowther and what you see on her card is basically what we have been able to get done with her.
“The standard 500m trip would be much more to her liking than the 480m but she oozes class and providing we can keep her on the improve for the remainder of the year , I have no doubt in my mind she could eventually dominate the very high quality bitches section. I rate her highly !”
Oi Oi Upenalty has now trialled 3 times around Nottingham , 2 sprint trials of 18.31 (+10) and 1825 (normal) were followed up with a 2857 (+50) trial over the Lowther trip of 480m and she lines up in heat 3 on Monday evening.
Heat 4 of the MSCM Limited sponsored event has to be one of the best bitches races ever staged at Nottingham. Tea For Tess has been expertly trained by her breeder Richard Devenish. Having won the British Bred Puppy Oaks around Romford in 2017 , Tess has a career record of 17 wins from just 29 starts. Tess had previously run just the 2 sprint races around this venue , winning one and falling in the other , prior to running away with a good class 480m open here last Monday.
Piemans Cougar has endured troubled passages on her starts at Nottingham so far , but a couple of good wins around Sheffield advertise this young pups potential.
Queen Adele needs no introduction. The John Lambe trained early paced flying machine has a record of 9 wins from 15 starts , including when going unbeaten throughout this years Bedfordshire Mini Derby at Henlow. Not content with simply going unbeaten throughout that competition , Adele also set new track record figures in heat , semi final and in the final itself. Adele advertised her well being with a 28.64 (+30) trial around Nottingham’s 480m trip last Monday.
The Barrie Draper trained Bull Run Button is developing a fearsome reputation. A winner of the Racing Post Juvenile around Sheffield earlier this year , Button was deemed unlucky by some shrewd judges not to find herself picked for the RPGTV Select Stakes at Nottingham and backed that theory up with a best of trial session 2948 (+40) over 500m when comfortable going faster than some runners who had been chosen by the Select Stakes panel.
Barrie Draper kept his thoughts private but one can imagine his view. Button then ran a game race to win her heat of the RPGTV Oaks on Select night itself , before being pulled out of the final the following week. A step up in trip looked sure to suit and this came at Monmore at the back end of July. Lining up in the Ladbrokes Summer Stayers competition Button runaway with her heat by 4 3/4. Injury was to see her pulled out of her semi final engagement however a 27.85 trial around Sheffields 480m trip followed by a short priced but acceptable defeat over the same course and distance last week in the GMG 3 Steps To Victory advertised her current well being.
The Carl Perry trained Geelo Blissful is a young bitch with unlimited potential. With 7 wins from just 10 career starts including when winning heat and final of the William Hill Angel Of The North recently at Newcastle , she has quickly established herself as one of the leading bitches in training.
Carl said: “Blissful is drawn in a very hot heat but the bitch is running out of her skin. I think she’s up there with the best in the country. This race will be a great test for her but her preparation has been spot on and now I can’t wait for Monday to arrive”. An initial introduction to this course and distance when winning a 2 bitch trial against Airfield Penny by 5 1/4 in 2906 (+10) was bettered in a solo when recording 2863 (+30) last Monday when running the track notably better.
Heather Dimmock’s Donation has long since established herself as one of the fastest and most durable bitches in training. A winner of 21 of her 35 career starts including the Yorkshire Oaks in 2017 , she also won the GMG Oaks around this venue earlier this year. After winning every round of the Coral Sussex Cup last year before succumbing in the final to the gallant Shaneboy Freddie , Donation really is a force to be reckoned with.
Wuheida has been lightly raced this year but after going unbeaten throughout the 2017 GMG Oaks at Belle Vue , including a gutsy performance in terrible conditions in the final , she will be a danger to all for trainer Phil Simmonds , especially since his runners have an excellent winning record around this venue.
They are just some of the runners lining up for what promises to be a high class first running of the Lowther Stakes sponsored by MSCM Limited at Nottingham. A full and complete guide to all of the participants will be available here on The Greyhound Star website on Monday.