By Mark Pierrepont
Regular readers of this column will be hoping for a change of fortune at Nottingham tonight.
The A2 at 6.47pm looks a tough race at first glance but draws win races and they don’t come much better than the make up that Lynn Cook’s Fridays Artist (NEXT BEST) has out wide in trap 6. Yet to win at A2 level he’s a strong running sort who also has a fair bit of early pace. The make up of tonight’s race couldn’t have fell much better. Gain Control see’s himself removed from the trap 3 berth which he’s occupied for his last two races and moved across to the orange jacket. Only once previously has this dog been asked to race from orange and he was looking to edge in all the way up the run up allowing the six dog on that occasion a complete solo around the outside of the track. With crowding likely amongst the inside runners , Artist can turn into the back straight in a menacing position and can run out a ready winner.
Last week’s NAP goes down in the ‘desperate’ category but when it comes to getting paid out that becomes irrelevant. I’m prepared to give the Lynn Cook trained Bromwich Eske (NAP) another chance in the A3 at 7.05pm. He was narrowly prevented from turning in front last Monday , had he done so he’d have been a 5 length winner , of that I have no doubt. If anything tonight’s race is probably a little easier than last weeks affair. There’s no Brae Best moving off from trap 4 this week to give him a solo to the bend , however Sandyhill Diana steps into fill that slot. Diana has been running regularly from trap 5 lately but is moved into the four box this evening , slow away and lacking early pace at the best of times , she’s likely to give Eske as much room as he needs on the run to the turn. He’s a short price favourite to turn in front and if doing so there should be no excuses , especially with last weeks run under his belt for fitness.
It’s the Greyhound Media Group Standard Trophy at 7.36pm. This is a big step down in class for the David Pruhs trained La Soldado (TREBLE). He’ll have to be alert at the traps but if he comes away on terms he has the early pace to turn in front , if doing so he’ll not be for catching.
It’s the G&T Race over 730m at 8.08pm and Pat Rosney’s Looking Sharp looks set to take all the beating. Running brilliantly throughout the William Hill Grand Prix at Sunderland recently , a running on second in both her heat and semi final before finishing a creditable 6 length 5th in the final itself.
Competing against the likes of Star Sports English Derby Finalist Bombers Bullet in the final of that competition , those kind of dogs are always going to have that little bit much in the way of early pace for Sharp to contend with. This 730m trip however looks as if it should be ideal. Short running types that are tempted by the usual six bend distances are a lot less likely to gamble on the testing 730m trip and this can see Sharp putting herself into contention earlier than would usually be the case. This is a bitch capable of giving a track record a shake when getting to the front early over this sort of trip.
The Stadium Bookmakers 480m Trophy Final takes place at 9.22pm. Malt Paddy has a draw to die for , berthed out wide in trap 6 with five dogs inside him who all want rails , Paddy looks all set to land tonight’s final in style. He landed a mammoth gamble when running out a 3 1/4 length winner of his heat , with shrewd money reported both at the track and around the country. A level break is all Paddy needs to put himself into contention entering the back straight before taking up the running approaching the third bend at the latest and running out a ready winner.