2011 The draw for the first round of the Irish Derby takes place just two days before the first runners go to traps. Razldazl Jayfkay, who had been ante post favourite for the English Derby at 6-1, also heads the market for the Irish equivalent at 10-1.
1990 Advraville Bridge (I’m Slippy-Milltown Gem) confirmed his status as Ireland’s top middle distance runner when adding the Dundalk International to his wins in the Produce Stakes and Irish Laurels.
2010 Tyrur Big Mike is the sponsor’s 16-1 favourite for the Ladbrokes Irish Derby. Eventual winner, litter brother Tyrur McGuigan is available at 80-1.
2008 English Derby winner Loyal Honcho is retired to stud after going lame with recurring shoulder and wrist injuries in the Irish Derby.
1951 Top greyhound paper Greyhound Express returns to its base in Fleet Lane, some two and a half years after the Fleet House building was gutted by fire.
2005 Top Stow open racer Lexington Avenue is killed in a first bend accident at Rye House.
1990 Former Hove runner Leaders Best beat Neills Gold in a classy Irish National Sprint Final at Dunmore. The Michael O’Donovan trained brindle clocked 23.40 with Dublin Bridge in third place.
2010 Droopys Kara (Droopys Woods-Droopys Cheryl), who will prove to be the dam of the 2010 Greyhound of the Year dies of heart failure aged seven. Owned by Keith Roberts, she had thrown Go Big Hitter in her first litter and the outstanding sprinter Jimmy Lollie in her second.
1957 Greyhound Express reminds readers of the dog described as ‘the greatest bluffer of all time’. His name was Honeyman’s Last and he raced in 1929 at Wimbledon. A slow breaking hurdler, Honeyman’s Last won a string of major races including Gold Cup and Wimbledon Perpetual Challenge Trophy. His technique was to catch the leading dog at the third hurdle “and let out a roar like the MGM lion”. Several competitors were put off by the aggressive roar, others like favourite Rathwire in the Gold Cup final were just startled and stumbled as they attempted to jump the hurdle. Interestingly although Honeyman could not be trusted around other dogs, or even be left in a van with one, he never had his card marked or showed any inclination whatsoever to fight.
1946 Owner breeder A J Constantine of Sheffield is not feeling so chipper. In the space of 13 days he had seven puppies die, another two dogs were killed in racing accidents, three were disqualified for fighting (two of them on the same day at different tracks), and another racer escaped from his kennel and hasn’t been seen since.
1961 Clonalvy Pride, beaten favourite in the previous years Laurels final makes no mistake this time around when equalling his own track record in the 500 yard final at Wimbledon. The Jack Harvey trained brindle beat Garbally Airways by three and a half lengths in 27.66. (Wimbledon still record Pigalle Wonder’s 27.58 as the course record even though the time was recorded in a trial). Palms Printer’s attempt at a classic treble, he had already won the English Derby and Scurry ends with disappointment. He finishes with two bruised toes and is scratched from the St Leger first round three nights later. Sadly, he never races again after breaking a hock in a trial at White City two weeks later.
1957 The London Greyhound Tracks committee meet to determine an all-embracing rule to cover events when greyhounds fight in races. Some tracks void the race (rule 45), others apply the first past the post rule, and while disqualifying a fighter, would not forfeit his prize money (45a). The new rule, which will apply to all tracks, allows, in the case of a fighter, the ‘first past the post’ rule to apply on all betting matters, but disqualify the winner in terms of trophies and prize money.
1946 Aldridges Sales announce a record turnover for a greyhound sale. Top lot was the 810 guineas (roughly £29,000 at current values) paid by Nottingham promoter E Jolley for Irish open racer Bold Tan (Mr Jolley could afford it, he would eventually be convicted of fiddling the track’s totalisator). Second highest lot was Easter Cup semi finalist Ballyarthur Border at 790 guineas (£28,000). In fact six lots made over 400gns and 15 were sold between 200gns-400gns. The catalogue also included non-racers including the nine year old open race dam Duna Taxmaid in whelp to Lights of London. There were also six litters. Trainer Sidney Orton was prepared to pay 210 guineas for a 16 month old unraced pup by Ballydancer out of Clonard Fancy who caught his eye; he also brought the two litter mates for a combined 130gns. The more expensive of the trio would eventually be named Quare Customer. As a racer, he would finish runner-up in the 1950 Derby Final before winning the same year’s Cesarewitch and enjoying a lucrative stud career.
2002 GRA offer to review the scheduling of the 2003 Gold Collar following a complaint from owner Harry Findlay. The ’02 scheduling means the runners have to compete four times in nine days (three times in five days) over the 555 metre course.
1957 Wimbledon bookies are not too fussed by the pronunciation of Cnoicatobair, which translates from the Gaelic to ‘well on the hill”. Instead Plough Lane regulars are treated to ‘6-4 Knock it abaht’
1966 Mighty Wind was an unusual graded winner at Enniscorthy. Earlier in his career the five year old had won the Gold Collar.