By Rob Abrey

Well done to Forest Chunk and Murrys Act who last Friday won the two ‘Cat 1’ competitions, the Golden Sprint and Essex Vase. Those competitions are now over and it’s back to the normal open race fare at Romford tonight we all know and love. There are thirteen open races on show tonight from 6.27pm and with several greyhounds making there Romford debuts, will as ever make for some interesting viewing.

There are two minor competitions starting this week; the Romford Friday night maidens over 400 metres and the Romford Friday night maiden stayers over 575 metres. Of those six heats I have endeavoured to find out more about greyhounds from five of the six.


Those who follow the open racing at Romford and read this column will know all about Cloncunny Major. Trained by Kevin Boon he duly obliged last week at an SP return of 8/1 on his Romford debut. This week Cloncunny Pride from the same litter for Romford trainer Philip Simmonds will be trying to emulate her litter brother.

The daughter of Taylors Sky and Eyepad is making her debut on these shores in heat two of the Friday night maidens over 400 metres at 7.03pm. The April ’16 whelp has had four trials over C&D and is coming along nicely. Over in Ireland she does have race experience with wins at Clonmel over 274 and 480 metres. If taking to the track like her litter brother it will not be long before she sheds her maiden tag.

Trainer Philip Simmonds on Cloncunny Pride said: “We picked up on Cloncunny Major winning last week at Romford and hope Pride does the same. She has done one good trial and has shown a bit of improvement. We thought we would give the owners a night out at Romford on a Friday night.

“We are hoping for big things from her but she does need to improve. We thought we would give her a go and see how she gets on.

“At the moment we are not certain where she wants to be trap wise but presently she does seem to be running middle so trap four on Friday is good for her.”


In heat three of the Romford Friday night maidens at 7.18pm, Thunder Joe will be looking to put his last run at Romford behind him and take the spoils. Trained by Philip Simmonds the January ’16 whelp in his debut race at Romford in early March was knocked over at the first bend.

Tonight the son of Jaytee Hellcat and Code Ivory will be looking to put that fall behind him and take the heat. He appears to have shown no ill effects of that tumble when clocking a calculated trial time of 24.21 over C&D last week. That trial time was better than his two Romford trials before his race which shows he is improving all the time. Like kennel mate Cloncunny Pride he has winning form in Ireland at Clonmel over 480 metres.

Trainer Philip Simmonds on Thunder Joe said: “He was knocked over in his last race and we have given him a trial since to give him a confidence boost. He did a good trial of 24.21 and will be looking for a big run from him on Friday. He looks good and if he gets a run he might be a good thing. It was a soft fall and is 100% alright. The fall will not bother him.”


Yarmouth trainer Kevin Boon knows what it takes to win around Romford as he showed last week when landing a double with Cloncunny Pride and Murrys Act. This week he is giving Cookie Time her Romford and six bend debut at the same time. In the first heat of the Romford Friday night 500 maidens over 575 metres at 7.34pm, the April ’16 whelp will be looking to win over six bends at the first time of asking.

The British bred daughter of Farneys Cookie and Riverside Lucy has had six races all at open race level at Nottingham but has failed to record any victories. Those races were over 480 and 500 metres and it looks like six bends is where her future lies. If she is anything like her dad, who won the 3 steps to victory at Sheffield back in 2015 she could be a bit special.

Trainer Kevin Boon on Cookie Time said: “She is a little bit young to run over the distance but I have let my head rule me. She definitely stays. She runs on really well and at Nottingham she was first to the pick up every time. I’m not rushing her and will take my time with her. She has not been around Romford before but I’m not worried. It may take her two or three races to take to it.

“The longer run will be good for her as she was knocked about a bit in her last run at Nottingham. I will take her to Towcester at some point as there is no harm in trying her there.”


Courts Ad Gregory in the second heat of the maiden stayers at 7.51pm is making her Romford debut but not her six bend debut. Trained by Philip Simmonds the March ’16 whelp has been running at Central Park with George Andreas.

The daughter of Trade Freddie and Ardrahan Maid has had all her thirteen races at Central Park in graded races. Her sole win to date came over 642 metres in an S2 graded race. Clearly she needs longer trips and that is where her future lies. She has shown consistency in her two trials at Romford over 400 metres clocking calculated times of 24.54 and 24.58.

Trainer Philip Simmonds on Courts Ad Gregory said: “We have only had her in the kennels for three weeks but she has settled in really well. She is a really happy dog.W e have started her over 575 metres as we have to start somewhere but she does need further. She will get 575 metres easy and I can’t wait to get her over eight bends.
“She has done very good trials over 400 metres. You still have to do good times over any distance.
“I had run her from trap five and she ran really well but I do think she is a middle seed.”


Like Cookie Time in the first heat, Tyrian Jazz for Henlow trainer Sharon Thompson is also making her Romford and six bend debut at the same time. In heat three of the maiden stayers at 8.06pm, the March ’15 whelp has shown she does have staying qualities when winning an S3 graded race at home track Henlow over 550 metres. Early in her career she was at Sunderland on the graded strength before moving down south.

While at Sunderland the daughter of Superior Product and Fane Chroishna won four races over 450 metres in A4, A3 and A2 graded affairs. She has shown she does have early and if taking to Romford could spring a surprise.

Trainer Sharon Thompson on Tyrian Jazz said: “She does stay. She has run 550 metres at Henlow and gets around with ease. We will see how she goes. If she can ping the lids she will be hard to catch. She has not had a trial and if she qualifies that will be her trial. She started off at Sunderland and had a few problems. They are all sorted now. We will see on Friday how she goes and are looking forward to it.”


Regular readers of this column if following the runners covered may have had two winners last week courtesy of Cloncunny Major and Murrys Act. Both trained by Kevin Boon, Cloncunny Major set the standards when winning in a calculated time of 24.39 and then Murrys Act duly obliged at an SP return of 2/1 to add the Essex Vase to his Champion Stakes victory.

Keep reading folks.