On a night when all eyes were on Shawfield, a young dog who made his debut receiving 10 metres in a graded race at the same track was taking the €80,000 Con & Annie Kirby Memorial at Limerick.
The Robert Gleeson trained Toolmaker Josie went to trap four of the Limerick 525 yard final with an empty box on his outside (Ballymac Syd – lame) and was quote as a 6-1 chance. This is how the race unfolded. .
The winner’s time was 29.37 and the winning distance was a length.
Toolmaker Josie is owned by a man familiar to Greyhound Star readers over many years, with gallons on ink spent in tales of his successes on the Scottish independent tracks, Willie Hyslop better known as ‘the Toolmaker man’.
Willie took out a trainers license to run a few at Shawfield but sends most of his better dogs to Robert Gleeson in Ireland. So how did he come by Josie?
He said: “The dog was originally with John Flynn, the former Kilkenny racing manager. I was looking to buy another dog and the guy who I was buying from told me about Josie who was still not registered for racing.
“We arranged a private trial at Shelbourne on a Monday morning against one we expected him to beat. He didn’t trap that well but did something like a 28.80. I brought him over and he was marked up at Shawfield where he set off a ten metre start and they didn’t get to within five lengths of him.
“He was only young but I thought he might have a bit of potential. I didn’t want him to carry on in handicap races and so sent him back to Ireland. I thought it was a very good run on the night. The red was a quality dog and our lad took a bump at the first bend and still did a time in a very good competition.
“I don’t know what we will do with him now. There is some sickness in the kennel. Josie and my other dog who also ran last night (Toolmaker Daddy) are the only ones who haven’t had it. That can drag on for a month.
“I think the English Derby has come too soon for him, but there are plenty of decent puppy competitions in Ireland that we can go for.”
Photos courtesy Irish Greyhound Board