Bitches have a very poor record in the Greyhound Derby. No female has ever made the final at Towcester, though Coolavanny Chick and Ballymac Tas both made Nottingham deciders. Crafty Shivoo is just two runs away from being the first after clocking 28.59 and 28.62 in her last two races.


The fact that Cooladerry Dust won his Coronation Cup semi by 10 lengths in the fastest time of the year, should have made him a shoo-in for the Romford selection this week. He is, but only by his white and brindle eyebrows. The head scratcher was Gemma Evans’ September pup Millbank Boiler whose 23.66 was only three spots short of the quickest 400 of the year.


Droopys Standard was 12/1 when he set the fastest semi final of the Kent Silver Salver at Central Park on Sunday. Decent odds for a dog who had won two of his previous three efforts over course and distance including setting a track record of 16.25.


Staying with the sprinters, in early May, Mustang Ojay beat a decent class field in an Oxford two-bender clocking the sixth fastest time of the year, 14.95. In his next run, he went second fastest with a 14.90 run, and repeated that time again on Saturday. Only Casemiro has gone quicker this year in 14.89. (That’s Casemiro the greyhound, not the Manchester United midfielder. He’s slower than a teenager on a Monday morning).


All of which can only lead onto ‘Different Speed – same result’. On Sunday, the Perry Barr raider extended his winning sequence to 13. Of those, 12 were at Valley. The quickest of the dozen was a 15.89; Sunday’s win came in 15.92. His last nine SPs: 4/7f, 4/11f, 4/9f, 11/10f, 4/9f, 1/7f, 2/9f, 3/10f, 1/6f. This time last year he was in P3 at Monmore.


Last week we mentioned that Garfiney Blaze’s 41.14 was the quickest Monmore 684m run since Bombardier’s 41.03 back in 2021. On Saturday, he was back and chipped that PB down to 41.02. The last hound to better that was yet another Imperial kennels runner, Antigua Fire with a 40.90 run back in 2019. (His PB was 40.76).


On a similar theme, Innfield Charm returned to Sheffield having followed home Savana Heross in the fastest 720 of the year, last week. But Tom Heilbron’s bitch now holds that record having chipped away another 34 spots. In fact, her 42.93 is identical to the 2023 FOY recorded by Sweet Daffodil.


Yarmouth have a decent quality of A1 runners – as witnessed by the number of locals who achieve plenty on their open race raiding elsewhere. So Acejukepopper’s 27.78 is particularly worthy of mention since he is only 19 months old. He is trained by John Mullins, was bred by Heather Dimmock and is from the first litter by Greyhound of the Year, Signet Ace.


Suffolk Downs joint track record holder for the 388m trip, Bettys Jack, was back to two bends at Nottingham on Monday but took it all in his stride with a 17.58 run for Nottingham’s 305m. The Boon runner was just half a length behind Coppice Rocket’s FOY.


There were a number of decent open race performances at Hove on Thursday including a 16.34 (-10) in the sprint for Bombout Bullet and the fastest 500 of the meeting for Wasted Monday (29.35 -10). But the selection is Maxine Locke’s slightly slower, but very much less experienced pup, Droopys Rosie (29.42 -10). At a time of 32-34 kilo strapping wenches (mainly daughters of Droopys Sydney), Portlaw born Rosie tips the scales at a mere 25.9 kilos.


And another little ‘un. . . . Sunderland was running particularly quick on Wednesday with A2 and A3 races being won in 27.15 and 27.14 respectively. It wasn’t quite so rapid on Sunday when 25.9kg Firmino Bubble overcame some heavy bumping to win an A1 in 27.28. That’s seven wins in her last ten.


Neighbouring Newcastle was running particularly slick on Thursday with all, bar one, of the level break 480 metre races breaking 29.00. The swiftest was A2 pup Jacktavern Vegas (28.45). But in the view of the fact that it was the fastest time of the year – albeit from a small sample – the selection has to be Jimmy Fenwick’s defending POW Ballymac Lineout for a 38.84 win over 640m. That is four wins in his last five.


Ex-Hove D1 sprinter Thorndyke Ace seems to be enjoying himself in the North East. He went to the Pelaw 435m traps for the 12th time on Sunday and rattled up win number six in the fastest time of the week, 25.98


Connections of Move Over Ogie might consider themselves unlucky that their hand isn’t the Crayford selection. An 11 length win in 45.22 for the Golden Jacket trip would do the job most weeks. But that would mean ignoring the 33.26 clocked by Miss Syd which equalled Ritzy Empress’s fastest 540 of the year.


Irrespective of any times or going allowances, Kinsley’s top race of the week was a Friday A2 featuring a string of previous Performers of the Week including Ballymac Frisby, Lynnway Touch and defending champ, Mossrow Jemma. Kilara Thyestes had never won in A2 in seven previous, often leading but getting picked up on the run-in. He just got home this week, by an ever shortening black neck.


There would be a strong case for making Como Star the Harlow selection, based on his winning an A2 in 26.40 (+10). But we are going for Pookies Caesar with a 26.39 run in A4. Why? Well it seems a pretty fair effort for a pensioner only weeks short of his fifth birthday.


The Suffolk Downs selection was a face-off between Dunns River who saw off an A1 field in 23.83 (+10) and Bronson who won an A2 in 23.82 (N). In such a tight call, we would often favour the higher grade winner. But the near 38 kilo Bronson was completing a hat-trick and his previous two wins were both registered in A1.


Rioja Joey is back and looking almost as good as ever with a 28.13 run at Perry Barr on Saturday. ‘Big Kev’ Hutton will be delighted to see the brindle so close to his 28.03PB. Unfortunately though, it wasn’t the Performance of the Week. That has to go to 21 month old Flying Desire who beat Jet Stream Angel on the same card in 28.18.


Last week’s Doncaster selection Agile Annie was back in action and won again on Saturday. But her winning time (29.79) was only the fourth quickest of the meeting. Heading that list with Phil Milner’s Avongate Venus who made it two from two since arriving from Ireland with a 29.43 open race win.


We anticipated that the clash between two stayers, Ballymac Mags, and the young upstart Ballymac Madgie, would dominate this week’s Swindon selections. Honours went to Sean Gresham’s Madgie though the time (42.00)was nothing special, based on her best form. Instead, we have to plump for Eze. Not only did he produce the joint second quickest 28.00 run for the standard this year, it was the same day that he was named in Gareth Southgate’s European Champion squad!