The cream of the Yarmouth graded strength will be on display for betting shop punters following a decision to switch the Yamouth Championship first round heats to this coming Monday from Saturday.

The graded sweepstake carries a first prize of £1,200 and a ton of bragging rights and they were queueing up for a place in the first round.

Racing manager Marcus Westgate said: “We had 46 entries, and could have stretched it to 48, but I decided to consolidate it to 36 and keep it more competitive. Any dog in it should be capable of breaking 28 seconds.”

Controversially, the grader opted to exclude local Derby winner Do It For Twiggy and Ray Pleasants’ All About Class for being “too good”, a decision he stands by.

He said: “I think they are easily the best dogs at the track and I didn’t want to undermine the event by putting on exhibition races for them. Twiggy might be getting on but I think he is still capable of a 27.50 run and won in 27.87 the other night. The connections of both dogs are disappointed but I promised that we will stage a specially enhanced graded race with extra prize money for final night (Wednesday 22nd). I would also like to include a couple of John Mullins’ open racers such as Clubber Lang who is also too good to grade.

“Besides, I think Ray has another in the kennel who he could win it with in Mass Megan. But there are some other good young dogs coming through such as Cree Royal and Upourside, so we may end up with a 27.50 calibre winner anyway.”

The 36 runners will draw for traps on Thursday, the heats go ahead on Monday, with the semis the following Saturday.

Westgate said: “It is a bit of a risk running the first heat on BAGS because we could end up with a couple of odds-on chances. But BAGS tells us that they like to see variety too and these races should be very poplar with punters.”