The final of the €2,000 to the winner Sorley O’Dornan Memorial Guys & Dolls took centre stage at Clonmel Greyhound Stadium last night and there was a minor shock as Honey Bunny once again displayed her brilliant promise to emerge a fine winner.
Kindly sponsored by the Family and friends of the late Sorley O’Dornan, this stake has proved ultra-competitive from the outset and last night’s decider proved no different. It was Flaminhasntabob who went off the even money favourite, however, the fast-starting Flashy Farloe was to lead at trap rise. Showing the best of the early gears, Flashy Farloe held a slender advantage rounding the opener from Honey Bunny, who rallied on the rail to use Flaminhasntabob as a buffer to turn second. Meanwhile, Rinestone Cowboy had entered the equation on the outside and he was to progress into second down the back as Flashy Farloe continued to set a scorching gallop. However, there was only one eye-catcher at this point and that was the David and Michael Power-owned Honey Bunny as she was displaying massive back straight pace to storm into contention upon entrance to the penultimate turn. Tracking brilliantly at this point, the October daughter of Droopys Sydney and Traceys Pet was now in control and she upped the ante on her quest for success. Showing a fine turn of speed in the closing stages, Honey Bunny outlined her strong stamina as she pulled clear of Flashy Farloe to record a three and a half length victory. The time was a fast 28.81 .10s and many congratulations are extended to connections on a terrific result for the 3/1 chance.
Elsewhere on the card, there was a double for the kennel of Derek Kehoe as both Slaneyside Begly and Slaneyside Defoe crossed in front.
The first to score was Slaneyside Begly in race three, a sprint contest. Running from trap two, the 2/1 joint favourite made his intentions clear from the off as he sought out an eleventh career win. Quickly into stride, the son of Pat C Sabbath and Slaneyside Mandy soon took control and he kept on well in the closing yards to win by one and a half lengths from Kaarst Ratar in second. The time was 16.66.
The double was completed later in the card as the evergreen Slaneyside Defoe scored an incredible 26th career victory. Now well into his fourth year, the son of Good News and Slaneyside Cool is as game as they come and all his abilities were on display last night. Leading early from trap six, he was collared early on by Fabulous Dyna who showed fine pace to take over down the back. However, Slaneyside Defoe doesn’t know when he’s beaten and he came back for more in the closing yards to score by a neck. The time was a rapid 28.89 .10s.
Speel Binder was very impressive in landing an A3 525 in race nine for Graham Holland as he too recorded a double on the night.
A March son of Ballymac Bolger and Borna Bula, he made it back-to-back wins at Clonmel when justifying his 4/5 starting price. Not too fluently into stride from trap two, Spell Binder was forced to settle for third early on as Howareyounow led early doors. However, Spell Binder made steady progress down the back and he took control at the penultimate turn before powering clear. A comprehensive five length winner in the end, the time was 28.60 .10s.
Graham Holland sealed a double in the final race on the card, which was A1/A2 550 as recent Rural Kennels Unraced winner, Rural Kihei, got back to winning ways. Looking very well handicapped on paper, she didn’t come away at all well from trap two but got herself into contention early on to turn fourth. Five lengths adrift down the back, the daughter of Newinn Taylor and Rural Maui went through runners like a knife through butter to take charge between the bottom two bends and from there, the result was never in doubt. Crossing the line one and a half lengths clear of Foxmount Lough in second, the time for the 4/6 favourite was 30.00 .10s for the 550-yard trip.