Ian Fortune

Just two years after the sensational Susie Sapphire raced to victory in the Suncroft Festival Puppy Oaks, Lets Go Bubbles followed in her famous half-sister’s footsteps on Saturday night as she was crowned queen of Shelbourne Park for the night.

Of course, the opening round of the RPGTV Open 600 also provided some wonderful action, including a fastest of the round 32.35 from Ballinabola Ed but the headlines had to go to Lets Go Bubbles.


Easy Razzle was favourite after a foot-perfect passage through the prelims but it didn’t happen for her on this occasion.

Seconds before the hare got to the traps, many of the field were seen charging the lids.

As a result, Easy Razzle missed the start. Instead, Boylesports Coco and Lets Go Bubbles were fastest into stride from the middle of the track. The former quickly moved to the front on her own but Lets Go Bubbles was always too close. 

Representing Owen McKenna and Peter Conerford, who had such a ride with the aforementioned Susie Sapphire, Lets Go Bubbles began to close on Boylesports Coco as they turned for home. It was inevitable that she would pick up her rival for the second week running.

The daughter of Droopys Sydney and Jetstream Lynx powered home to race past Boylesports Coco for a two and a half length victory in a quick 28.47. Goldcash Ice was another two lengths further back in third. Lets Go Bubbles will now almost certainly be aimed at the Sporting Press Irish Oaks. That’s what her half-sister did after all. 

Jennifer Fitzpatrick presents the trophy to Jeanie Comerford after Lets Go Bubbles won the Final of the Suncroft Festival Puppy Oaks at Shelbourne Park. Also included are sponsors Tony and Loraine Howard, Peter, Siobhan, Laura and Gerard Comerford, Andrew Slyman, Mick Lowrey, trainer Owen McKenna, Emma and Oisin Howard and  Aineta Kozaowska.                          Pic: Imelda Grauer


The opening round of the RPGTV Open 600 had a bit of everything.

Two of the heats were won by 6-1 chances while the two remaining contests saw odds-on favourites oblige. Of course, it was no surprise to see Ballinabola Ed set the standard in the final heat.


Backers of Allforthebest were certainly in clover in the opening heat as the immensely fast tracker took charge into the opening turn.

Those familiar with the near veteran would know that there are very few that would back run him and so it panned out.

Representing the John Codd led HDJ Syndicate, the brindle powerhouse raced clear throughout to see off the staying on Mcneill by six lengths in 32.48. There was a further three length gap to Global Glengar in third.   


The Tom O’Neill trained Ballyhooly Hi never looked likely to come out on top in the second heat but an incredible finishing flourish saw him reel in both Disco Pants and Storys Cashout in a desperately tight finish.

Storys Cashout was fastest into stride and led for much of the run to the turn but Disco Pants slipped up his inner to move clear. Storys Cashout was clipped form behind soon after but recovered well to threaten into the third turn. While all this was happening, Ballyhooly Hi found himself on the fence off the second turn, challenging for third spot.

He was still lengths behind the front two at the third turn but devoured the ground in the closing fifty yards. The three flashed past the post together with the decision going to Ballyhooly Hi on the outside of the track.

The son of Ballymac Best and Cats Belle had done the best impression of his half-brother Beach Avenue by coming out of the clouds to win by a half length from Disco Pants in 32.93. Storys Cashout was just a head further back in third.  


The inexperienced Glengar Bridie may have been stepping up in trip for the first time in Heat 3 but it certainly didn’t stop her from seeing off some very talented rivals with a brave display of front running.

The daughter of Droopys Sydney and Nice Mystery broke fastest from trap four and cut for the fence, clearing those on her inner and containing Burj Khalifa on her outside. With the latter hampered on the corner by Tailteann Syd, it was up to Tookmaker Wilde and Millridge Bryce to offer the most pressure to the leader.

Indeed, Easter Cup runner-up Toolmaker Wilde is very strong and looked the likely winner downm the back straight but he could never get to Glengar Bridie. The Pat Buckley trained youngster just kept on finding to hold her rivals. Owned by Richard Colwell, Glengar Bridie hit the line with a half a length in hand on Toolmaker Wilde in 32.84.


After the exploits of Glengar Bridie fifteen minutes earlier, Ballinabola Ed (Confident Rankin/ Dolls Lady) completed a quick double for Pat Buckley in the final heat.

Hot favourite with the layers to win the RPGTV Open 600, he duly obliged at long odds-on but was made work much harder than many expected by Callaway Masters.

Brendan Murphy’s Ballinabola Ed didn’t exactly fly from traps but displayed the best early speed to lead before the turn. Callaway Masters was a clear second and actually closed the gap somewhat to the third turn to sit on the heels of the favourite.

In fact, for a few strides, the shock seemed on the cards but Ballinabola Ed had other ideas. Once turning for home, the Pat Buckley trained star kicked on again to eventually run out a comfortable three length scorer in a fastest of the round 32.35. Barefoot Supremo ran on strongly to finish just a length further back in third. 


Easter Cup third Trinity Junior sent out a reminder that he is a greyhound to follow in 2023 with a pretty emphatic success in the penultimate race for Tim Slevin and Peter Cronin.

The talented son of Laughil Blake and Oi Oi Upenalty didn’t explode from boxes but flew into the turn to quickly assert.

Once gong to the front, the 4-5 favourite was never going to be stopped. Jirano Jetstream gave chase but he and Toolmaker Stan clashed on the run in, allowing Droopys Onestop to come through for second. Trinity Junior was too good, however, going on to win by six lengths in a brilliant, best of the night, 28.18. 


The fifth race on the card was an A1 Bitch 525 and Highview Magnet and Crafty Shivoo offered up the most epic tussle from start to finish.

The pair were scarcely separated by more than a half-length at any point in the contest as they raced clear of the chasers.

Off the final turn, it seemed as though Crafty Shivoo may have been fractionally in front but the Gerry Merriman trained Highview Magnet is very strong and she began to get the better of the argument in the closing yards. At the line Dolores Merriman’s daughter of Pat C Sabbath and Highview Jayne had three parts of a length in hand in 28.52. 


There was a terrific end to the night’s action with three greyhounds crossing the line within a half length of each other in the finale.

Stefans Socks shoved his way past the fast-starting Runninta Shay to lead the field into the back straight but he had to really dig deep to hold the advancing Run Faster and Hukum on the run in.  

After his opening bend maneouvre, Stefans Socks deserved to hold on and he duly did. Shea Campbell’s son of Premier Fantasy and Geelo Lu Lu held off Run Faster by the shortest of short heads in 28.90. Hukum was just a half length back in third.


There is so much to like about Crafty Orlando. Last weekend, the son of Skywalker Canny and Dower Bud displayed incredible early dash to dominate but a week on he had to work harder for victory in the ninth race.

Foggy Bottom went up fast to race side by side with Crafty Orlando before moving on as they hit the second bend. Shane Divilly’s Crafty Orlando turned second, however, and never gave up the pursuit. Reeling in Foggy Bottom off the final turn, he finished with a flourish to ease on for a two length success in 28.55.


Ballinacarriga may have done most of his racing around Curraheen Park but of his five career wins, two of them came at Shelbourne Park.

In what was just his third Dublin outing, the son of Laughil Blake and Saunders Akita captured his second success around HQ in the second race.

Trained by Kieran Lynch for the Anna-Mac Syndicate, the May ’20 whelp shot from trap five to make all. Good Maestro did overcome early traffic and displayed big pace to grab second in defeat but Ballinacarriga went on to see off his rival by two lengths in a quick 28.63.


Racing opened with Boothebest coming home in front for Thomas Buggy and the Eagle Ballon Hill Syndicate.

Never far off the pace he made his move around the last two bends to lead the field into the home straight. The son of Laughil Blake and Emers Velvet went on to score by three lengths from Storys Fuse in 29.16.