Peter Farrell

A winner on the opening night in 30.09, Whats Up Jack set the standard in last week’s second round as he posted a brisk 29.81 to move to the head of the market in terms of an outright leader. However, he won’t have it all his own way in the decider as the award for quickest in last night’s semi finals went to Ganja Gun as he moved brilliantly to win with ease.

Running in the opening semi final, Ganja Gun went to boxes as a 2/1 shot with Hazelhill Hazard installed the even money favourite to land the spoils after an eye-catching performance in behind Whats Up Jack last time out. However, this proved to be all one-way traffic as John Meelam and Patrick Conlon’s runner made light work of the opposition in the end. Only moderately into stride from trap three, Ganja Gun was forced to settle for third early on as Adamant Approach led early with Vigorous Orla also pacing up well on the rails. Ganja Gun tucked in nicely at this point however, and after running a fine second bend, he outpaced his rivals down the back to take control at the penultimate bend mark. From here, it was a case of how far for the son of Sh Avatar and Killinan Reina as he powered clear of his rivals to claim an eight length success. A very telling display from Ganja Gun, the time was a rapid 29.83 as Priceless King and Hazelhill Hazard took the remaining qualifying positions in second and third.


Whats Up Jack was bidding to extend his unbeaten run to three win’s in the stake in the second semi final and he too made light work of his rivals with another polished performance.

Owned by the O-L Syndicate, Whats Up Jack has really hit form in the past few weeks and as such, he was installed the 4/5 favourite to land his contest. Quickest into stride from trap four, Whats Up Jack checked slightly off the second bend and he briefly surrendered the lead to Second Captain as the greyhounds entered the back straight. However, this was very short-lived as Whats Up Jack soon strangled back control and he put daylight between himself and Second Captain midway down the back straight. Setting a strong gallop thereafter, Whats Up Jack was never under any threat of being pegged back as the son of Candlelight King and Balance Sheet stormed his way up the Limerick straight to record a five and a half length victory over Second Captain in second. The time was 29.91 as Darrig Mia claimed her spot in next week’s decider, a further length back in third.


Elsewhere on the card, the supporting act was the two semi finals of the Limerick A4 550 and it was Home Noah who set the standard as he got the nod by the narrowest of margins.

Trained by Paul Hennessy for his Wife Susan, Home Noah (Jaytee Jet - Home Julie) was led early on by the 4/5 favourite Celerino; however, the latter seemed to check slightly off the second turn which allowed Home Noah to take up the mantle. Little to separate the duo down the back, Celerino showed fine determination to wrestle back the lead and it proved a nip and tuck contest thereafter. Celerino continued to hold a narrow lead on the run for home but Home Noah proved a persistent threat in the closing stages and he got the nod by a short-head crossing the line. The time was 30.40 with Dunquin Ida claiming third.


Prior to that, there was a big shock in the opening semi final as Ferryforth Danny was turned over at the paws of Knockalton Cash.

Owned and trained by John Byrne, Knockalton Cash went to traps a 3/1 chance but after showing fizzing early dash from trap one, he soon opened a four length lead rounding the opening two turns. Ferryforth Danny, meanwhile, met traffic leaving boxes but he tracked brilliantly in behind to slide up the inside of runners and sit second into the back straight. However, Knockalton Cash had opened a wide margin and although Ferryforth Danny made rapid inroads in the second half of the contest, a switch in course up the home straight allowed Knockalton Cash to land the spoils. Just half a length in it crossing the line, the time for the son of Skywalker Farloe and Cabra Zara was 30.52 as the remaining qualification spot as claimed by Da Joe Show, a further six lengths back in third.  


In the opening race of the night, Ballymartin Rory justified his even money price tag with a fine success for joint owners Sean Roche and Amanda Meade. A recent purchase at Thurles sales, Ballymartin Rory was having his first start and after taking control at the midway point, the son of Premier Fantasy and Martinstown Diva never looked back. Setting a strong gallop from halfway, Ballymartin Rory powered his way across the line to seal a four length victory over Randy Lady in second. The time was 28.91.

In race three, there was comprehensive victory for the 4/6 favourite Lisogarbh Diego as he powered to a six and a half length victory. Jointly owned by Rory and Aoife McLoughney, Lisogarbh Diego meant business from the off as he flashed from trap five to lead early doors. Drawing clear of his rivals thereafter, the son of Droopys Sydney and Liosgrabh Ene sealed a comfortable victory as he stopped the clock in a smart 28.61.

One other greyhound dipped under 29-second barrier on the night and this came in race four as Drombeg Jake (Laughil Blake - Super Jenny)upset the odds to land the spoils at 4/1. Owned by Evan McAuliffe, the Galway raider didn’t come away at all well but he displayed brilliant acceleration on the outside to course around runners and take control entering the back straight. Opening a three length lead at this point, Glideaway Ella did make a good fist of it on the run for home; however Drombeg Jake kept enough in reserve to cross the line with three parts of a length in hand. The time was 28.85.