Peter Farrell

The remaining twelve opening round heats of the TIME Greyhound Nutrition Confined Derby served as the feature action on last night’s Limerick card and it produced more ultra-competitive action as the field was halved to seventy-two runners ahead of next week’s second round.

On track, there were a number of serious performances from the likes of Drombeg Pearl, Cluas Exile and Hand Shake to name but a few, however, given the confined nature of the event, the standard was set by Sir Rodger as he sealed a fifth career victory for owner Michael Keating.


Sir Rodger was returning to Limerick after a successful time at Galway in heat sixteen and he readjusted to his surroundings in terrific fashion as he ran to a trap-to-line victory. 3/1 at the off, the brindle was quickest into stride from six and he outpaced his rivals early on to swoop around ahead of Cashen Hoffa in second. Little to separate the pair thereafter, the son of Pestana and Rinnwood Pearl was always holding ‘Hoffa’ as he stayed on stoutly to cross the line with one length to spare. The time was 28.91.


Heat 13 - On The Radio has proved a magnificent servant for Gerry O’Donohue and he got the ball rolling in terrific fashion in the opening heat on Saturday. Rocketing from traps to record a slick 1.22 sectional, the son of Candlelight King and Pinnacle Blue held a two length advantage over She Did It down the back and kept just enough in reserve in the closing stages to see off his rival by one length. The time was 29.01.

Heat 14 - Owned by the Horan-Family-Syndicate, Glamorous Woohoo (5/2) was chasing a third win from his last four starts when arriving at Limerick and he duly obliged as he came from off-the-pace to score. Led early by Innfield Place in one, the latter opened a four length lead down the back and looked a likely winner of the contest. However, ‘Woohoo’ rallied in the closing stages and the son of Dorotas Woo Hoo and Rage Emoski took charge around the final turn before drawing clear to win with real intent. Three lengths better off than his rival, the time was 28.98.

Heat 17 - Bosra Bono was forced to play second fiddle on his last start, however, put things right in heat seventeen as he made every post a winner. Owned by Maurice Mullaney, the son of Broadstrand Bono and Ballymac Velvet stepped away lively from trap three and he manufactured a three length advantage heading into the back straight. Challenged in the latter stages by the favourite, Goingthewrongway, ‘Bono’ was as game as a pheasant in seeing off his rival by one length, in 28.93.

Heat 23 - Aiden Bennett enjoyed a fine success at Galway last time out with Drumgeely Jim (Broadstrand Bono - Court Queen) and he made it back-to-back wins for connections with a determined display in heat twenty-three. Running from four, the 5/2 chance broke best of all but was outpaced on the run to the opener by Siochain in six. Switching to a wide course down the back, this ultimately proved decisive for ‘Jim’ as he swept around his rival entering the home turn before staying on expertly to win by two lengths. A thoroughly professional performance, the time was 28.93.


There were a number of heat winners that bowed out of the ‘Confined’ Derby due to breaking the stipulated time, however, they produced performances worthy of a big mention for their respective connections.

Heat 15 - There was a career best effort in heat fifteen as the Tom Mackey-owned Moanveen Nadia (3/1) produced a masterclass of front-running to score for the third time in her career. Running from two, the daughter of Ballymac Bolger and Bonitas Bullet pinged the lids to lead early and in doing so, continued to draw clear of her rivals to win by a convincing nine lengths. The time was 28.79.

Heat 18 - Cream Cracker was a generous 4/1 chance in the market, however, Denis O’Neill’s bitch broke her maiden tag in terrific style as she came out the right side of a fine buckle with Group Goldstar. Headed by her rival in the early exchanges, the daughter of Ballymac Anton and Mucky Harbour used her rails berth in one to her advantage as she took a slender lead midway down the back and this was enough to ultimately gain success. Staying on well, Cream Cracker saw off the challenge of Group Goldstar to win by one length, in 28.83.

Heat 19 - Mary Clarke was represented by Hand Shake (Droopys Sydney - Sweet Shalimar) in heat nineteen and the 2/1 chance bounced back emphatically from a recent rough passage around Thurles. This fellow looked a real prospect when posting 29.10 on debut at Kilkenny and he delivered in style last night as he quickly reeled in Gurtnacrehy Jojo before drawing clear of rivals to win at his leisure. Crossing the line five and a half lengths clear of Priceless Hero in second, the time was 28.71.

Heat 20 - The 28.90 barrier was broken again in heat twenty as Hidden Burgess made it back-to-back wins for Kathleen Browne and Eamonn Quinn. Sent off the 2/1 second favourite, the son of Burgess Bucks and Princess Mel bolted from three to lead early on and this proved decisive in seeing off the persistent challenge of Skidroes Pestana in second. A thriller throughout, ‘Burgess’ just held off his rival to win by one length, in 28.74.

Heat 21 - Nobodys Home was the next tracker to produce a career-best display as the strapping white and fawn powered to victory in heat twenty-one. Running from three, the 6/4 favourite, owned by the Wont-Go-Home-Syndicate, made a slick exit from three to dictate proceedings and she maintained a relentless gallop throughout to come home two lengths clear of the staying-on Abigails Sinead in second. The time was 28.78.

Heat 22 - The performance of the night came in heat twenty-two as Drombeg Pearl scored for the third time for Evan McAuliffe. A recently turned two-year-old, the daughter of Grangeview Ten and Blastoff Kat was spring-like at traps and the blue jacketed runner held a three length lead rounding the opener. That lead soon doubled within a matter of strides as the 5/2 chance made light work of her rivals to cross the line with nine lengths to spare over the even money favourite, Gaytime Elmo, in second. The time was a blistering 28.56.

Heat 24 - In the concluding heat of the first round, Cluas Exile rediscovered his Youghal form to win for the second time in his career for Pat Buckley and R.A Colwell. A supremely bred son of Malachi and Glowing Exile, the June whelp broke well from four and despite shipping a hefty bump at the opener, showed huge determination to wrestle back control. In doing so, he soon opened an unassailable lead over his rivals and crossed the line with four lengths to spare over Syds Button in second. The time was 28.68.