Peter Farrell

Kindly sponsored by the Maher Family, the Willie Maher Memorial 525 has proved ultra-competitive thus far and tonight will see the semi finals of the €1,850 to winner stake go down for decision at Thurles Park.

Black Shine set the standard in the second round with a fine 29.09 .20s clock and that was indeed a career best effort from the July 22’ puppy. The son of Black Parachute came from off-the-pace on that occasion and he showed blistering back straight pace on that occasion. Drawn in five this time around, Black Shine can ill-afford another shabby start, however, he should certainly make the frame if receiving a clear passage.

Also involved in this line-up one of only two unbeaten runners in this stake, Long Spartacus. Owned by Brian Doyle and trained by Michael Donnelly, this strapping black has been flawless thus far, winning both his rounds in trap-to-line fashion, while posting 29.17 and 29.14 respectively.

A son of Dorotas Wildcat, he is clearing in the midst of a purple patch at present and is drawn perfectly in three in his attempts to seal the hat-trick. Others of interest in the opening semi are Miss Mini Belle, who is a likely leader for Thomas O’Donovan in trap one, while Borna Thyme raced prominently with Long Spartacus last time out and must be respected for Ruairi Dwan in the blue jacket.