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    Top performances of the week
Top performances of the week

Top performances of the week

It proved to be an exceptional week for the KSS Syndicate, highlighted by Queen Dusty's triumph in the Bet365 Puppy Oaks Final. However, the standout performance at Towcester belongs to Queen Georgia, clocking an impressive 28.98, nearly 10 lengths faster.

On the preceding night, King Memphis (Olympic) and Droopys Clue (Curtis/Ballyregan Mem.) may have posted slower times than the previous week, but they were still the fastest winners in their respective competition semifinals. King Memphis boasts 10 wins from 17 races, while Clue has an impressive record of 16 victories out of 25.

In the English Puppy Derby Final, King Capaldi, though slightly overshadowed by big brother King Memphis, displayed excellence with a fabulous run of 28.67 in the BGBF British Bred Derby semi. Adding to his impressive resume, King Capaldi has notable achievements, including a 27.87-476m run in Swindon, a 26.76 460m performance in Oxford, and a 28.88 500m run at Towcester.

The KSS Syndicate continued their success at Oxford, with Havana Lover and track record holder Havana Top Note securing spots in the final of the Bet365 Challenge Cup. Havana Lover, in her sixth Cat One final (491-710m), boasts two wins to date. Additionally, the performance of the recently featured puppy Brentfordpenguin with a 26.86 run is worth noting.

Despite a temptation to think that Newcastle ran slower than the official going allowance, Swift Silly's 28.72 (-30) in the All England Cup first round was comparable to Swift Josh (28.93 -20) and Wraysbury Katie (28.97 -30) in the puppy open and an A2 time, respectively. The early-paced Hale hound delivered an impressive run, expressing a preference for fast summer going.

Going conditions also played a significant role at Sunderland, where temperatures ranged from -30 to -40. The fastest time of 27.74 (-30) from Canya Wildcat stood out, earning the pup her first win after five losses.

The Crayford selection, Laughil Jess, might spark debate as she wasn't the fastest on the clock. Her 34.28 win was the fourth-fastest 540 on the day, acknowledging the faster time of 33.74 from Dazl Hermes. However, Laughil Jess was chosen not just for her eight-timer completion or unbeaten record in 19 races over course and distance, but as a selection based on an exemplary display of a greyhound refusing to be beaten.

The delayed first round of the ARC National Sprint witnessed five of the six favourites being turned over at Nottingham on Monday. The exception was the aptly named Bombout Bullet (4-5f), who delivered the stand-out run of the night, clocking 17.57, just half a length outside the FOY.

Nottingham’s Barry Denby boasts an almost 30% strike rate for his open racers, and his dogs appear to thrive at Doncaster. Another treble this week, led by the remarkable Leahs Dream. Her time of 29.31 on Saturday was only five spots off Agile Annie’s FOY for the 483m distance.

Unfortunately, the Denby coffers could not be further swelled at Perry Barr this week as there was no open racing. Thus, taking Bellmore Cricket’s POW place was John Lambe’s On The Tail. It took eight attempts for him to secure his first A2 win, though following a recent A3-A2-A2 hat-trick, the grader is unlikely to be as benevolent next time out.

Harlow’s defending POW, Front Alice, continued her success with her fifth win in seven races for trainer Kevin Proctor. Her Wednesday evening open race victory was her quickest to date, 26.38 (-10).

There can’t be many 19-month-old pups who have ever produced a seven-timer. Yahoo Megan has. The Patrick Janssens-trained brindle pup delivered her fastest Suffolk Down 388m run to date, clocking 23.65 (-10). The track record stands at 23.32 (N).

Ballyard Shawny secured his fourth consecutive race victory at Henlow on Sunday night, winning a 460m open in 27.25 (-10) for Jason Bloomfield. (The fastest time of the year is Bombay Joker’s 27.19, on normal going, in the heats of the Maiden Derby). A mention is also due for Ron Peckover’s Salthill Sniper, who avenged his most recent defeat by Kilara Elk while equaling his own FOY for the 277m trip. That’s 9:13 over course and distance.

This week’s Romford selection is a head-to-head between two of Maxine Locke’s kennel (a headlock?). Storys Hybrid appeared to have sealed it with his first win since taking the Henlow Maiden Derby Final, a 23.85 run in Friday’s opener. Only to see that run usurped by Whitewood Lenny with a 23.81 – both on .10 slow.

The opens were back at Swindon on Thursday where Angie Kibble’s Ballymac Zeela led home three Hutton raiders in 28.28. A mention is also due for Sean Gresham’s 17-month-old Ballymac Madgie, landing a maiden in 28.56.

It would not be very common for a new track record to fail to secure the POW. However, we are bypassing the new 645m clock at Valley. The distance is still very new and with a winning margin of a head. . . we'll see. Besides, how could we overlook his kennel mate Glenmalure Flyer, who has been unbeaten since the place opened its doors? His 28.84 win was his sixth open victory in a row, with an aggregate winning distance of 41 lengths.

Bob Pattinson’s Fine Prosecco missed out when beaten three lengths by last week’s Central Park POW, Lostrigg Paddy. This week’s A1 was a much easier proposition, and the white and blue brindle needed no second opportunity to clock the fastest time of the week.

There wasn’t much in terms of relative quality between the open race winners over four different distances at Monmore on Saturday. Who would you choose: 15.52 (264m), 28.51 (480m), 37.95 (630m), and 42.00 (684m)? We’ve gone for Longacre Nutty’s win over the ‘short six bends’. This year she has won opens on four different tracks between 500-714m.

Pelaw’s defending champ Annadown Cuddles went to traps at 8-13f for Sunday’s top heat. But a slow break was her undoing, and the honours went to Milagro, who appears in this feature for the third time this year.

When Ay Up Frederick went to traps for Sunday’s A2, the British-bred black had five defeats in her (no gender mislabelling here) last eight races. Three were at the paws of Dairyhills Best, two were down to Droopys Alyssa. The field also included the defending POW Outback Abigail. All three were in the field, but none could live with the winner’s 27.59 six-length victory.

When Alberts Legacy went to traps for Wednesday’s A1, the Yarmouth bookies seemed keen to make a point by making him a 1-6f. To be fair, he had won his last five A1 races and had two ’27.56’ winning lines of form. But the grader had the last laugh when the ‘only needs to turn up’ favourite was beaten a length and a quarter by Ballinabola Elsa in 28.02 (-30). Which worked out just one spot slower than Albert’s last winning time.

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