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PINPOINT RECRUITMENT THREE STEPS TO VICTORY - SHEFFIELD (£10,000)

OF the myriad of events advertised every year in the GBGB Calendar the Pinpoint Recruitment 3 Steps To Victory at Sheffield more than any other demands versatility.

It takes a special type of greyhound to finish on top after three rounds over three distances and from three different starting points around the Owlerton track. And winner Patchys Kerry certainly is something special.

By defeating Viking Jack in Tuesday’s £10,000 final, the Mark Wallis-trained Patchys Kerry was winning her second Category One final in a year that is only a smidgen over three months old and her third in the last seven months.

Her catalogue of Category One conquests now reads: the Champion Stakes at Romford, the Golden Jacket at Crayford and the 3 Steps To Victory. Next on the agenda is likely to be another Category One, the Coral Regency, starting at Hove on April 21.

The conditions of the Pinpoint Recruitment 3 Steps To Victory dictate that the first round is over 480 metres, the semi-final over 500 metres and a substantial step up to 660 metres for the decider.

It is a race that plays to the strengths of a front-running stayer such as Patchys Kerry and she was the 2-5 favourite for the final on the back of a sizzling six-length victory over Clonkeen Snowy in 28.49sec – easily the fastest time at the penultimate stage.

There was the potential for early trouble, however, given the very close proximity of the 660-metre starting traps to the first bend. The danger to Patchys Kerry (trap four) was compounded by the trap draw which had put railer Catrigg Croft in trap five. Viking Jack, a semi-finalist in the event last year, was in trap six as the only wide seed in the line-up.

But concerns about the draw for Patchys Kerry were allayed when she broke well and moved into second, marginally behind Satin Mark (trap one), around the first and second turns.

Thirteen Bags (trap two), who probably needed to lead to be seen at his best, was third. Viking Jack was fourth, with Clonkeen Snowy (trap three) and Catrigg Croft – John Sharp’s duo – were fifth and sixth respectively.

 

Having brushed aside Satin Mark at the fourth bend, Patchys Kerry shot clear. Viking Jack moved into second but there was no catching Patchys Kerry who pulled ahead close home to score by a shade over five lengths in a smart 38.77sec.

Trainer Mark Wallis, winning the event for the first time, said: “It’s fanatasic. I’m really pleased. It was a very professional performance. There were some good dogs in that race, and what a run from Viking Jack – I thought he was a credit to connections.

“There aren’t many greyhounds that win three Category Ones and hopefully there are more to come for her. We’re looking at the Regency. It’s always a great race and we have others to go there – including Billys Bullet. I would have thought Patchys Kerry will go into that as one of the favourites.”

Frank Taylor, the owner of Patchys Kerry, said: “I think she is one of the best bitches I’ve ever seen. I was worried about tonight -especially with the trap draw. Trap five (Catrigg Croft) is a bang railer but it all ended well and I’m over the moon.”

 

REST OF THE CARD

Patchys Kerry’s win apart, it was a great night for Mark Wallis who had three other winners – Domino Storm, Airforce Duchess and Calco Flyer. Barrie Draper, the local trainer, also had an open race treble with Glenpadden Ace, Ballymac Mossjoe and Worsboro Spectre.