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YOU sort of get the feeling that Billys Bullet believes he has unfinished business with the Coral Regency at Hove after he fractured a hock in the first round of the competition last year.

The dog trained by Mark Wallis for Billy Boyle and Scot Murray was the ante-post favourite for the 695-metres competition 12 months ago on the back of eight wins from 11 starts leading up to the event. Those included victory in the Prestige at Hall Green and a new track record over 660 metres at Sheffield.

Disaster struck in the first round. Billys Bullet fractured a hock when leading his field during the latter stages of his qualifier, and his future on the track looked uncertain.

But a protracted spell on the treatment table, during which Team Wallis applied just the right amount of physio care and patience, has enabled Billys Bullet to make it back to the track, and on Wednesday he will line-up for the £10,000 final.

He does so on the back of a two cracking performances in the preliminaries, capped by an impressive strong-running length and three-quarter lengths success over Jet Stream Trail in 41.94sec (0.45sec slow) in the first semi-final last night.

Having recorded a fluent front-running success in the first round, Fizzypop Buddy was forced to draw on the gritty, tough-it-out side to his character in the third semi-final.

The big-priced runner Mustang Chick (trap two) broke best and led Patches Kerry (trap one) in the early stages. The latter came into the competition with three Category One successes in the last eight months under her belt but her star has faded after two underwhelming performances over track and trip.

Patches Kerry challenged Mustang Chick around the final two turns but neither had the energy for a final push, and it was left to Fizzypop Buddy, who had broken slowly and had been closer to last than first for four bends, to come with a wet sail on the outside and register what in the end was a comfortable four and three-quarter lengths win in 42.04sec. (0.45sec slow)

Digby Mia continued to exploit a rich seam of form in the second semi-final for Sittingbourne trainer Daniel Brabon. There is so much to like about the attitude of this January 2014 whelp who clearly has an affinity with Hove’s six-bend trip having now won four from five starts over it.

Digby Mia is all about early speed and he showed it in spades when making all to register a near ten lengths victory over Droopys Flash in 41.99sec (0.45sec slow).



June Harvey (Fizzypop Buddy): “He has come out of the race well and we are looking forward to the final. He is an incredible dog – he can do it from the front and he also has the ability to tough it out from behind. We have had him out this morning and you wouldn’t know he has had a race. He is that well. I would have liked trap five in the final. I think Digby Mia could present us with a few problems early on, but as long as they all come off sound I will be happy. Here’s hoping it’s a good clean race. It is great to be there.”

Mark Wallis (Billys Bullet): “Absolutely delighted to have reached the final with Billy. To be honest he is now running as well as he has since returning from what was a very serious injury. It has been a long road back and I must thank the team here (at Imperial Kennels) for all their hard work and dedication. He is not as quick as he was, we didn’t expect him to be. I don’t think it’s the leg playing him up but more fitness. It is difficult to attain the level of fitness he had before the injury. We also had a problem in the build up to the Regency. He had a badly spiked toe after a run at Sheffield and that hasn’t helped. The draw in the final (trap four) could have been better but the dog is in good form and I’m sure he’ll run big race.”

Daniel Brabon (Digby Mia): “He was bought as a graded stayer so he has already surpassed what was expected of him. I’m really pleased with the way he has been running and he clearly loves Hove. He has come out of Thursday’s race well and we are looking forward to the final. I’ve run the race time and time again in my head and I we definitely have to lead. He won’t win from behind. In that regarded I think it is best that we are drawn inside Fizzypop Buddy.”


The Regency Final 04/05/2016


Final Draw


1 Jet Stream Trail

2 Fabulous Model

3 Droopys Flash

4 Billys Bullet

5 Digby Mia (w)

6 Fizzypop Buddy (w)


FIZZYPOP BUDDY was more workman-like than spectacular at the semi-final stage on Thursday and clocked the slowest time of the three qualifiers. But June Harvey’s dog is in a good place at the moment and will ask a huge question of the others if getting a clear run.

Digby Mia is in cracking form – he has won his two preliminary rounds by a combined 15-and-a-quarter-lengths – and is set to play a part in the decider. Billys Bullet continues to impress and won’t be far away either.


PAT ROSNEY hasn’t got a dog in this year’s William Hill Derby but if bookmakers were to open a book on the 2017 Derby I reckon his Blissful Scolari would be pretty close to being favourite.

The June 2014 whelp has captured the imagination like no other in the inaugural running of this £5,000-to-the-winner competition, and he powered his way into Wednesday’s final with another faultless display in the first semi-final over 515 metres at Hove on Thursday.

The son of Droopys Scolari was led early by Magical Scotty but he glided into the lead approaching the turn. The talented Droopys Missouri caught the eye with a resolute run to take second but he was still three lengths adrift of the winner who posted 30.00sec (0.30sec slow). Magical Scotty was third.

Paul Young, the trainer of Droopys Missouri, booked his second runner into the decider when Young Force outlasted his rivals in the second semi-final. Droopys Rogue took them along but was passed by Young Force off the last turn. The winner scored by a length and a quarter in 30.51sec (0.30sec slow). Favourite Guinness Four encountered trouble on the run-in but filled the remaining qualifying position.



Pat Rosney (Blissful Scolari): “We couldn’t be happier with him. He looks a fabulous prospect but it is important to remember he is taking on dogs of a similar age and experience. He isn’t trapping as well as we know he can. He was breaking much better in his trials at Perry Barr but they use different boxes there and that might be the reason he isn’t trapping as well at Hove. We are looking forward to the final. It is a good race and I have the utmost respect for all the finalists but I fear Droopys Missouri in particular. He is out of a top class bitch (Droopys Laramie) and has plenty of ability.”


The Brinkleys Estate Unraced Final 04/05/2016

1 Droopys Rogue

2 Young Force (m)

3 Blissful Scolari (m)

4 Magical Scotty (m)

5 Droopys Missouri (w)

6 Guinness Four (w)


BLISSFUL SCOLARI is hard to oppose on what we have seen so far but this is the type of competition that could easily throw up an unexpected result.

The chief danger to Blissful Scolari is without doubt Droopys Missouri, who could easily be as promising a talent as Pat Rosney’s dog. It looks like a cracking final and we are sure to hear of all six finalists in the rest of the puppy competitions through the year.