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William Hill All England Cup/Northern Puppy Derby - Newcastle 480m - £10,000/£8,000


GREYHOUND of the Year Droopys Buick (picured above at Monmore) and rising star Droopys Expert gave local trainer Angela Harrison the perfect start to the William Hill All England Cup at Newcastle on Saturday, on a night when Roxholme Nidge celebrated news of his GBGB/GWA Greyhound of the Month award for September with victory in his heat of the William Hill Northern Puppy Derby.


Six heats of the All England Cup and four heats of the Northern Puppy Derby produced some high-class action for a decent Newcastle crowd, and they were treated to another near track record-breaking performance from young star Droopys Expert as he recorded the third fastest ever time at the Byker venue when stopping the clock at 28.00sec for 480m in heat five of the All England Cup.


Only Droopys Shearer’s track record of 27.90sec and Droopys Expert’s own 27.98sec last week in a prep race have been quicker, and the October 2015 son of Greenwell Hawk and Droopys Rhiona had clockwatchers purring again as he trapped smartly, led up, and drew right away to win by ten lengths to set the standard in the £10,000-to-the-winner event.


Ian Walton, Newcastle general manager, said: “It was an incredible run. He’s the real deal, and in the space of a week Angela’s dog has almost rewritten the record books, and it was a performance befitting such a night of top quality action. The All England Cup just goes from strength to strength and there were almost too many great efforts to mention.


“The semi finals have produced some mouthwatering clashes. Murrys Act can only improve, as can Roxholme Nidge in the Puppy Derby. Who knows, with the benefit of a look, could he bring a sub-28 seconds run to the table? But overall, what a night. There was a cracking atmosphere here - thank-you to William Hill and, if you love greyhound racing, trackside at Newcastle on a Saturday night is the place to be!”


Droopys Buck did not let his legion of supporters down in the heats as the Conlon Family-owned Monmore Gold Cup winner cut loose from the inside in heat one of the All England Cup in 28.12sec, winning by five and a quarter lengths with connections hoping for better luck than 12 months ago when, after an impressive heat victory, he had to be withdrawn having picked up an injury.


Burgess Sugarray landed a 16-1 surprise in heat two, but it was fully merited as the Debbie Calvert-trained runner paced up to lead at the bend and drew away into the third bend and won well by four and a lengths in 28.64sec, while Steve Anderson’s Bramble Johnted came through strongly at the third bend in heat three to win a troubled heat three in 29.19sec.


Champion Stakes winner Murrys Act swooped on the run for home to catch longtime leader Farloe Thor in heat four after breaking well but being bumped sideways at the turn. Kevin Boon’s dog won in 28.44sec, while Kelly Macari’s recent Irish intake Skywalker Manner made a winning UK debut in heat six as last years’ Cork Laurels hero made all in 28.61sec.


Gary Carmichael’s Gazilly Shay set the standard on the clock in the Northern Puppy Derby heats as the young son of Droopys Cain produced a strong running performance to win heat three, catching Ballymac Dympna at the third bend before drawing clear to win impressively by five and a half lengths in 28.52sec.


However it was Roxholme Nidge who took the plaudits when overcoming a bump at the first bend, as he moved off after pacing up to lead, to win heat two. The Romford Puppy Cup winner had arrived without a trial and will be expected to improve ahead of Saturday’s semi-finals, but stretched out nicely once clear off the second to win by three and a half lengths in 28.54sec.


Stole My Baby led home hot favourite Droopys Zephyr to win the opening heat for Airdrie-based trainer Andrew Wood in 28.77sec, while Nottingham handler Alec Stone’s newcomer Cuba, a half-brother of Swithins Brae, made a winning UK debut as he trapped smartly and was soon clear to win comfortably in 28.73sec.









Saturday’s semi-finals: