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Greyhound Media Group Puppy Classic - Nottingham 500m - £7,500

DROOPYS GOLD, trained by Seamus Cahill, set the standard in the heats of the Greyhound Media Group Puppy Classic at Nottingham with a fastest-of-the-year front-running effort over 500m on Monday night.

 

The September 2015 son of Loughteen Blanco and Droopys Force, who impressed on Derby final night at Towcester in the puppy race, had also starred for Cahill on Sussex Cup final night. He has now won his last four races and has an overall record of nine wins from 14 starts.

 

After seeing his youngster lead early on his way to a 29.36sec (+60) success, Cahill said: “He ran great and remains a real prospect for the future. He's got all-round gears and knows how to win races, and for his owners (Schilly Money Syndicate) he's proving a very good buy. They've interests in the horses, too, but are enjoying the dogs just as much!"

 

Ante-post favourite Droopys Expert cruised to a solid success in heat five, as Angela Harrison’s Sunderland Puppy Plate second justified odds of 1-3 when racing away from his rivals off the first bend to stop the clock in 29.43sec.

 

Heat one went to the Kevin Hutton-trained bitch Madabout Maggie, who paced up to lead into the bend for a 29.70sec (+60) score, while Corren Price’s Vigorous Becca also struck for the girls when making all comfortably and impressively in heat two in 29.39sec (+60)

 

On what proved a good night for bitches, another Hutton-trained youngster Ballydoyle Maura landed an all-the-way victory in 29.57sec (+60), before Charlie Lister’s Cain Hill, bouncing back from a recent Doncaster defeat, wrapped up the first round when scoring in 29.77sec (+60).

 

The final race on the card on Monday, the Betfred 480m Trophy, saw another Lister-trained racer land the spoils with William Hill Classic winner Newinn Shadow racing away to an impressive 28.20sec (+60). His time was another fastest-of-the-year over the shorter four-bend trip.

 

Dave Baldwin, Nottingham’s general manager, said: “I thought the debutants particularly ran really well - Kevin's and Corren's. They lacked the experience of Droopys Gold and Expert but impressed us with how they handled the track. It's shaping up to be another terrific Puppy Classic and we look forward now to Monday's semi-finals.”