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Verve Impresses in Derby Trial Stakes

Droopys Verve making his debut at Newcastle last year; impressive on Saturday night


The build up the Star Sports Derby continued on Saturday night with Towcester holding five trial stakes over the 500m trip. Richard Yeates’ Brave Venture (29.38) justified favouritism in the first stakes by beating second placed Ruthless Robbie by a massive eight and three- quarter lengths. Smartly away out of trap three, Brave Venture led from the off and was followed up the run up by Ruthless Robbie, who maintained his position and finished second. Fernisky Pixie (T6) got to the first bend marginally in front of Pack Your Case (T5), but cut into the rail, badly bumping the latter and ending his chances. There was an eye catching performance from Laurence Tuffin’s Heroic Miss (T4), whose tardy start meant she missed the first bend trouble but ran on from last place to catch Fernisky Pixie for third.

There was more first bend trouble in the second stakes where Welloiledmachine (T5) cut into the rail behind Westmead Chief (T6), causing a pile up that knocked over Liam Og (T3) and badly hampered A Tiny Horse (T1) and Blackeyed Hula (T2). Ballymac Reds (T4) was able to ride the first bend bump and caught Westmead Chief when the latter went wide down the back straight. Sticking to the rails, Ballymac Reds (29.91) just held on to win by three quarters of a length from the fast finishing Welloiledmachine.

The third stake was trouble free, which meant that Droopys Verve’s (T5) performance in defeating King Kid (T6) and Bruisers Bullet (T1) was even more impressive for a puppy taking on and beating more experienced rivals. Very quick away, Droopys Verve (28.87) led up from King Kid and pulled away from the second bend. Favourite Bruisers Bullet ran on well and only narrowly failed by a short head to catch King Kid.

Bombers Bullet (T2) made up for a poor start in the fourth stakes, catching the fast starting Bit View Knight (T1) on the run up to score by half a length (29.31). Calico Ranger (T6) made an even worse start than Bombers Bullet and showed impressive track craft to work his way through the field from the back from the second bend to take third by a length from Droopys Live (T3).

Favourite backers could be forgiven for counting their cash as Droopys Polly (T2) broke rapidly and led around the second bend by three lengths in the last stakes. However, Bubbly Big Eddie (T1), gradually reeled her and caught her on the run in to score by a length. Having won over 515m at Hove, Bubbly Big Eddie (29.39), clearly stays the 500m at Towcester well and a bit more alacrity at the start should serve him well in the Derby proper. Ninja Penny (T3) benefitted from Bull Run Bolt (T4) swinging wide off the first bend, forcing Coolavanny Bear (T6) and Colston Legend (T5) wide and opening up a gap for Mark Wallis’ bitch for her take third place, which she held to the line.

There is a final round of trial stakes on Saturday night with the competition closing to entries the following Tuesday 24th.