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Coral Coronation Cup- Romford 575m- £5,000


BRIGADIER BULLET (above) roared to favouritism for next week’s Coral Coronation Cup final after a brilliant performance in Friday’s third semi-final of the 575m annual at Romford. 

Trapping smartly, last year’s Essex Vase finalist was never headed as he powered clear to cross the line six and a quarter lengths clear of Romeo Mandate (John Mullins) in 34.95sec (+15) - to complete a Coronation Cup semi-final double for Mark Wallis.  

The champion trainer had earlier seen Chubbys Caviar produce a winning combination of speed and stamina as the Oaks finalist proved too strong for front-running Pink Osteria (Paul Young), coming through to win by two lengths in 35.35sec (+15).  

In between, Desperado Dan won the four-runner second semi-final for the Patrick Janssens kennel, which had earlier suffered the disappointment of having to withdraw the injured Barricane Carina from the same heat.  

Led out of the boxes by Saleen Ash, Desperado Dan was soon a clear second but slowly wore down the leader to hit the front at the sixth bend and then hold a challenge from the Tony Tuffin-trained Emers Mist to win by a short-head in 35.28sec (+15).  

Winning trainer Janssens said: “Dan has now won four of his five races since being stepped up in trip. He loves Romford, has a big heart, and has come on again since winning three A1s at Central Park in the summer as a pup.  

“Even at that stage, myself and Evan (Herbert, owner) thought he’d be ideal for 575m at Romford in time, and so it’s proved. He’s still only just two and now lines up in a top final. We’ve got a good draw - he just needs to trap to give himself a chance.”  

Janssens also praised his supporting marathon winner Goldies Hotspur, commenting: “She ran a brilliant race. Even 750m is on the short side now for her, but she’s won the Mitch Millward Marathon and run-up in both the TV Trophy and Boxing Day Marathon.  

‘With that record, we were all disappointed she wasn’t nominated in the marathon category at the Awards. She’s a very consistent greyhound and, while a veteran now, will be aimed at the Golden Jacket. She was a finalist there also last year.”  

Mark Arkell, the Romford RM, congratulated connections of all six finalists who will line up in next week’s £5,000-to-the-winner event, the year’s first major title.  

He said: ‘We’ve had a few hard luck stories this year, but have ended up with a cracking final. Favourites had the best of it last night in the semis, but I’m sure Patrick Janssens is pleased to get his Desperado Dan through after the earlier setback of Barricane Carina.  

“It’s nice to have a home trainer represented in the shape of Paul Young and his Pink Osteria, while John Mullins and Mark Wallis are always welcome here at Romford and have enjoyed plenty of success here in the past, of course.  

“Well done also to Henlow trainer Tony Tuffin, who must be quietly confident of going close in the final after his bitch’s run in her semi. It’s set up for a great final, supported by two other really cracking finals - especially the Standard!”  

Arkell, who took over the Romford hot-seat from retiring Peter O’Dowd, was among the first to congratulate his former boss after it was announced he is the latest recipient of the Greyhound Writers’ Association Services to Greyhound Racing Award winner.  

“It’s great to see Peter win the award. He’s been around a long time and literally knows everything about the game - and even before it’s happened, he must have a crystal ball! He’s been great to learn from and I’ll miss him around the place on a full time-basis.”  

Trap draw and form for Friday’s final: