Predicting the final six for the final of the BoyleSports Irish Greyhound Derby proved difficult, even for those who claimed to have inside knowledge, however the final spots have now been filled and what an incredible two semi-finals proved to be !

Ultimately the headlines will go to Pat Guilfoyle trained Music Glideaway and Jennifer O’Donnell trained The Other Kobe.  Both took the bull by the horns and dominated in their respective semi-finals. There were so other superb performances in the semi finals last weekend.It all leaves for plenty of debate ahead of the biggest race of the Irish greyhound racing calendar year. Every dog still have a chance.

This year four of the spots went to Tipperary based trainers with the final two spots claimed by a Monaghan based trainer and Wicklow based trainer.

Final Trap Draw:

1.Well Met – trained by Monaghan based trainer John Jones                               (4/1)

2. The Other Kobe – trained by Tipperary based trainer Jennifer O’Donnel    (2/1)

3. Bens Teddy – trained by Tipperary based trainer Pat Buckley                         (7/2)

4. Threesixfive – trained in Wicklow by Scott Phelan                                               (33/1)

5. Bockos Cyrstal – trained by Tipperary based trainer Graham Holland        (5/1)

6.Music Glideaway (w) – trained by Tipperary based trainer Pat Guilfoyle   (4/1)  See

The final of the BoyleSports Irish Greyhound Derby takes place on Saturday 2nd September at Shelbourne Park Greyhound Stadium and can also be viewed on Racing Post Greyhound TV and Virgin Media Three.

Picture captioned as above;

John Jones, trainer of Well Met in Trap 1, Brian Clare co-owner of The Other Kobe in Trap 2, Spike Murphy co-owners of Bens Teddy in Trap 4, Scott Phelan trainer of Threesixfive in Trap 4, Beverley Lochead owner of Bockos Crystal in Trap 5 and Bob Shanahan, a member of The Pension Plan Syndicate, co-owner of Music Glideaway in Trap 6. Pictured in centre are Leon Blanche Commercial Director of Greyhound Racing Ireland receiving the trophy from Sharon McHugh PR and Sponsorship Manager at BoyleSports, celebrating 10 years in 2023 as sponsors of the Irish Greyhound Derby.

Full Race Report from the Semi-Final Nights and path to the final:

In the first semi-final Music Glideaway, despite his wonderful draw in the stripes was sent to traps the 5- third choice in the market and those that stayed loyal to the Tipperary trained star were rewarded handsomely.

This was a race that was effectively decided in the opening two strides. Music Glideaway has always been a fast greyhound but has largely been inconsistent, if not tardy, at traps. That was not the case in the quarter finals and he again shot from boxes in the semis.

We knew our three qualifiers from as early as the second bend. Music Glideaway, owned by the Limerick based Bob Shanahan led Pension Plan Syndicate, was on his way to a brilliant victory. Maintaining a relentless gallop throughout, Music Glideaway went on to see off Well Met (trained by Monaghan based trainer John Jones) by four lengths in a rapid 29.32. Threesixfive (trained in Wicklow by Scott Phelan) ran on well to finish just a half-length behind Well Met in third.

The second heat was also won by a 5-1 chance as The Other Kobe produced yet another flying exit to make every inch for Tipperary Trainer Jennifer O’Donnell, emulating his litter-brother Born Warrior, who both made and won the 2022 Irish Greyhound Derby decider.

But as with the opening heat, this was over in an instant. The Other Kobe, owned by Brian Clare, Aidan Walshe & David L’estange, is clearly in the form of his career and after flashing from traps to hold the advancing Bockos Crystal into the turn, he was always in command.

The race was now on. It was clear The Other Kobe was going to take some catching once turning in front and so it proved by the race for the remaining qualifying places was wide open. Obviously, Bockos Crystal, after turning second, was going to be very hard to knock out of the frame but the battle for third was epic.

De Lahdedah was third into the back but edging off the fence, was forced to check across the heels of Bockos Crystal. It was to prove his undoing as Coolavanny Shot past him. De Lahdedah would suffer further crowding on the third turn, ending any hope of making it through.

Coolavanny Hoffa and Bens Teddy were then left in a straight shootout for the third qualifying spot. The Other Kobe was on his way to victory, however. The race was for second was ultra-competitive. In the end, neither Coolavanny Hoffa or Bockos Crystal could contain the late charge of Bens Teddy.

The latter absolutely flew home to see off Bockos Crystal by a length.

The Ringsend venue will guarantee an action packed night with the blue riband, derby final, promises a final as intriging as ever.There will also be the Micheal Fortune Memorial Final and the Consolation Derby on the night with 12 top class races on the programme.

Doors Open: 4:30pm 1st Race: 7:20pm. Live music after racing.

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