With the weather still on the dry side, a lot of coursing clubs are finding it difficult to attract the big names to their meeting. Crohanes field is in my opinion in the top 5 in the country. A gradual rise from slips up to the escape and super hares year in year out. The All age cup this year while not star studded in the line out will no doubt be ultra competitive.
The opening buckle sees the extremely fast Coffee glendower meeting Inch Harp. Coffee Glendower has never reached the same heights as he did when a pup. In his juvenile year he was touted as a possible derby winner after romping to victory in his TS in Milstreet. He has yet to recapture this form but I think he might have a little too much for Inch Harp who won a stake at his local meeting in Templetuohy last year. Next up we have Sudden Cas and Fhink fast Fred. Fhink fast Fred ran last week in Ballyheigue where he won two rounds – indeed his second round clock according to ICC was the second fastest in the field. Sudden Cas did not have a busy season as a pup where the exertions in Glin might have took its toll on him. He clocked up well in the TS where many a TS winner came from. On all known form Fhink fast Fred will be the favourite but if back to his best don’t rule out Sudden Cas.
The 3 rd round should see Cracking Jet win his first course of the season. Although beat well in Cashel last week, he should still have too much experience for the track bred Skywalker Apache. The final course in the top half should be close. Jess like that is ever consistent reaching at least the semi final of stakes in 6 outings. He opened his coursing life with a victory in crohane 2 years ago while last year found it difficult to win. He does have excellent course form with a TS win and a pup in the cup last year so the field is clearly to his liking. Let’s have it ran 8 times last year, with his best performance in Wexford where he was beat by the TA Morris stakes winner Cuine rock in the final of the Derby TS. I think Jess like that will progress
The opening course of the 2 nd half will be the course of the meeting. Here we have the boylesports favourite Wyken Power (5/2) against the Kilflynn All age semi finalist Call him Bale. Wyken power is a super fast hound who ran with distinction in the Irish cup last year. He was beat by New Inn wonder in the ¼ finals. He won his TS in Wexford 2 years ago and last year won the cup in Gorey. Call him bale was very busy last year and connections want to keep him as busy again. He ran 3 weeks ago in Kilflynn where he was beat in the semi final. I feel he does his best running early in the meetings so im expecting a titanic battle here with Wyken Power just the fancy if he is ready! Magical Eddie never reached the heights of his litter sisters but showed speed last year. He was beat by Crafty Yahoo in Borrisoleigh when well fancied and was purchased afterwards. He meets the unraced Skywalker Echo in the opening round and should have enough to go through. Rathchies apache is a very fast dog. He won the local stake here last year and ran with credit in Sevenhouses. He was reportedly unlucky in Knockgraffon in the all age highlighting his ability. His opponent Kingtone Ace has run 8 times with a 3 rd round defeat his best performance. He might come up short here
The final buckle sees the other rover v Marshals mercury. Marshal’s mercury was very unlucky not to qualify for the champion stakes last year. He won the cup here last year while he was withdrawn in the final of the all age stake in Clonmel / kilsheelan. He obviously had some sort of setback as he did not appear until Templetuohy and never ran in the Irish cup. If back to his best I think he will be the dog to beat. He is lightly raced, likes the field and comes from top connections. Overall I am picking him to be victorious Sunday evening with the 4/1 quote from boylesports looking attractive as he should reach the semi finals at least.