Coolavanny Bert justified his position at the head of the market by winning last night’s Primus Telecom Puppy Derby Final in impressive fashion. The race was brought forward to 8.15 because of terrible weather conditions which saw temperatures drop as low as -6c at race time and as low as -10c later in the evening. The 1/3 favourite was always in control and went clear from the second bend clocking a winning time of 27.93s. 10/1 chance Droopys Stevie ran a very good race to finish second, just holding off Benkaat Blue back in third.
Both trainer Kelly Findlay and owner John Gardner were delighted with their greyhound’s performance. “He is very exciting,” said Kelly post race, “we all know trap one made the job easier but he’s still got to come out. Hopefully he’ll get an invitation to the Juvenile now.
“He could be anything because I do think there’s a bit more improvement to come. He’s a big-boned dog and, although he’s 35kg, he doesn’t look that big.”
John Garner had this to say after Coolavanny Bert’s victory: “He’s got a lot of early boot and I do think he looks a proper Wimbledon dog. It’s fantastic to own him and I feel very grateful that Mr Browne gave me the opportunity to buy him.”
Although the Cryptic Stayers race at 8pm had to be abandoned due to the traps being affected by the low temperatures, the staff at Henlow did a fantastic job to get the rest of the card completed. The track held up very well and there were no complaints from owners or trainers with the conditions for their competing greyhounds.
Other notable winners on the night included the veterans Delwood Robbo and Yahoo Jamie as well as the strongly backed Aero Majestic. Coolavanny Bert is now a best price of 16/1 with William Hill to win this year’s Wimbledon Derby and that price could well shorten further should Kelly Findlay star win the Racing Post Juvenile at the end of the month.