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*Ballymac Merlin, winner of the 2021 Matchbook Irish St.Leger Final at Limerick Greyhound Stadium for Liam Dowling Ballymac Kennels in a time of 29.68 with Paul Geasley of Matchbook Betting Exchange & Shane Dowling of Ballymac Kennels

BALLYVAUGHAN’s Michael Costello had double the success in Galway track last weekend while a total of five Clare winners were celebrating on Thursday in Limerick.

With just Saturday racing this week due to the rugby game on Friday night, there was an eleven race card at Galway Track.

The A4 graded third contest developed into a match from a very early stags as both Pinnacle Rio and Orbsen Jet both came away smartly and matched strides towards the opening bend rounding which the Michael Costello of Ballyvaughan owned Pinnacle Rio was limit like as usual taking a length out of his rival in the process. Racing down the back, Orbsen Jet closed again on the leaders outer and leaving the back a half length separated the pair. Rounding the home bend though Pinnacle Rio (Rio Quattro-Fawn Samantha) railed superbly again as he stayed on well to score by a length and a half in 29.04.

The kennel double was completed in the concluding A2 graded contest as Pinnacle Abbie (Laughill Blake-Maries Legacy) made just about all the running to defeat Blakemount Lotto by a length and a half in 29.32. From traps Pinnacle Abbie trapped well in company with Blakemount Lotto and rounding the opening bend the eventual winner led by half a length. Racing down the back the advantage edged out to a length as Sports Academy tried to close in their place. Out front though Pinnacle Abbie was controlling matters as Blakemount Lotto tried to bridge the deficit but Pinnacle Abbie kicked on off the home turn to complete an excellent night for the kennel.

Clare natives John Collins and Albert Long were celebrating as Brickhill Daisy recorded her eighth career success and third on the bounce. In the tenth contest, an A2 graded 575 contest, Brickhill Daisy comfortably outpointed her rivals headed by Knockmeale Star by two and a half lengths in 31.91. The daughter of Droopys Sydney and Rathmeehan May trapped really smartly and striding out well on the run up she led Croaghil Doris by over two lengths rounding the opening bend. Racing down the back the lead extended to five lengths as Croaghill Doris and Breaghmore Joe gave chase but the winner although tying up slightly close home was never in any danger of been overhauled.

There was five Clare winners at last Thursday’s card at Limerick Greyhound Stadium. Cratloe’s Harry Galvin got the show on the road when Upland Grove recorded a career best run in 29.28, this was a second career win for this son of Droopys Cain and Star Princess

Inissloky Romeo continued Mary Crotty from O’Briensbridge’s recent vein of good form, Romeo led from trap to line to record win number 12 in 29.42 for an A3 contest, Romeo is a son of Romeo Recruit and Inislosky Swift. Gower Pam finished strongly to land the spoils for Ann and John Carey from Cooraclare, this was a second career win for this daughter of Droopys Roddick and Clounanna Pam and the winning time was 29.63.

Parteen based, Shanakyle Syndicate under the dutiful care of Joe Collins were delighted when their great campaigner Aarons Sensation got back to winning ways, a son of Ballymac Vic and Sensation Shiraz, he notched career win number 10 leading from trap to line in 29.00. And the bumper race of the evening went to Breda Casey from Newmarket-on-Fergus with Snuggie Rosie, it was a first career success for this daughter of Paddys Magic and Miles Girl in 29.57.

All eyes were on Limerick Greyhound Stadium on Saturday Night last as the Matchbook Betting Exchange Irish St. Leger came to a dramatic conclusion and despite heading into the decider as the 8/1 outsider, it was Ballymac Merlin who produced a phenomenal performance to hand Liam Dowling a second St. Leger triumph in three years.

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