IRELAND’S big three of Ardkill Jamie, Razldazl Billy and Si Senor head the exceptionally strong entry for the two-run Boylesports Champion Stakes which is set to commence at Shelbourne Park on Saturday night.
Their presence alone will guarantee massive crowds at headquarters over the coming two weekends but there is no way that this €40,000 to the winner event can be regarded as merely a three-dog affair.
Far from it, with the likes of defending champion Large Mac, Derby favourite Bar The Devil, St Leger winner Lughill Jo, Produce Stakes favourite Team Captain, Cesarewitch winner Micks Savings and English Derby finalist Ullid Conor among the rivals.
The two-run Champion Stakes has become one of the top events on the calendar and its two-run format just before the Derby is seen by many as the ideal preparation for the Paddypower.com Irish Derby. There is an added bonus, of course, in that the six Champion finalists will be exempted from contesting the first round of the Derby . Due to the volume of entries, a subsidiary Boylesports Champion Plate is being run and the winner will receive €6,000.
The big talking point will be the meeting of Si Senor and Ardkill Jamie in the third heat. Add in last year’s winner Large Mac, the brilliantly fast Goldstar Lee and UK racers Greenwell Storm and Eye Onthe Veto and we have a race worthy of a Derby final.
Last year’s Derby winner Razldazl Billy goes from trap five in an opening heat that also includes national 550 record holder Hondo Dingle, St Leger winner Lughill Jo and top racers Team Captain, Droopys Electric and Tyrur Bertie. Bar The Devil returned to form in the International last week and will be fancied in a second heat that includes English Derby finalist Ullid Conor, English tracker Blonde Dino, Cesarewitch winner Micks Savings and the potentially brilliant Jaxerback.
The draw for Saturday’s Boylesports Champion Stakes semi-finals is:
Heat 1: 1 Hondo Dingle; 2 Team Captain; 3 Droopys Electric (m); 4 Lughill Jo (m); 5 Razldazl Billy (m); 6 Tyrur Bertie (m).
Heat 2: 1 Ullid Conor; 2 Bar The Devil; 3 Jaxerback; 4 Mardocs Heinze (m); 5 Micks Savings (m); 6 Blonde Dino (m).
Heat 3: 1 Si Senor; 2 Ardkill Jamie; 3 Large Mac (m); 4 Greenwell Storm (m); 5 Goldstar Lee (m); 6 Eye Onthe Veto (w).
Draw for the Boylesports Champion Plate semi-finals is: Hat 1: 1 Green Heat; 2 Comical Mix; 3 Blessed; 4 Lightning Bozz (m); 5 Very Bad Tonight (w); 6 Ballydaniel Bret (w).
Heat 2: 1 Deanridge Newman; 2 Cherokee Playboy; 3 Kylegrove Top; 4 Tyrur Pedro; 5 Brennans Pride (m); 6 Toosey Blue (w).
Heat 3: 1 Side Sage; 2 Shelbourne Aston; 3 Ballymac Flight; 4 Tyrur Rhino (m); 5 So Determined (m); 6 All Heart (w).
Razldazl BIlly, Champion Stakes 2007
This story appeared in the printed version of the Irish Examiner Thursday, July 19, 2007