Sky Sports’ Darrell Williams has joined us to preview the Irish Derby heats on Friday with a best bet for each and every race, as well as a deadly double and a NAP to help you get your weekend off to a flyer.
Take a look at Darrell’s tips and his in-depth preview below.
The English Derby champion Priceless Blake is having a crack at the double. His form has been a little in and out this year but he put in a special performance at the Kilkenny trial. He looks ready to go.
There are some interesting dogs in this one but I think they’re all competing for the minor prize money behind Glengar Bale. He’s improving race by race, I’m not worried by whatever trap this dog gets, I think he can handle it. Not only do I think he’ll win the heat but I think he’s the bet of the night on Friday.
Newinn Taylor is the one to beat here with an absolutely incredible 12 out of 12. The longer run up will suit, we don’t know if 550 is ideal, but would you want to take on Newinn Taylor? Not me. I’m just going to enjoy this one.
The reining champion Lenson Bocko doesn’t have a gimme here. Deerjet Sydney’s on the back of a PB last time and will be looking to spoil the party. Buttsys Bengal has won six of seven but Lenson Bocko has won 13 of 16 and he’ll do for me.
I’m absolutely loving Pestana as a potential Irish Derby winner. Scintillating in the Champions Stakes, this one’s obviously improved plenty during lockdown. It’s a rotten draw out in five but he’s got loads and loads of speed. If you’re going to be Irish Derby champion you’re going to have to deal with tough tests like that.
There’s lots of in-form dogs in this race and plenty of improvers, too. It’s a tricky race but I want to be with Beachview Cognac here. Five wins from six over course and distance, the last two are PBs, I think it’ll handle any box, so he’ll do for me.
I can’t get away from Ballymac Cooper here. He’s got a new draw to deal with in red, but if he’s back to his best after injury then he should get his derby campaign off to the perfect start.
I’m very tempted to go with Ballymac Anton because he’s the perfect competition dog, Irish St Leger winner. However, I’m very, very intrigued for the make up of Glory Kilara in red because Ballymac Anton will give him plenty of racing room. Glory Kilara should be able to take the step up in trip and step up in class in his stride so I’ll take a chance with the dog with the best draw in this race, Glory Kilara in one.
This is trappy but I think Ropewalk Bhoy might just prove to be the one. He is a dog up in grade here but he has improved and I think he can handle it so I’m going to take Ropewalk Bhoy to win a tough-looking ninth heat.
This is really competitive. Lots of likely race improvers here. But again, I think we have to go with the one with the best draw, Catunda Logan in one. He’s getting close to last year’s form and that will be good enough for me.
Rockburst Mike’s hitting good form, Indesatchel shouldn’t be a maiden for much longer and Droopys Wyatt is on the improve. But, you’re going to have to argue a good case to put me off Realt Rabach who just gets better and is in flying form.
This is an absolute belter to bow out with. Skywalker Logan was third in the English Derby last year, but is he in that sort of form? He had a long break prior to last month’s return. How can you take on Deadly Missile? That run last time was absolutely incredible and he’s ready for a big Derby campaign. Exciting doesn’t do it justice and it’s a great way to end the night.
Darrell’s double: Glendar Bale and Pestana
There’s many possibilities I have to say, but Glendar Bale in Heat 2 at 20:01 is a youngster on the improve. I think he can foil Ballymac Kingdom and Glendar Bale is my NAP. The other one, I’ve got to go with him, Pestana.
He has a tough draw to overcome but he’s got lots and lots of speed. If he’s going to be the champ he’s got to deal with this task and much tougher ones to come too. Pestana in Heat 5 would be my next best pick.
Darrell Williams’ tips for the Irish Derby heats at Shelbourne Park on Friday
19:46 – Heat 1: Priceless Blake
20:01 – Heat 2: Glengar Bale (NAP)
20:19 – Heat 3: Newinn Taylor
20:34 – Heat 4: Lenson Bocko
20:51 – Heat 5: Pestana (NB)
21:08 – Heat 6: Beachview Cognac
21:24 – Heat 7: Ballymac Cooper
21:39 – Heat 8: Glory Kilara
21:57 – Heat 9: Ropewalk Bhoy
22:12 – Heat 10: Catunda Logan
22:27 – Heat 11: Realt Rabach
22:42 – Heat 12: Deadly Missile
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