THE GREYHOUND WEEK BLOG: Julie Collier with all the latest news from the world of greyhound racing…..

➡️ Today, it’s the Boxing Day marathon at Crayford where Micks Little Gem is 4/9F for Michelle Brown after winning her heat in the quickest time of the round. The Dorando winner beat Burgess Honey by an impressive nine lengths, in 56.29sec. Veteran Aayamzabreeze was sent off 1/8F for her semi-final and she duly obliged, but it proved to be harder work than the price suggested it would be, as she was well led early. However, her stamina kicked in on the final lap and she hit the front at the penultimate bend, winning in 57.10sec. She is second in the betting at 9/4 with Star Sports to win the £2,500 prize. LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

➡️ Our congratulations go to Troy Bella who won the £3,000 National Sprint at Nottingham on Monday night. This dog has a big personality and the heart of a lion. He pinged out of trap 5 and never really looked in danger, winning by three quarters of a length in 17.79sec. The dog controversially missed out on a nomination for the Sprinter of the Year category at last years GBGB awards. I think he might be in there with a shout this year… LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

➡️ At Hove on Saturday night, the semi finals of the Olympic saw Liz and Rab McNair get their ‘three Kings’ through to the final. The same three dogs that featured in the British Bred Derby (where King Sheeran was victorious) will once again face each other in a big final. King Lennon ran on to take second behind an impressive Volcanic Reef for Heather Dimmock. Litter brothers King Sheeran and King Dylan landed a 1-2 for the kennel in the first semi final. Patrick Janssen’s Desperado Dan finished the third semi final strongly to pick up Shoot The Bolt by a length. Only 30 spots separated the semi-final winners, Volcanic Reef marginally the fastest clocking 30.59sec. Star Sports have priced up the final with King Sheeran the 5/2 favourite. LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

➡️ The Ballyregan Bob Memorial over 695m at Hove saw Affleck Lady go fastest (42.62). It was a 1-2 for Patrick Janssens with the amazing Goldies Hotspur, well into veteran status now, only just a head behind. Janssen’s has half the field for the final thanks to Skilful Sadie winning heat one after chasing down Roxholme Butt (42.65sec). And there was a 20/1 surprise from the Claude Gardiner kennel as Woodmancote Anna beat Teecee Dame (42.98sec). Skilful Sadie is favourite with Star Sports at 11/10. LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

➡️ In a one-off puppy open, Ken Tester’s Killeacle Gus once again impressed, completing a hatrick on just his fourth UK start and fifth race of his life. He is currently 80/1 with Star Sports for the Derby. LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

➡️ Regular column readers will remember my excitement and then injury updates to a beautiful Ernie Gaskin trained dog, Roman Empire. Well I am extremely pleased to report that he is back racing and looks in great order. He won a 575m race at Romford Friday night by over 5 lengths in a fastest of the night 35.01sec. I spoke to one of his owners, Kevin Dear, who was understandably delighted with the comeback and reports that he has come out of the race well. The Coronation Cup will be the next target and then, all being well, thoughts will surely once again turn to the Star Sports Derby… you can get on now at 33/1. LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

➡️ Also on Friday night at Central Park, Turnhouse Jet won his 12th race in a row over the 480m hurdle circuit. Priced at 1/10, he had to work harder than the odds suggested after being forced to check at the first bend, but eventually came through in 29.83sec beating kennel mate Lenson Wilson. The other heat went to Seamus Cahill’s Droopy’s Trawler who was just one spot slower, 29.84sec, beating Mane Mane. It seems to be a recurring theme this week for trainers to have three runners in a final as Ricky Holloway won the third heat with Shaneboy Bowie to give him half the field for the Boxing Day final. LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

➡️ There was a win for Levante Beach in the Alconex Northern Puppy Derby at Newcastle last Thursday, Angela Harrison’s dog claiming the £8,000 first prize after a fast start saw him home from a strong finishing Look Like Power. Levante Beach held on by half a length in 28.89sec. He is 33/1 for the Star Sports Derby. Ice On Fire put on another show for his fans as well in winning the Laurels final. For the first time in a while, the star greyhound of Jimmy Fenwick’s found he had company on the run to the first bend. He was out-trapped by Droopys Trapper but held his ground well at the first bend, barging through to lead at the first turn from where he stamped his authority, coming home five and a half lengths in front of Bower Luke in 28.57sec. That was his 10th win in a row, so it was great to hear Jimmy was off to buy him a his favourite plain cheeseburger from McDonalds on his way home! That will long be burned off come the first round of the Star Sports Derby in April for which he is still favourite, priced at 10/1. LATEST STARSPORTS.BET GREYHOUND MARKETS

I hope you all had a brilliant Christmas and for those of you heading out greyhound racing today, good luck!