There were plenty of thrills and spills at Kilkenny greyhound track on Friday night when the Gain Nutrition a3 stake moved to the second round.
After a number of close calls in the opening three heats, a hare malfunction caused the last heat to be declared void.
The decision was taken after the void race to re-run the fourth heat the following Friday night, postponing the semi-finals by a week.
The first heat saw a thrilling contest. There was little in it early on before Barefoot Banker powered into the turn to lead.
The pace setter was four lengths clear of Optimistic Misty out of the second bend. Devils Red Grey improved into second down the far side but remained three lengths adrift of Barefoot Banker.
Barefoot Banker tired in the shadow of the post and the Brian Ellard trained Devils Red Grey (Kinloch Brae-Jaytee Freddy) got up to win by a short head in 29.33.
The other heats brought success to Crossleigh Sven and there was a dead heat between Crossleigh Olaf and Bona Big Fella.
Patsy Browne memorial
Karlow Joe got the night off to a sizzling start with a brilliant 28.84 spin. After a level start Karlow Joe edged inwards from trap 4 and got the bend from those on his outer.
The leader moved five lengths clear of Sit Back at the second bend before adding a further two lengths to his advantage into the third. There was no stopping Karlow Joe as he stormed away to see off Sit Back by nine lengths.
Housed to perfection in trap 1, Condor Merlin was soon in stride in the next heat and he led to the first bend.
The leader was a length up on Sawdust Club coming out of the second after Sawdust Club got a dream run between the bends. There was no change in the order into the third as Condor Merlin remained a length clear.
In the latter stages, Condor Merlin asserted and powered away to win by five lengths in 29.22.
The third heat of the a2 stake was level early and into the first bend. Annual Duke ran off the bend, pushing Brackloon Titan a little further wide.
Brackloon Titan tracked well between the turns and hit the front going down the back straight. The new leader moved two lengths clear of Ping Putter turning for home.
Brackloon Titan, trained by Murt Leahy, held off the renewed effort of Brackloon Titan on the run to the line by two lengths in 29.09.
The fourth and final heat was won by the Karol Ramsbottom trained Boomalong.
The winner took a flyer from trap 5 and led the field into the first bend. Boomalong kicked three lengths clear into the second as Bagnelstown Boy gave chase.
Bagnelstown Boy closed to within two lengths at the third and looked a real danger. However, once they straightened up for home, Boomalong was never going to be passed, crossing the line a length and a half clear in 29.29.
The a1 525 contest was level from trap rise, but heading towards the first bend Lemon Reggie asserted to lead.
Reggie went on and was a length in front of High St Teddy at the second bend. Halfway down the back stretch, High St Teddy moved to challenge but Lemon Reggie kicked on and was three clear turning for home.
Lemon Reggie galloped on to seal an impressive victory by three and a half lengths in 29.05.
In the second heat of the valuable a3 stake, Garryglass Lee started fast and easily led into the first bend.
The leader was two lengths clear of Gowlane Scolari at the start of the back stretch but that advantage was halved into the third as the field closed up.
Garryglass Lee was swamped between the last two bends and failed to qualify.
It was Crossleigh Sven who finished best to defeat Philliblue by a length in 29.49.
There was more success for the Crossleigh prefix in the third heat of the Gain Dog Food Nutrition stake as Olaf dead-heated with Borna Big Fella in 29.47.
Howsyerdaymissus shaded it early on, but it was Borna Big Fella who got the bend.
The new leader held a two length lead over Tarsna Baby Jane at the second bend, an advantage he extended to three lengths around the third although now it was Crossleigh Olaf in pursuit.
Crossleigh Olaf stormed up the rails as Borna Big Fella battled on. The pair crossed the line together and the judge could not separate them.
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