The annual coursing meeting in Freshford will be held on Thursday and Friday. This is the first time since the late sixties that the meeting is being run mid-week.
The meeting was first run in Uppercourt in 1919. The late Maeve and Jim Cuggy were the secretaries for 35 years. Maeve, who passed away during the year, gathered every programme of each meeting since 1919, apart from the 1920 one which eluded her.
The feature event is The Handsome Billa Purdon Cup for 16 all-age dogs and bitches with a winning prize of €1500. This is a nominator event, with all nominators coming from club members. Dogs to watch are Lord Bellevue, Tullamoy Gold, Feede A Slyde, Arise Sir Mark, Inner Circle, Belated Birthday and Face the Nation.
The one we like is Belated Birthday, a derby quarter finalist from last year when he was withdrawn injured.
The Derby Trial Stake is unprecedented this year with the number of local dogs involved. Fatherland, Ratoo James, Hello Alonso, Consideritsolved, Live Commander, Devon Meadows, Valley Henry, Thomas the Tank, Annual Tipp, Robbie’s Alonso, Dynamic Duo, Cracking Lord and Here comes Mafi are all local runners.
The one they all have to beat is Mister Music, a reserve trial stake winner already this year in Kilflynn. The winner of the Derby Trial Stake will represent Freshford in Clonmel which this year will be run on Saturday Sunday and Monday, February 2, 3 and 4, a weekend meeting for the first time.
The club will also run a 32 Reserve Oaks Trial Stake, an eight dog and bitch duffer for dogs that have not won more than two courses in any other stake. The Lodgepark Stud and Jack Kennedy Memorial Cup are confined to the working members of the club.
With Joe Crosby defending the crown with Miss Changer, the one they have to beat is Michael Bergin’s and Jimmy Tobin’s Killahy Babe, who ran well in an Oaks Trial Stake when she was beaten just up in the second round.
Coursing begins on Thursday 11am. The judge is Tom Lawler and the slipper is Brian Doyle. It is the first time Brian will slip a full meeting in Freshford. He takes over from Martin Glendon who retired from slipping at the end of last season.
The order of running on Thursday is twice through the Derby, Reserve Oaks and once through the All-age Cup. There is also an 11am start on Friday with the Jack Kennedy Memorial cup , Derby, Oaks, All-age Cup, Wall Cup and complete the card.
Mick Bergin Memorial Derby Trial Stake - Thomas the Tank v Barefoot Magnus; Newry Celtic v Illustrate; Tullamoy Magic v Hello Alonso; Robbies Alonso v Patterdale Bruno; Even one v Devon Meadows; Adios Also v Smokey Central; Mister Music v Crescent Cottage; Runaway Raskel v Gortglas Bex; Annual Tipp v Consideritsolved; Dale Bango v Fatherland; Lisloose Bolt v Cracking Lord; Ratoo James v Sudden Reject; Gortfree Magic v Dynamic Duo; Crafty Barrazo v Bushfield; Valley Henry v Live Commander; Mutts Brother v Here Comes Mafi. Res - Hold your Line, Barneys Feelgood, Fee Fontaine, Kingcormac Con.
Din and Martin Lennon Memorial Reserve Oaks Trial Stake - Battstreet lill v Rouguefort Hazel; Miss Clementine v Radiant Shore; Mardine Katie v Sudden Daz; Blooming Large v Runaway Gorgeous; Valley Dawn v Aarons Lotto Lady; Lady Master v Patterdale Dolly; Kingsmill Lil v Gillogue Magic; Coshair Gone v Cleasai; Suirview Vicky v Youragallery; Martys Sam v Avon Tigress; Woodenstown Twin v Lizdaleen Blaze; Vandas Glory v Liz’s Jewel; Capetown Alice v Amazing Rocket; Marshals Lass v Coolree Boom; Cois Molly v Gentstown Mini; Ready To Tar v Bud’s Decision. Res - Coarse Park Star, Malachik, Beepers Laura, Ross Marie.
Lodgepark Stud and Jack Kennedy Memorial Cup (local stake) - Hey Soul Sister v Lemon Asia; Killahys Babe v Maggies Time; Robbies Image v Cill Dubh Molly; Impact Rose v Jeffy’s Singer; Miss Changer v Lady Go Bang; Pick Pocket v Late Start; Lacken Teddy v Handsome Brendan.
Handsome Billa-Purdon Cup (all age) - Ridgemount Mac v Inner Circle; Marshals Duke v Runaway Bandit; Arise Sir Mark v InAction; Feede A Slyde v Jeffies Harper; Lord Bellvue v Crafty Estro; Belated Birthday v Carrick Tobin Lad; Face The Nation v Tullamoy Gold; Drifting Onward v Clodiagh United. Res - Carricktobin, Handsome Jack.
Sean Flynn Memorial and Wall Cup - Blue Brass v Express Dancer; Coshair Pappi v Consideritdone; Foulkscourt Ben v Cill Dubh Tommy; Slaneyside Niall v Clonmantagh Matt. Res - Fairyfield Pirlo, Flomur Antics.