Stake Races for 2018
|Stakes||Round 1||Round 2||Round 3||Round 4||Finals||Winner|
|2018 Orange Park Derby||1/15/2018||1/19/2018||1/22/2018||1/27/2018||2/3/2018|
|2018 James J Patton Silver Cup||2/19/2018||2/23/2018||2/26/2018||3/2/2018||3/10/2018|
|2018 IronHound Stakes||3/30/2018||4/2/2018||4/7/2018||4/14/2018|
|2018 bestbet Puppy Stakes||5/14/2018||5/18/2018||5/21/2018||5/26/2018||6/2/2018|
|2018 bestbet Sprint Classic||7/16/2018||7/20/2018||7/23/2018||7/28/2018||8/4/2018|
|2018 bestbet Derby||10/22/2018||10/26/2018||10/29/2018||11/3/2018||11/10/2018|
2/2/2008 Orange Park Derby Finals
Talk about deja vu! The other greyhound in the BJ Racing Kennel was the one who got it done in the finals of the 2008 $50,000 Orange Park Derby. For the second year in a row owner Henry Howe had a couple of greyhounds in the final and frankly the favorite of the two in both races was the 2007 $30,000 Clay County Classic winner Deco Deano. In 2007 it was Craigie Grandy who stepped up and went to the lead and coasted for the win and this year it was Seís Top Speed (Rooftop Moby-Crystal Riddell) who his the lid and survived at the wire to take home the lionís share of the $50,000 prize.
The BJ Kennel always has their greyhounds ready to go in the stakes finals and Saturday night in the 11th race it was business as usual. When the box opened up Seís Top Speed and Deco Deano came out in a hurry to take a dominate one, two stance at the start of the race. Grim Reaper also broke well and this trio would be duking it out near the front end for the majority of this effort.
By the far turn Reaper had caught up to the leader and was attempting to pass on the inside and that is where the trouble started. Top Speed moved back to the rail and offstrided Reaper who in turn shuffled back into Deano, taking both of them right out of contention for the rest of the race.
Slipping under Reaper in the far turn was race favorite Penny Candy and Uss California. No so lucky was Kiowa Pretence as he was pushed wide and had to make up even more ground to contend.
Really unaffected by the clip on her heels, Top Speed continued to drive around the turn and turned clear for home with a comfortable 3 length margin. Now everyone though that she was home free, except for the closers that were chasing her. This race was not over yet and it was going to get interesting as they approached the finish line.
Speed was coasting and the closers were coming. Penny Candy decided that she wasnít going down without giving her all and that is just what she did. As they crept closer and closer to the wire Candy left California behind and took off after the leader. With each stride she was getting closer and closer and closer to a victory. Speedís lead was shrinking and shrinking and shrinking, but was they enough time for Candy to get there before the wire? Could Top Speed hold on? It was a knock down drag out final few steps that left the two locked at the wire in a photo finish. Who had won? Speed by a head.
It was a great effort by both greyhounds and was really fun to watch as the early speed strength of one held off the late speed strength of another. Rounding out the rest of the field was the ultra fast closing Kiowa Pretence as Uss California settled for fourth. Deco Deano finished in 5th, Sweetsouthern in 6th, Grim Reaper in 7th and Stupendous Trent in last.
Over the past year they are on fire as they have won the 2007 Orange Park Derby, the 2007 Clay County Classic, the 2007 JGR Juvenile and the 2008 Orange Park Derby. Thatís 4 major stakes wins in 7 opportunities, pretty impressive as no other kennel has won more than one of the other 3.
Congratulation to the BJ Racing Kennels, Inc., owner Henry Howe and everyone who is connected with this early speed monster.