DESPITE being five points adrift of the leaders in the BETDAQ Premier League confidence in landing the championship is hardly ebbing away in the Team North East camp, which will go out all guns blazing for the penultimate round of the competition at Doncaster on Friday.
That skipper Ian Lavery MP and his squad have nominated Tudor Prince as their joker in leg three (the standard once-rounder) bears testament to the fact that the original ante-post favourites for the title have far from given up the ghost as the 483 metres contest is the arguably the most competitive race of the night.
The Harry Williams-trained Tudor Prince meets the likes of the Kent Derby first and second, Jazz Apollo and Local Dee Jay, plus three accomplished runners in the outside traps, but he will not be meeting his nemesis, Mill Bling Bling at Donny, and Williams will probably be thankful for that!
Tudor Prince chased home Mill Bling Bling in all three of team mate Kelly Macari’s Category 1 event victories, the Eclipse, Steel City Cup and All England Cup, but the pride of the North East has a night off tonight and the Williams dog can prove to be a most able alternative challenger.
“He usually runs at the very highest level, is seldom out of the first two and I’m hopeful he can score well and, if he’s on the premises, his points will be doubled as our joker. In fact he is just the sort of dog you would want as a joker.
“I was very pleased with him when he ran third to Eden Star in the Laurels final at Belle Vue in November and, in fact, he has been a lovely dog to train, you’d dream for a kennel full of runners like him!” Tudor Prince ran a creditable course and distance trial last week, knows his way around Doncaster and may be the answer in what is a race to savour.
Williams, like many trainers who have embraced the Premier League, says the competition is a “brilliant idea” but feels there is room for a little fine-tuning. “Like anything new you learn with experience and this event can only get better, it’s great fun and highly competitive.”
The entire card is one to look forward to, the five Premier League races bring out many talented runners and with races around two, four and six bends, plus a puppy event, thrown in for added spice this is a meeting not to miss.