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First Coral Coronation Cup victory for Hockwold's Patrick Janssens

Patrick Janssens has tipped his first Coral Coronation Cup winner Desperado Dan for the top, calling the two-year-old his ‘up-and-coming star’.

The race, held at Romford Greyhound Stadium last Friday night, saw Dan romp home in a time of 35 seconds and 27 milliseconds to claim gold over the five other entrants.

The Hockwold-based greyhound trainer explained that the young dog had only just progressed to races held over 575m, but had quickly adapted to the distance.

“We thought he would have a good chance, he’s only a young dog but he has a lot of talent,” Janssens said. “It’s a great feeling to win the Coronation Cup for the first time.

ALL SMILES: Owner Evan Herbert (with trophy), trainer Patrick Janssens (third from left) celebrate their success
ALL SMILES: Owner Evan Herbert (with trophy), trainer Patrick Janssens (third from left) celebrate their success

“We stepped him up to 575 in December, when he was just 23 months old, and he’s just getting better and better.

“I have a lot of really good dogs here and have a lot of hope for the year, but Desperado Dan is the young and up-coming star to watch.

“He won the race in his fastest ever time too, which is really encouraging.”

Although Dan was second-favourite and, therefore, considered a serious contender for the title, the win saw Janssens pip former boss Mark Wallis’ pair – which included favourite Brigadier Bullet – into second and third place.

Desperado Dan, who also landed owner Evan Herbert a second victory in the event after Roswell Romanov two years ago, was soon in front after breaking smartly and was never headed.

Favourite Brigadier Bullet broke well outside but was soon joined by kennel-mate Chubbys Caviar and, while the latter was bumped at the turn, rode well to give chase.

But the son of Iso Octane and Slaneyside Mandy kept up the gallop at the front to finish four-and-a-half lengths in front of Chubbys Caviar, to secure the trophy and £5,000 winning prize fund for Janssens.

“I think this shows he can now compete at a really high level, and beat more established names,” Desperado Dan’s trainer said.

“We want to aim him for the major competitions now, and we’re looking at entering him in the William Hill Grand Prix final later in the year.

“But he’ll be competing at Romford on Friday (tonight) first, and then the Peter Bussey Memorial and we’ll see how that goes.”

Both the Grand Prix and Memorial races were won by Wallis dogs in 2018.

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