Sunday’s National Greyhound Awards may have been virtual but there was nothing virtual about the success of Susie Sapphire at the annual showpiece.
It was predictable that daughter of Droopys Jet would be a winner on the night and few will be surprised that she was named the Future Star of the Year, the Bitch of the Year and ultimately, Supreme Greyhound of the Year.
To add to her success, her dam Jetstream Lynx was also named Brood Bitch of the Year, leaving Peter Comerford in the enviable position to trying to find room on his mantlepiece for the four trophies.
It was fitting that Owen McKenna, who expertly trained Susie Sapphire to Puppy Oaks, Oaks and Derby success was joined by his family on the zoom call following Susie Sapphire’s success in the Supreme Greyhound of the Year award.
Both Peter and Owen were clearly over the moon with the recognition their star received and few would say it wasn’t thoroughly deserved.
EXPLOSIVE BOY AND GOOD CODY RECOGNISED
The Kennedy family and Pat Guilfoyle also had a big night.
Explosive Boy, who was bred by the Kennedy family and trained expertly by Pat Guilfoyle was named Dog of the Year. Peter Sutcliffe’s charge was exceptional through the year winning both the Produce Stakes and Race of Champion while also going close in the Derby and Kirby Memorial.
Good Cody, who is now under the care of Pat Guilfoyle, was named Sprinter of the Year following his victory in the Irish Sprint Cup. Guilfoyle reported his charge in tremendous form but refused to speculate whether the brilliant son of Definate Opinion would attempt to defend his Irish Sprint Cup crown or go down the Derby route. Sadly, John Kennedy was equally hesitant to make the call.
DANA ON POINT
Dana Point was named Stayer of the Year and Sean Mullins confirmed their plan to bring the brilliant daughter of Sparta Maestro after her seasonal rest.
The wonderful stayer has yet to suffer defeat over a trip in excess of 750yds and all going to plan she will attempt to defend her Winter racing Festival and Shelbourne Open Marathon titles.
SYDNEY THE STUD KING
Stud Dog of the Year was unsurprisingly Droopys Sydney.
The most sought-after stud dog in the land, he had an incredible year and looks likely to have another stellar 2022.
DINNY A HALL OF FAMER
Dinny Lennon was a thoroughly deserved inductee in the Hall of Fame and the Threecastles man was joined by five of his granddaughters for his interview.
In truth, Dinny was the coolest man on the night but I’m sure he did some celebrating when the computer was closed down.
GPA THE WELFARE WINNERS
Greyhound Pets of America were given recognition for their wonderful work with retired greyhounds. They have been rehoming form Irish trained dogs across the US and parts of Canada and Steve Schiferl and John Parker joined us for a chat. Both men were delighted with the award and gave special mention to the hundreds of individuals that make their organization a success.
NOREEN MCMANUS A DESERVING SPECIAL MERIT WINNER
Of course, the Special Merit award went to Noreen McManus.
Noel Earley spoke on her behalf and, once again, confirmed Noreen’s commitment to the sport and her backing of the Con & Annie Kirby Memorial, which is run in honour of her parents.
The Canine Award Winners
Brood Bitch of the Year – Jetstream Lynx
Stud Dog of the Year – Droopys Sydney
Future Star – Susie Sapphire
Sprinter of the Year – Good Cody
Stayer of the Year – Dana Point
Bitch of the Year – Susie Sapphire
Dog of the Year – Explosive Boy
Special Merit – Noreen McManus
Welfare Award – GPA (Greyhound Pets of America)
Hall of Fame – Denis “Dinny” Lennon
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