Last week, we featured Sarah Kinsella, trainer and greyhound racing writer for the Irish Daily Star. This week, we continue our Blog Spotlight on Sarah Kinsella, delving further into her experiences in the Irish greyhound racing industry.
Thinking back on previous greyhound races, Sarah said that her favorite memories include Brewers Tune and Accordello, who was mentioned in the last blog as not much of a looker but fast. Accordello won impressive races and came close to winning one of the biggest races.
“Accordello got beaten on the line in the Dundalk International, the richest race in the world. I was gutted; it looked like he had won.”
Even though Accordello didn’t win the Dundalk International, it is still one of Sarah’s favorites because it shows how impressive of a racer Accordello is. All of his big wins, along with Brewers Tune, make the top of her list.
“[Accordello] also made it to the final of the Cesarewitch in Mullingar, which was won by a dog called Definite Opinion who is the sire of the Irish Derby winner, Good News.”
The Irish Derby, ran on September 23rd, was lining up to be quite the race this year. A favorite greyhound of Sarah’s, Clares Rocket, was a running favorite in the Irish Derby, but had to drop out of the running. As one of the fastest greyhounds Sarah had ever seen, his withdrawal from the derby shook things up to make the Derby final a very exciting race.
“The Derby final itself was a huge success. The place was packed and the roars were so loud from the stand when Good News won the Derby. I have never heard anything like it in all my years going to the Derby.”
Sarah’s love for greyhound racing doesn’t stop with the sport itself. Sarah took in two of her racers, Accordello and Brewers Way, as pets once they retired. With greyhounds being such loving animals, that are often given the nicknames of ‘45 mph couch potatoes,’ they make great pets.
“I would recommend anyone to adopt a retired greyhound. They are fantastic dogs and easy to keep. They love attention and interaction.”
Though Sarah loves the greyhound racing industry, it has gotten more tough over the years as Sarah mentioned that greyhound racing has become much more competitive, especially in the graded greyhound races. Sarah’s frustrations extend to the times that greyhounds have been caught with substances in their systems.
“It’s very sad to think that not everyone is honest… It makes you think twice about training and they ruin the game for everyone else and attract bad publicity.”
While this is something that happens from time to time, Sarah also discusses how much the greyhound racing industry has improved in testing the dogs frequently and with better ways to determine whether substances are present.
“Our industry is super. The dogs receive the best care, love, and attention. Over the last few years, the standard of racing on Saturday night in Shelbourne Park has been sublime. The best in the country all head to Shelbourne Park.”
As someone who has been working with greyhounds since she was a kid, we asked Sarah what she recommends for those who are interested in getting into the greyhound racing industry. Sarah recommends getting involved with the heart of greyhound racing: the kennels and tracks. Helping out with the dogs at the kennels and asking the trainer questions will help expand your greyhound racing knowledge. At the track, taking notes of pups you like and certain things you notice about them will help you to improve your skills at picking out greyhounds.
“You will soon develop a love. The work with greyhounds can be very therapeutic, especially when the dog you have been walking and looking after starts winning, it’s some buzz and you will be sucked in. When I was being bullied in school, I always remember racing home to change my clothes and go outside to the kennels to help my parents. It was a great escape for me and greyhound racing has helped me through many bad times.”
Sounds like our kind of therapy!
We would like to thank Sarah Kinsella for sharing her story with us and her experience in the greyhound racing industry. You can follow her on Twitter at @SarahKinsella3. One of our main goals is to promote the greyhound industry. Do you work in the greyhound racing industry or know someone who does? Would you be interested in being featured in our blog or podcast? Contact us at email@example.com.