Emotional Time, who won 10 of 26 races across various grades at Monmore in 2022, has been named the GBGB’s Graded Greyhound of the Year.
The two-year-old bitch – running at the track this evening – is racing in memory of well-respected trainer Darren ‘Wal’ Hampson, and Griffiths says the gong is a fitting tribute to an old friend.
“The dog has a special meaning anyway with the connection to the family,” said Griffiths.
“Darren was a trainer at Belle Vue when I was there, and when he died, his family wanted to carry on with something he loved, greyhound racing.
“They picked this puppy up who hadn’t had a race at all, so we didn’t know what to expect, but she’s ended up going through the grades.
“She’s owned by Darren’s brother, Mark and is running an A1 tonight. She’s had two A1s so far and just got beaten in both, so she’s knocking on the door.
“A1 might just be a touch tough for her at the minute, but she’s gone all the way from A7 to there, so it’s brilliant.
“We were all going to the awards night anyway, and this came about after which was great. We were going to have a night out, and now we get to pick up a trophy.
“It’s a fitting way to honour Darren. We were good friends at Belle Vue, so when his family asked me to have the dog for them, it was an honour and a pleasure. Looking back, he’d be made up with this.”
Emotional Time is running in Race Six this evening at Monmore, while Griffiths also has promising puppy Becky the Boo, Rahyvira Quinn, Aussie McCoy, Agilis Faith and Great Name That on tonight’s card.
On how things are progressing at the track, Griffiths added: “Last year was my first at Monmore and we’re doing well, having a fair number of winners with a small kennel of dogs.
“We do it because it’s something I’ve done forever now. Only having 20 dogs, it’s difficult to make any money out of it, really.
“It’s something you do as a passion. Once it’s in you, it’s very difficult to do anything else.
“It gets hold of you and I love it as much today as I did on day one.”