It’s been a while since an owner trained greyhound (syndicates excluded), or indeed a bitch, has claimed the Irish Greyhound Derby.

In fact, it’s been nearly 21 years. Gerald reminds us of that fact with his racing highlight - Spring Time’s Derby win in 1999.

Owned and trained by Gerald Watson, the 7 to 4 favourite claimed the £60,000 prizefund in Shelbourne Park in the same year she also won the English Oaks.

Spring Time, winner of the 1999 Irish Greyhound Derby Final

Presentation from the Final of the 1999 Irish Greyhound Derby. Thanks to Margaret Walsh and the Irish Greyhound Review for sharing the picture.
Picture: Imelda Grauer

As Gerald says “She was a freak of nature and like most good ones just done everything right.”

On her retirement from racing, she returned to her breeder Charlie Magill. Charlie passed away about a year ago and Gerald remembers him as a very private man and a gentle giant. Spring Time was buried at Charlie’s home when she passed away.

Don’t forget to share your memories with us on social media or email If you have a photo or video to accompany it, we’d love to see that too.