Swift Silly Makes It A Night To Remember For Hale Family


29 December 2023

Swift Silly justified favouritism to win the £20,000 Premier Greyhound Racing All England Cup Grand Final at a busy Newcastle Stadium on Thursday evening. 

The two-year-old brindle bitch never saw a rival to land part-time trainer Raymond Hale his first Category One prize – the highest grade of UK greyhound racing – following a lifetime of involvement in racing. 

A binman by trade, Raymond operates his kennels with the support of son Michael, partner Lisa plus owners Michael Thompson and John Burton. 

The success has propelled the Hale kennel onto greyhound racing’s national stage with Swift Silly’s record now standing at 11 wins from 17 runs. Arena Racing Company Classic champion Jonny Whiskers finished second while Jill Sutherst’s Witton Venus was third. 

Antigua Eclipse, Pape Di Oro and Bogger Rambo filled the minor placings. 

Reacting to the win, Raymond said: “It’s unbelievable – I’ve never experienced anything like this in my life. 

“Greyhound racing is a real team effort, and this result is a huge reward for the family and all their hard work over the years. 

“My son (Michael) grew up around greyhounds, we used to carry him around the tracks as a baby and I know this win means so much to him. Eight years ago, I would’ve never predicted we’d even have runners at Newcastle, let alone winners. 

“Now we’re Category One champions!”

Swift Silly wasn’t the only reason the Hale family journeyed home with their tails up. 

Earlier on the card, Swift Josh landed the Arena Racing Company Puppy Final with a two-and-one-quarter length success over Tom Heilbron’s Innfield Rex.

There were triumphs also for Highview Sean, Wraysbury Diva and Lightfoot Clark who took the other Category Three sprint, standard and stayers competitions sponsored by Arena Racing Company respectively. 

Greyhound racing returns to Newcastle Stadium this afternoon with 12-race card starting at 2.04pm. The final fixture of 2023 takes place on Saturday afternoon with racing starting at 2.04pm.

A full list of results from Premier Greyhound Racing All England Cup Grand Final night can be viewed below:

Arena Racing Company Puppy – Skywalker Pele

Arena Racing Company Sprint – Zari Bon Bon

Arena Racing Company Puppy Final – Swift Josh

Arena Racing Company Winter Dash Final – Highview Sean

Arena Racing Company Standard Final – Wraysbury Diva

Arena Racing Company Standard – Droopys Biggy

Arena Racing Company Stayers’ Final – Lightfoot Clark

Arena Racing Company Standard – Coppice Rocket

Arena Racing Company Maiden Stayers’ – Ballymac Neems

Premier Greyhound Racing All England Cup Final – Swift Silly

Arena Racing Company Stayers - Sweet Daffodil

Arena Racing Company Maiden - Bramble Nickeen

Newcastle Greyhound Stadium

Racecourse logo

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