Greyhound racing: Dedication Mark-ed by top trainer award

PUBLISHED: 11:53 09 February 2006 | UPDATED: 11:33 04 May 2010

Greyhound trainer Mark Wallis

Greyhound trainer Mark Wallis

GREYHOUND trainer Mark Wallis (left) has won the top prize in the sport in his first year. Based at Imperial Kennels, Undley Common at Lakenheath, Wallis was awarded with the Trainer of the Year 2005 trophy at a black-tie ceremony in London. Meanwhile,

GREYHOUND trainer Mark Wallis (left) has won the top prize in the sport in his first year.

Based at Imperial Kennels, Undley Common at Lakenheath, Wallis was awarded with the Trainer of the Year 2005 trophy at a black-tie ceremony in London.

Meanwhile, one of his staff received a prestigious surprise award at the event hosted by the British Greyhound Racing Board.

Wallis admits his grounding, working as assistant for many years at Imperial Kennels for former champion Linda Jones, and mother-in-law, helped form his own success. He said: "It's been a great year but without all the team at the kennels nothing would be possible. Everyone from our local suppliers to owners and all the staff have worked hard."

The Wallis team had 305 winners last year including scooping some of the top events in the sport including the East Anglian Derby, The Peterborough Puppy Derby and the Grand National at greyhound stadia up and down the country.

While the award for best trainer was known at the end of the year there was an extra special surprise on the night for Peter Vernon who won the BGRB Kennelhand of the Year award - he was nominated by Wallis. "I know that we couldn't have achieved the success the kennel has had without his services. Peter and rest of the staff are the real stars of any top kennel. Peter's dedication and attention to detail of his job is immense and his love for the greyhounds in our kennel is second to none."

The Kennelhand Awards was presented by Tanya Stevenson of Channel 4 racing and the Racing Post. She said: "It has been a tremendous thrill co-ordinating and co-sponsoring the Award. To me they are the hardest working sector of the sport - working very long hours for very little financial reward, purely for the love of the dogs.

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