History of the Coral Brighton Belle

The Coral Brighton Belle (515 metres), confined to the fairer sex, has been a traditional racing highlight at Coral Brighton & Hove Stadium for fifty years and the event has enjoyed Category One status since 2023.

Masslock Lady, one hundredth of a second outside Linacre’s world record of 28.99sec for Hove’s 500 metres during a glorious track career, triumphed for George Curtis in 1979 and she is widely regarded as one of the most talented bitches to ever win the Brighton Belle.

Sundridge Racing, runner-up to the record-breaking Glen Miner in the final of the Olympic at Hove earlier in the year, justified an even-money quote when scoring for Tony Dennis in 1982 – she had earlier led everywhere bar the line when pipped by Try Travelscene in the Ladbroke Golden Jacket (660 metres) at Harringay.

Westmead Move, trained by Nick Savva, justified her reputation as one of the outstanding bitches of the post-war era when landing the 1987 Brighton Belle and she cemented her superstar status when victorious in the Gold Collar (555 mettres) at Catford and Grand Prix (640 metres) at Walthamstow.

NICK SAVVA: He won the Brighton Belle on four occasions with Westmead Move, Westmead Chloe, Westmead Chick and Westmead Melanie.

Satharn Lady, described by trainer John Coleman as “one of the fastest greyhounds that I ever trained”, carved her name on the championship list of winners in 1991 and Roving Trumpet, trained by John Rouse, proved a popular local winner of the Brighton Belle the following year.

August ’91 whelp Wexford Minx, a 26.5 kilo brindled bitch by 1987 Irish Champion Stakes victor Manorville Major-Ballarue Suzy, enjoyed her first major open-race triumph when continuing the trend of top-class open-race stayers by landing the 1993 Brighton Belle (515 metres) at Hove.

“She was purchased by owner Eamon Furlong, via a link with local greyhound racing enthusiast Frank Phillips, from leading Irish breeder Breda Kennedy at her New Ross range in co. Wexford,” said trainer Derek Knight. “Wexford Minx hailed from a very good family and, in fact, she was a half-sister to future St Leger winner Ballarue Minx.”

Greyhound of the Year Westmead Chick collared the Maria Collins-trained Roving Bunnie in the run-in to take the plaudits in the 1994 renewal of the Brighton Belle and Nick Savva’s canine superstar also gained big-race wins in the Midland Flat, Oaks, Derby Invitation, Monmore Gold Cup and Wey Plastics Invitation.

In 2007 Jazz Hurrricane, runner-up to Lady Sky the previous year, showed a fine blend of speed and stamina to account for Belindas Floss by almost three lengths and that achievement supplemented a recent defeat of Cobra Striking in the final of the £2,000 Ladbrokees Circuit (475 metres) at Walthamstow,

The Belinda Green-trained Betsys Bullet, sent off at 11-1, served up one of the biggest shock results in the history of the Brighton Belle when beating a thoroughly representative line-up in 2023 that also featured Lively Lauren (second), Whats Up Eva (third), Newinn Touch (fourth), My Girl Mia (fifth) and No Rush (sixth).

BETSYS BULLET: The 11-1 winner for Belinda Green in the 2023 Brighton Belle final.


525 yards

1973 MISS DOWNPATRICK 11-10F G. Curtis Hove 28.72

1974 HOP IT KANSAS 3-1 J. Pickering White City 28.28

500 metres

1975 FINAL FLAG 9-4 G. Curtis Hove 29.80

1976 KINGS COMET 5-1 J. Smith Catford 29.56

1977 KILCANWAY ROSE 3-1 T. Johnston Wembley 29.67

1978 LOYAL KATIE 4-1 J. Honeysett Crayford 29.82

1979 MASSLOCK LADY 11-10F G. Curtis Hove 29.14

1980 SUNNY INTERVAL 6-1 P. Rees Wimbledon 29.56

515 metres

1981 CREEPY TULIP 11-4 P. Rees Wimbledon 30.35

1982 SUNDRIDGE RACING 1-1F T. Dennis Southend 30.10

1983 BLUE TOTAL 8-1 N. Gleeson Wimbledon 30.45

1984 RUSHWEE PECOS 5-2F G. Curtis Hove 30.35

1985 LISAS GIRL 15-8F P. Rees Wimbledon 30.16

1986 SOFT LIPS 6-1 G. Curtis Hove 30.37

1987 WESTMEAD MOVE 1-4F N. Savva Unattached 29.79

1988 COPPERTONE 3-1 G. Baggs Walthamstow 30.21

1989 GREENFIELD MADAM 4-11F P. Coughlan Crayford 30.22

1990 WESTMEAD CHLOE 7-1 N. Savva Unattached 29.79

1991 SATHARN LADY 7-4F J. Coleman Walthamstow 30.01

1992 ROVING TRUMPET 3-1 J. Rouse Hove 30.22

1993 WEXFORD MINX 6-1 D. Knight Hove 30.32

1994 WESTMEAD CHICK 4-7F N. Savva Unattached 29.86

1995 SYDNEY MISS 11-8F B. Masters Hove 30.55

1996 MOUNTAIN HOPE 6-1 R. Young Hove 30.22

1997 DROOPYS TRISHA 3-1 C. Duggan Walthamstow 30.38

1998 SHE CAN BOOGIE 3-1 B. McBride Harlow 30.43

1999 IM OKAY 1-3F B. Draper Sheffield 29.96

2000 DANIELLES MINX 14-1 D. Knight Hove 30.03

2001 SENAHEL RIDGE 3-1 O. McKenna Wimbledon 29.97

2002 DROOPYS CANDICE 3-1 B. Clemenson Hove 29.85

2003 CARN BREEZE 3-1 C. Lund Stainforth 29.62

2004 DROOPYS SAVANNA 11-4F B. Clemenson Hove 29.93

2005 SHELBOURNE NINA 5-4F B. Clemenson Hove 29.77

2006 LADY SKY 5-2 B. Clemenson Hove 29.81

2007 JAZZ HURRICANE 4-5F D. Knight Hove 30.33

JAZZ HURRICANE: The 2007 Brighton Belle champion and one of the most talented bitches of her generation.

2008 FARLOE MIRROR 9-2 C. Gardiner Hove 29.94

2009 PINE ISLE 5-4 C. Gardiner Hove 30.01

2010 PARADISE ALEXUS 4-1 B. Clemenson Hove 29.76

2011 WESTMEAD MELANIE 1-1F N. Savva Henlow 29.92

2012 JAYTEE MONROE 7-2 P. Young Romford 29.92

2013 BRIDGE RUTH 1-2F M. Wallis Yarmouth 29.54

2014 BUTTS MOTT 2-1 P. Cowdrill Monmore 29.93

2015 AIRFORCE DUCHESS 5-1 M. Wallis Yarmouth 29.91

2016 BANABANE 4-5F S. Cahill Hove 29.62

2017 AWAY SHELLY 5-4F M. Dartnall Towcester 29.85

2018 BALLYMAC MISCULA 2-1 K. Billingham Monmore 30.00

2019 GALLOPING MOON 6-4F K. Hutton Monmore 30.22

2020 DROOPYS AOIFE 13-8 E. Gaskin jnr Unattached 31.48

2021 LIGHTS OUT 9-4 K. Hutton Towcester 30.28

2022 WHATS UP EVA 2-1 R. Rees Hove 30.32

2023 BETSYS BULLET 11-1 B. Green Hove 30.29

Written by Patrick Kelly