It was another busy month in the sport around Victoria. On 12 September, Horsham Greyhound Racing Club’s new track was officially opened by the Mayor of Horsham Rural City Council after a redevelopment that used mainly local contractors and suppliers.
It was a very busy August for GRV and the sport, both on and off the track. One of the month’s highlights was the Victorian Greyhound Awards, held on 18 August at the Sandown Greyhound Racing Club. I congratulate all the winners and recipients on their achievements, particularly our new Hall of Fame inductees Jan Wilson, Barry Smith and El Grand Senor.
There perhaps has never been a more important time for Victoria’s greyhound racing participants to try to shape their own destiny, and I encourage all participants and our industry’s stakeholders – if you haven’t already – to please read and respond to the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport & Resources’ (DEDJTR) draft Code of Practice for the Keeping of Racing Greyhounds.
As we enter the new financial year, it is timely to reflect on the transformation of Greyhound Racing Victoria. GRV has worked hard to transform itself to become fit-for-purpose as both a regulator and promoter of the sport. Clear strategic priorities have been formulated to help build a thriving and sustainable future.
It has been another busy month for GRV as we continue to work on developing a strong and sustainable long term future for the sport. As I mentioned last month, the capital works program is now well underway to ensure that Victoria’s greyhound racing clubs have the infrastructure they need to improve track safety, support industry development through new training centres and deliver a great experience for racing audiences and community events. GRV is also working to strengthen the clubs in the many roles they play in their communities by funding people to provide dedicated support for the clubs and also developing a collective strategic plan and new marketing initiatives.
A new year begins and whilst GRV has completed much of the development work and significant progress has been made in implementing aspects of the major reform work, there remains much to do in 2017. There are some very significant and large scale tasks ahead that GRV aims to complete this year to help secure the sport’s long term future. Among them is to conclude our response to the reviews undertaken by Sal Perna, the Racing Integrity Commissioner and Dr Charles Milne, Victoria’s Chief Veterinarian.
As we enter 2017, I think it’s worth reflecting on what’s been achieved over the past year by Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) and the sport. GRV has been substantially reformed in line with the recommendations by the Racing Integrity Commissioner and the Chief Veterinarian. Local Rules of Racing have been updated and revised, a new registration framework now better regulates participants and animal welfare rules have been strengthened. More dogs are being re-homed and new breeding controls have been introduced while racing opportunities have been improved for greyhounds of all ages and opportunities.