As you are aware, the Minister for Racing, Martin Pakula, has appointed Peita Duncan as Chair of Greyhound Racing Victoria and re-appointed Emmett Dunne to the GRV Board and I strongly welcome both appointments. I have worked closely with Peita for over four years now and her comprehensive experience in both greyhound racing and board and executive management roles combined with her passionate commitment to our sport will make her a great Chair. I also congratulate Emmett on his reappointment to the GRV Board where his expertise in key areas such as integrity has been invaluable. And following Greg Miller’s announcement of his retirement as Sandown Park’s CEO, I’d like to thank him on behalf of GRV for his great work in the role since 2010. He led and played a key role in a range of initiatives that drove both the growth of Sandown and of the sport in general, including the Speed Star series, the Launching Pad sweepstakes, National Greyhound Draft and Greyhound Clubs Australia. And of course, continuing to develop the TAB Melbourne Cup as the sport’s premiere event and Sandown as one of the world’s leading greyhound racing clubs. It has been a great pleasure to work with Greg and the team he has built up at Sandown and I wish him all the best for the future.
I am pleased to announce that GRV has partnered with other greyhound racing jurisdictions to present a new one-hour greyhound racing television program, called the Thrill Of The Chase. It’s a truly national approach to in depth coverage of the sport that focuses on the greyhounds as the star athletes that they are. The five-part series is hosted by SEN’s Jack Heverin alongside Liz Whelan and James Van de Maat and with GRV’s own Molly Haines doing a regular segment on Australia’s best former champion greyhounds. It will run from 10 – 11 am each Sunday starting 3 November through to 1 December 2019 on 7 Mate and I encourage everyone to watch this inside view of the world of Australian greyhound racing.
In other news, GRV’s 2018-19 Annual Report was tabled in Parliament on 17 October and is available online at grv.org.au/about-us/grv-annual-reports and you can read more about in this edition of the Monthly. It provides a comprehensive overview of what was a very good year for the sport, and I am really pleased to be able to release such positive integrity and welfare outcomes for the year. It is great that our greyhounds that can be rehomed are being rehomed.
GRV has now completed delivery of a suite of information and support initiatives to help participants prepare for the introduction of the Code of Practice on 1 January 2020. The latest initiative participants should be aware of is a guide to using the online Greyhound Record. This gives each Greyhound an eHealth record on FastTrack from birth to retirement and you can find out more about this at greyhoundcare.grv.org.au/code-of-practice which includes videos on how a participant can use the Greyhound Record. I’d like to thank all Victoria’s greyhound racing clubs for their work here which included hosting Code information sessions attended by around 550 participants, providing support for participants in completing their EHMP plans and declarations and in generally spreading the word and providing valuable feedback on Code implementation issues.
Looking ahead on the track, it will be another busy November with the Hume Cup, Silver Bullet, Topgun and Shootout and of course the Melbourne Cup carnival. You will also notice that GRV will be stepping up promotion of such major events and the sport itself as part of our sharpened commercial focus. During 2019-20, GRV will have a renewed commitment to growing our customer base to boost revenue. This will be reinvested in the sport and increase returns to participants so you can expect to see some new marketing initiatives rolled out over the coming year to get more people involved in our code.