Albion Park will be the first Australian greyhound track to race with the New Zealand style “finish on” lure after Greyhounds Queensland has today announced it will introduce the new system effective 5th January 2009.
Brisbane Greyhound Racing Club and Greyhounds Queensland are delighted to be the first in Australia to introduce the “finish on” lure after a trial of the system, which has been running at Albion Park since September, was favourably received by all concerned and results were deemed successful.
Final phase testing involving full field trials will be run at Albion Park on December 15th.
Brisbane Club General Manager, Luke Gatehouse said “The introduction of the finish-on lure has been extremely well received by the industry, and the extension of this lure into race meetings will be a positive”.
Greyhounds Queensland Chairman of Stewards, Danny Ryan said Stewards have closely monitored the trials and fully support the introduction of the finish-on lure to race meetings.
New South Wales has so far been the only other state to officially trial the finish-on lure system and although early reports were promising, there has been no word regarding its introduction to regular racing.
Recent high profile cases of errant chasing such as exposed in the 2008 Group 1 Melbourne Cup by Surgeon have only strengthened calls for the lure system to be introduced in all states.
The finish-on lure system increases a greyhounds capacity to chase to its fullest by providing a reward system whereby the greyhound is allowed to catch the lure after the race. The current catching pen system involves whisking the lure away and making the dogs run full throttle in to often dangerous containment areas with no reward for their efforts.
In Victoria the GRV have come under increasing pressure to implement the finish-on system as the recent ban on Anabolic Steroids and a GRV Board decision to prohibit the use of dead carcasses during “arm” trials has been blamed for an increase in the number of greyhounds failing to chase properly and has left trainers at odds for an adequate solution to keep a greyhound “keen” and enthusiastic about racing.
Hopefully this decision from Queensland will give other states in Australia the courage to fully test and introduce the finish-on lure at their own tracks.