Thursday, 25 September 2014

Greyhound Box Draw For Sandown Park – Thursday, 25 September 2014

Race No. 1Tab Early Quaddie7:07 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $7,150 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.


1TOMMY EL [5]56144NBTG Whitford (Yarram)
2JINGELLIC (NSW)[5]52353FSTDM Fox (Laverton)
3CREATIVE KARISMA [5]411129.98(4)K Podmore (Wagga Wagga)
4JUBILEA BALE (NSW)[5]6531529.57(4)J Hunt (Lara)
5SCANEZ CEE [5]5112230.07(4)B Divirgilio (Langwarrin)
6RAPID INCLINE [5]1372430.03(5)R Tartaglia (Newcomb)
7WAR ROOM [5]36652FSHM Carter (Violet Town)
8POLLY BALE (NSW)[5]7412130.02(1)A Dailly (Anakie)
9DYNA FANCY (NSW)[5]Res.7433130.03(8)A Dailly (Anakie)
10SURF JESTER (QLD)[5]Res.5887729.58(5)J Gill (Darriman)
Race No. 2Nathan Sturgess Final7:25 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Final event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $10,285 Prizemoney.
1st: $7,200 2nd: $2,060 3rd: $1,025.


1DR. RAHOUAL [5]54281NBTJ Mcmahon (Darriman)
2LONESOME KNIGHT [5]68652FSTDJ Westerlo (Clyde)
3PENANCE ALLEN (NSW)[5]7656134.35(6)J Hunt (Lara)
4DR. DES [5]42171FSTDW Mcmahon (Darriman)
5DYNA TREASON (NSW)[5]46552NBTJ Hunt (Lara)
6EXPLOSIVE ANGEL [5]62132FSTDM Brown (Loch)
7MOOT POINT (NSW)[5]132F1FSTDM Carter (Violet Town)
8ROCKIN’ JOSIE [5]5875134.26(8)V Borg (Hoppers Crossing)
9BERRY BLITZ [5]Res.5253234.98(8)A Langton (Anakie)
10DAINTREE PUZZLE [5]Res.42232NBTG Joske (Jeeralang Junction)
Race No. 3The “superdogs” Are Coming!7:44 PM (VIC time)
Mixed 4/5 event over 715 metres at Sandown park Of $8,745 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,120 2nd: $1,750 3rd: $875.


1ALLEN WAKE (NSW)[5]1443642.44(3)A Dailly (Anakie)
2FLYING TWIST [5]15423NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
3DEWANA BABE [4]1335142.00(7)M Dewan (Carrum Downs)
4BIG KAT [4]3588442.13(3)C Schlensog (Anakie)
5LOVE AFFAIR (NSW)[5]14314NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
6STARC (NSW)[4]2161242.10(4)A Dailly (Anakie)
7BLINKER’S ON [5]17123NBTB Ennis (Lara)
8KIM KEEPING (NSW)[5]5124742.31(2)J Cottrell (Langwarrin)
Race No. 4Tab Melb. Cup 21/11 – Grv Vic Bred Final (gobis)8:08 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Final event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $12,685 Prizemoney.
1st: $7,200 2nd: $2,060 3rd: $1,025 GOBIS: $2,400.


1REBELATION [5]4266334.51(1)M Mallia-magri (Avalon)
2MEPUNGA FEARON [5]25432NBTJ Britton (Anakie)
3ROY GALO [5]26563NBTS Ralph (Tooradin)
4RINASH [5]1143234.68(3)G Laidlay (Devon Meadows)
5SIGN OF SNOW [5]2833234.51(3)A Langton (Anakie)
6COULTA ROCK [4]1343134.22(8)D Curtain (Longwarry)
7SONIC PIRATE [4]1726134.49(8)P Reinders (Gruyere)
8DEADLY BOY [4]1641134.33(8)S Mckenna (Napoleons)
9MORNINGSIDE [5]Res.12273NBTK Bravo (Lovely Banks)
10HESSION BOOTS [5]Res.28634NBTR Clark (Toolleen)
Race No. 5Tab Melbourne Cup Prelude 18:28 PM (VIC time)
Special Event event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $8,940 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,260 2nd: $1,790 3rd: $890.


1TEXAS TITAN (SA)[4]3431329.57(7)J Britton (Anakie)
2DYNA OSTRANDER (NSW)[3]1152529.56(2)J Hunt (Lara)
3WE ARE GEELONG [4]7112129.62(2)M Karamatic (Lara)
4MUSQUIN BALE (NSW)[4]8414829.30(2)A Dailly (Anakie)
5BANJO BOY [2]1134229.34(8)K Virtue (Tooradin)
6FARMOR LAS VEGAS (QLD)[4]2115429.61(4)R Britton (Lara)
7BLURRED LINES [3]7117129.68(8)K Bravo (Lovely Banks)
8TIGGERLONG AMIGO (NSW)[4]4345129.52(4)D Mcdonald (Devon Meadows)
9PAPPA GALLO [5]Res.8656429.45(5)M Cortese (Hampton Park)
Race No. 6Tab Melbourne Cup Prelude 28:52 PM (VIC time)
Special Event event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $8,940 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,260 2nd: $1,790 3rd: $890.


1WIND WHISTLER [4]2121229.49(8)A Langton (Anakie)
2OLLIE BALE (NSW)[4]2515329.32(4)A Dailly (Anakie)
3DREAM IT [4]3217129.53(5)B Ennis (Lara)
4DYNA NICO (NSW)[3]4313129.62(1)A Dailly (Anakie)
5NATIONAL TIME (NSW)[4]4111129.43(3)D Brown (Lara)
6TAKE CHARGE [3]2221129.52(2)S Mckenna (Napoleons)
7BUCKLE UP MASON (TAS)[2]2331229.26(5)J Hunt (Lara)
8CAMPASPE WILL [5]3116429.44(8)N Walls (Melton)
9PAPPA GALLO [5]Res.8656429.45(5)M Cortese (Hampton Park)
Race No. 7Tab Melbourne Cup Prelude 39:11 PM (VIC time)
Special Event event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $8,940 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,260 2nd: $1,790 3rd: $890.


1MEPUNGA ARMAGH [3]3437229.37(6)J Britton (Anakie)
2GIMME FUEL [2]2186129.44(1)K Bravo (Lovely Banks)
3HIGHBURY (NSW)[4]2353429.46(1)R Britton (Lara)
4WARRIOR KING (NSW)[4]4431229.25(1)B Ennis (Lara)
5MYSTIC TWIST [4]6615129.63(3)M Cauchi (St Leonards)
6DYNA BETH (NSW)[4]6267729.55(3)A Dailly (Anakie)
7DELLO BALE (NSW)[4]2343129.41(1)J Hunt (Lara)
8LAMIA BALE (NSW)[3]5161129.54(2)S Collins (Lara)
9PAPPA GALLO [5]Res.8656429.45(5)M Cortese (Hampton Park)
Race No. 8Tab Melbourne Cup Prelude 49:35 PM (VIC time)
Special Event event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $8,940 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,260 2nd: $1,790 3rd: $890.


1HEKATE BELLE [5]15614NBTK Bravo (Lovely Banks)
2BAZZA’S GIFT [2]1854729.54(1)N Bell (Point Lonsdale)
3HUMPHREY BALE (NSW)[5]4886429.48(1)A Dailly (Anakie)
4OAKVALE DESTINY (SA)[3]5341129.67(7)J Britton (Anakie)
5MARCUS JOE [1]2215329.24(4)B Moloney (Marcus Hill)
6LADY GOLDENPAW [4]6311829.66(8)R Britton (Lara)
7SAMUS ALLEN (NSW)[5]52452NBTJ Hunt (Lara)
8MY BRO FABIO (NSW)[3]1211129.38(2)B Ennis (Lara)
9PAPPA GALLO [5]Res.8656429.45(5)M Cortese (Hampton Park)
Race No. 9Macro Meats9:55 PM (VIC time)
Free For All event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $10,285 Prizemoney.
1st: $7,200 2nd: $2,060 3rd: $1,025.


1RUMERO REASON (NSW)[4]3427434.33(1)A Dailly (Anakie)
2DYNA ORION (NSW)[4]3144334.65(5)A Dailly (Anakie)
3HEIDI GO SEEK [2]3552334.25(2)A Langton (Anakie)
4RALPHY CINEL (NSW)[4]2521234.38(6)J Borg (Maryborough)
6SUPERSONIC HAWK (NSW)[4]2512534.41(2)J Britton (Anakie)
7TICK BALE (NSW)[3]5775334.32(3)J Hunt (Lara)
8ARISING [3]3174134.01(3)D Knocker (Langwarrin)
Race No. 10Berwick Mazda10:12 PM (VIC time)
Mixed 3/4 event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $8,940 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,260 2nd: $1,790 3rd: $890.


1SPEED SERIES (NSW)[3]2652629.50(8)G Campbell (Peechelba)
2PRINCE TO EXCEL (NSW)[4]7121129.91(2)G Jose (Catani)
3GORHAM BALE (NSW)[4]2123229.42(5)S Collins (Lara)
4BAHAMA BAY [4]3154829.70(1)A Britton (Lara)
6DR. KLAAS [4]111429.62(5)W Mcmahon (Darriman)
7FABIO (QLD)[4]1111229.63(3)K Greenough (Pearcedale)
8BAYMAN BALE (NSW)[4]1611630.06(2)J Hunt (Lara)
Race No. 11Tab Rewards10:32 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $8,225 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,750 2nd: $1,645 3rd: $830.


1UNIX BALE (NSW)[5]81276NBTS Collins (Lara)
2MORNINGSIDE [5]12273NBTK Bravo (Lovely Banks)
3BUNGA BUNGA [5]42116NBTJ Greenough (Pearcedale)
4TWEAK [5]12126NBTT O’donovan (Devon Meadows)
5KAYO MARCIARNO [5]2535634.59(3)G Neocleous (Yinnar South)
6VELOCEMENTE [5]86334NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
7DYNA GELDOF (NSW)[5]24238NBTS Collins (Lara)
8HE ISN’T REALLY [5]3736434.44(6)C Schlensog (Anakie)
9MISS SOCIETY [5]Res.7286734.47(7)J Imlach (Pearcedale)
10ATLAS GENIUS (SA)[5]Res.1231634.55(5)B Divirgilio (Langwarrin)

Progress Comes Only After Hard Decisions

It’s always hard to know what GRNSW is doing (Brent’s Blog has not been seen for the last three months, for example) but its approach to the four NSW Northern Rivers clubs has always been puzzling.

Of those, Tweed Heads is Non-Tab and will remain so because its Saturday afternoon meetings are in no-man’s land due to Tabcorp’s preferences for the gallops. However, although this club is also by far the most successful Non-Tab operation in the country, it has had its dates cut as part of what we assume to be an economy drive by GRNSW. We don’t know what the savings are but they could not be great.

It is also a mystery because that happened at a time when Queensland lacked a one-turn track following the closure of the Gold Coast. A hole was waiting to be filled. Even now, its replacement at Logan is likely to be a good two years in the making (regardless of what the publicity says). That was an opportunity to better promote Tweed Heads but it was not to be. Opportunity lost!

Elsewhere, the grass circuit at Casino celebrates its Cup meeting tonight. All the usual suspects will be going around, unlike at Tweed Heads’ lucrative Galaxy meeting where numerous dogs come from interstate to compete. But, in this day and age, Casino’s tight, no-straight track does not measure up to modern standards and, in any event, it is much too close to the nearby Lismore club to justify them both existing. If money is tight, why were their efforts not combined?

Lismore, too, needs improvements because of its bend starts but that could readily have been organised at the time of the rationalisation. It is the business, population, educational, cultural and administrative centre of the region. Casino has lots of cattle but they don’t bet much.

The relative performances of these two clubs should also be considered in the light of the fact that Casino has long enjoyed a preferred time slot – usually Friday twilight – while Lismore has been in the deadly Tuesday night position and Grafton has been jumping around all over the place, generally filling gaps here and there.

Further south, Grafton is battling along with half-money racing although it offers by far the best layout available in the area (particularly its 407m trip) and is nicely separated from the other three. In all the circumstances, some rationalisation is called for and Grafton is long overdue for promotion.

It would be no different in principle to what has already happened at Orange-Bathurst – with modest success (apart from building a horrible 450m start at Bathurst).


Following his good win the week before it looked like Starc was disappointing in running second to Ruff Cut Diamond at Sandown on Thursday. Not so. He actually improved by nearly three lengths but had no hope with the winner. And the dog is not yet two years old and smallish for a male at barely 30 kg.

It was no wonder. Ruff Cut Diamond ran the fastest 715m seen in a long while – 41.52 – easily bettering anything ever done by Xylia Allen or Sweet It Is. Miata’s track record is 41.17. Ruff Cut Diamond led all the way but actually ran away from Starc in the home straight.

Both the newcomers were having only their second start over the long trip and both were sired by Bekim Bale, as were two others in the field, including the fourth placegetter, Love Affair, and Allen Wake. Dare I suggest they all could do with a break of at least a couple of weeks now.

Critically, Bekim Bale might be launching a return to glory in the staying ranks. Can it be true?

(See also other Bekim Bale comments in our 15 September article re NSW stayer Space Age etc).


At Sandown in Race 8 stewards deemed the run of Tonk (6) as “unsatisfactory” and demanded a trial before accepting future nominations. I have to feel for the connections, even though the decision is not too dramatic. Here are some excerpts from the stewards report.

“Billy Bowlegs and Tonk collided soon after the start checking Billy Bowlegs”. “Tonk checked off Stunning Ashberg on the third turn”. “Tonk and Dyna Geldof collided in the home straight”.

Observations show that Tonk, a dedicated railer and chancy beginner, came out moderately from the middle box, got barrelled on the awful 595m bend start, got to the rail around the back, and pressed on strongly to pass a couple of runners on the way to the post – still chasing hard all the way into the pen. What was the point in being nasty to it?

A more productive recommendation from the stewards would be to put the club and GRV on trial for creating such a lousy start to a race. Ditto for the 600m start at The Meadows.

By comparison, the talented Dyna Perseus (8) (about which I wrote nice things many weeks ago when it was in sparkling form around the provincials) was in Race 7 just earlier, well backed just behind the two favourites. It came out poorly and ran last all the way, not really interested. Its previous form had been up and down. Stewards said not a word. How can you work them out?

(Note: The writer had no financial interest in either of these dogs).

No Value, No Bet

The bloke who claimed that nobody ever reads this column might have been partly right. (Maybe nobody reads it except him?). Here’s what I wrote a week ago about the Chairman’s Cup: “Based on its history, Xylia Allen will not be able to repeat its heat time with the final only seven short days away. Whether it can still win is the hard question. Odds-on, look on!”

Well, very few of you took any notice. In the final, Xylia Allen started at $1.80, ran the same style of race it did in the heat, and ran second in 42.11, which was five lengths slower than in its heat and a similar amount behind this week’s winner. There was nothing unusual about this. Its petrol tank was not refilled. The bitch has done this repeatedly when forced to back up within seven days of an earlier distance race. It simply cannot manage the two. Sweet It Is also ran as it normally does, messing around early and finishing on late in its normal time.

Zipping Maggie recorded its fifth win in a row, running a spritely 41.78 on the pace all the way and leading from the judge the first time around. It never looked like losing while the other two never looked like winning. Noteworthy is that throughout its career it has moved up steadily through the distances, from 500 to 600 to 660 and then to the 700-plus category, always improving as it went on. The Wenty victory was certainly its best.

I had made it 3/1 each of the three of them, give or take a bit, which was pretty right in the circumstances. Odds-on for Xylia Allen never made any sense.

I am now demanding that my tipping license be returned immediately.


Elsewhere, against moderate opposition at Dapto, Dusty Moonshine returned to its former glory when it streeted the field in 43.16, busting Forty Twenty’s five year old track record. It was coming off two mysterious failures at Wenty when it did not look like a fit enough dog. Perhaps they have got it right now? Its next run might tell more.

Just prior to the Chairman’s Cup, another provincial record breaker, Space Star, trounced a 5th grade field at Wenty in a smart 41.97. Not a flash beginner, it will be interesting to see how it progresses with more experience and in better class. The interesting thing about Space Star and Dusty Moonshine is they both race like stayers. Not many do that.

The Space Age performances further emphasise a trend I noted earlier (see August 29 article) as its sire is the dynamic Bekim Bale. That connection was underscored last Thursday at Sandown where five of the eight entries (two were later scratched) in a 5th Grade 715m event were sired by the same Bekim Bale, all with different mums. No world beaters amongst them but one of them bowled home to victory (Starc) in nice time and another ran third. Similarly on Saturday at The Meadows, Bekim Bale provided two of the eight runners over 725m, including the winner Shot To Bits. In recent times, it’s hard to recall a more prominent sire of distance dogs than this one, perhaps excepting Bombastic Shiraz.

It’s interesting to note that some thoroughbred buffs have pointed out that sires with a short racing career do much better at stud than those with lots of races under their belt. Bekim Bale’s racing career was cut short quite early through injury, but not before recording a track record over Sandown 515m. Likewise for Brett Lee and others.

Shot To Bits also adds to the mysteries. A noted hard finisher, the 725m handicap at The Meadows on Saturday was its first attempt at the long distance following top middle distance form, including a track record at Bendigo 660m. It won nicely but in very slow time. Corrected for the handicap (which GRV formguides fail to show) it ran the equivalent of 43.31which is one of the three worst times recorded this year. That’s surprising, notwithstanding its normal slow start. More information needed.

Still at The Meadows, last Saturday’s meeting may have been a sign of the times. It had a slowly run handicap over the long trip, a Maiden Final over 600m, which generally indicates only that the dogs are not much good at shorter trips, and Novice dogs scattered through the program – five actually raced and four more were listed as reserves. There was a time when Novices could not dream of getting a run at major city meetings.

More signs. Albion Park’s Sunday meeting contained nothing but 331m races. Usually it has a mix of distances. This is a reflection of the quality of dogs on offer in that state and often elsewhere. Indeed, the first law of racing now is that nominations will always gravitate to the shortest trip on offer. Unfortunately, they are also the least predictable. Inquiries reveal that these policies are there to keep trainers happy, but punters will have a different view (meaning punters, not gamblers).

However, please don’t tell me these races pull in good money, therefore they are worthwhile. Observation at the TAB over many years tells me that the majority of mug gamblers have no idea what the upcoming race distance is. They are often disappointed when it finishes so quickly, which is also why serious punters don’t like them.


All this to and fro about the quality of the staying ranks, or individual dogs, amounts more to a stab in the dark than anything else. It brings to mind ongoing studies into thoroughbred breeding where scientists have been trying to identify which genes produce sprinters and which stayers – and some claiming success.

But should the vets and the scientists be doing more to delve into greyhound genetics? The apparent shortage of genuine stayers is not helpful to the breed or to the way we put races together. I have already mentioned that programming heat and final events over successive weeks poses significant doubts (see above). Equally, there are both economic and welfare factors involved in that overstressing a dog does no-one any good – the dog, the connections, the punters or the public.

Tabcorp Should Get Its Finger Out

It’s all very well for Tabcorp’s boss, David Attenborough, to complain* about the activities of corporate and overseas bookmakers, but should he try to be more competitive himself?

*See address to American Chamber of Commerce, 28 August, listed on Tabcorp website.

The major example can be seen in Tabcorp’s Fixed Odds pricing, where books of 130% are normal and roughly parallel those of the online people. These are punitive figures which no normal customer can ever overcome over a period. In traditional wagering terms, they are an insult to punters.

Attenborough could well order the figures reduced to, say, 117%, which equates to the deduction he takes out of conventional tote business (an average of $16 out of every $100 or $14.50 for Win bets). He could make the pace and re-take the initiative from the NT group. No doubt the NT companies would follow and customers would get a better deal all round. Turnover and prices would both be better, and there is still plenty left for the betting operators to dine out on.

Another sensible move would be to get rid of the ridiculous Duet bet, which hardly anyone buys, and thereby boost turnover for standard Quinella and Exacta betting, both badly in need of help at the smaller greyhound meetings.

So why doesn’t he?

Of course, part of the answer is that, contrary to Attenborough’s claim that “we have morphed into a more agile, customer-led organisation”, Tabcorp is hell-bent on scraping as much as it can out of every bet made, almost regardless of where that will lead customers and the industry in the longer term. For Fixed Odds, the current attitude is that if they (corporate bookies) can do it, so can we. For Duet betting, they obviously cannot be bothered cleaning up a relic of the ages. The customers are not leading at all, Tabcorp is.


Mind you, state racing authorities are no better than Tabcorp as they are also in the 130% camp when quoting odds on their formguides. What a terrible example to set for the industry! It is impossible to understand their motives in doing that. Their other options are to use a 100% book as a guideline to runners’ real chances or to adopt the tote figure of 117% which would allow direct price comparisons.

Let’s take those comparisons a bit further. As I write, at Horsham (Tuesday) the Watchdog is suggesting books of 125%, 132%, 128%, and 127% for four of the better races. But in real life punters did things a little differently. All four of the Watchdog’s top picks also ended up as favourites but at shorter prices.


NSW TAB Watchdog Actual
Race 4 $2.80 $1.80 Won
Race 5 $1.70 $1.40 Won
Race 6 $2.00 $1.90 Lost
Race 7 $2.50 $2.30 Lost


This introduces three features of greyhound betting; (a) punters over-bet on the favourite; (b) the Watchdog, as the most prominent tipster, probably influences punters’ selections; and (c) the average punter is not paying attention to value.We have not shown Fixed Odds for these races but they are in fact identical to the final tote payout. Information on what happened during the course of betting is not available.

An even dollar on each of these favourites resulted in a loss of 80 cents, or 20% of your $4 investment. To put it another way, the Watchdog’s suggested odds are more sensible but they never happen in practice. Maybe GRV should take out a bookie’s licence?

A further comment would be that most punters would not be aware of the final odds because only around half of the pool would be evident prior to the time punters had to place their bet. Any later fluctuations are influenced by the relatively small size of greyhound pools – and Horsham’s twilight slot on Tuesdays is as good as it gets for provincial racing, often producing bigger pools than for evening races in town (on the NSW TAB).

The outcome is that maybe half the punters are taking a pig in a poke because they are gambling without real knowledge while the other half may understand the form but is still forced to guess that the final price will be satisfactory – and often it will not be. Of course, this may well be one of the factors which encourage a shift to Fixed Odds Betting. Seldom will that do you any good but at least you will know what you are getting.

From the industry’s viewpoint, it is stuck with a volatile betting structure, one which has grown up like Topsy and is totally out of the control of racing administrators. The real competition we used to have – from on-course bookmakers – has disappeared along with the on-course crowds they once served. Indeed, that change is the real reason why controls over wagering should have changed long ago. (Efforts by RNSW to regulate online bookmakers are belated steps but are unlikely to reverse the trends significantly).

Aside from extra regulation, solutions, or rather assistance of some sort, are available from two sources – the creation of a national pool with greater price certainty, and mounting efforts to better educate punters about greyhound racing.

The Federal Minister for Social Services, Kevin Andrews, is currently looking into online gambling activities and so may well venture into the wagering scene, particularly as many prominent people are complaining – eg Tabcorp, Racing NSW, former Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett, and probably Racing Victoria (which often tends to be follower, not a leader).


Here is one that slipped by me, largely because I take a very low interest in racing at Ipswich due to its disruptive layout.

However, since the recent transfer of form and results data from the local Queensland people to the GRNSW-operated Ozchase system some changes have occurred, not least being the fact that winning box information is missing.

Importantly, they have ended up with the dreadful Tasmanian practice of assigning sectional times for Ipswich 431m races to whatever dog won the race, never mind what actually led. Consequently, future career records will be distorted because they follow only what goes onto the formline.

Queensland is also deficient at all other provincial tracks.

Add to that the more common practice – at NSW Northern Rivers tracks, for example – of not allocating the single sectional time for all short races to any runner at all and you have a dog’s breakfast of data.

Expecting serious punters to support the sport under these conditions is fanciful dreaming.

Help Is Available If You Want It

Not for the first time, a boffin is on his way to radically changing a sport. This time it’s the way tennis coaches can make use of technology to improve their charge’s tactics.

The Australian reports that a USA-based Aussie, Damien Saunder, is collecting data from Hawkeye files to better guide tennis players on where to place their serves, for example. Saunder is a geospatial designer specialising in online mapping and data visualisation. He grew up playing tennis and AFL in Wangaratta.

“Tennis is a spatial game, meaning that the location of the ball or where a stroke or player is and therefore we can begin to understand the spatial patters about the sport”, Saunder said. “Many sports, like football, basketball and baseball have been using analytics for years to explore potential unknown patterns about the game, their players and opponent’s tactics”.

Currently, analysis of this sort is in widespread use by AFL and NRL clubs and the Australian Institute of Sport to check how well their players are doing, where they run, jump or swim, where injuries occur and how much work they do – and more.

Saunder’s technique goes well beyond the data you might have already seen on Hawkeye screens. For example, it not only looks at where the server places the ball but also how well the receiver handles it.

The underlying technology seems ideally suited to working out how best to design a greyhound track. Science will beat opinion any time.

A small example is already here as Tasmanian thoroughbreds carry a GPS marker to allow authorities to pinpoint their exact positions at various stages of the race and then calculate sectional times accurately. (What a pity they can’t move on to local dog races, where existing practices are hopelessly in error).


Full marks for GRV in its effort to rebuild the Healesville straight track. I had thought it improved considerably on the previous version – and it probably did. However a review of the heats of the Cup racing last Sunday revealed a great deal of unpredictable lateral movement, mostly from dogs veering over to the rail and the inside lure. Even dogs racing out wide were crabbing their way along, keen to get a better sight of the lure.

Relatively, little of that happens at Capalaba in Queensland, where they use a centre drag lure. So how best to do it?


At Wentworth Park on Saturday Xylia Allen did what she normally does and won. Sweet It Is did what she normally does and lost. They ran 41.76 and 42.15 respectively.

Xylia Allen gets out quickly and leads. Sweet It Is comes out slowly and has to find her way through the maze, usually getting held up a couple of times. Those have always been their patterns and that’s what happened at Wenty.

And that’s why the result at Cannington in the Nationals was an aberration – a top effort from both but still an aberration. As were their relative starting prices. Sweet It Is may well have improved slightly over the last couple of months but that still does not make her a reliable bet in a top race. Apart from the winner, her opposition in the Chairman’s Cup heat was not too marvellous yet punters paid dearly to see her go down at $1.30. If you put a dollar on her both times, you are now losing money.

It’s not just these two. For years now the majority of top staying races have been taken out by leaders. Their staying capacity comes second. See, for example, Bentley Babe, Flashing Floods, Irma Bale and perhaps Dashing Corsair. Admittedly, genuine staying types have often been thin on the ground but that’s another story again.

It also makes another point. While a change of kennel to a top mentor may well produce good results (as with Sweet It Is), you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Sometimes, the stories concentrate on the successes, and ignore the failures, much as punters will tell you about their wins but never their losses. Essentially, Sweet It Is is still what she always was – a talented but slow-beginning stayer.

The bigger disappointment at Wenty was the poor showing of Dusty Moonshine, which was only a shadow of the dog that ran in the 41.90s three times in a row. It would not have beaten Xylia Allen anyway but a fading 42.54 after a good start tells us it was nowhere near its best form. It simply was not fit enough for this class and will not make the final.

Now to the future. Based on its history, Xylia Allen will not be able to repeat its heat time with the final only seven short days away. Whether it can still win is the hard question. Odds-on, look on!


I refuse to read, digest or believe any more stories about record prize money unless the authors first correct their data for inflation. Just to take one example, Xylia Allen, for all her brilliance, would not live with a former “record” money winner, Rapid Journey, if you put them up ten times in a row. Nor with Miata at the other end of the distance scale. Xylia Allen does score in the versatility stakes, but is probably best served over the middle distances.

That inflation, incidentally, has occurred not just in broad economic terms but it the way the industry allocates prize money. Neither of those other two dogs competed for $250,000 to $350,000 first prizes in relative or absolute terms.

Somebody with the data should set, say, the year 2000 as a base and adjust everything back to that level.

The Mystery Of Form Reading

The mystery of form reading

‘This inaccuracy in the form guide was unavoidable due to the need to create a new track for this type of meeting. GRV realises this may cause some inconvenience for punters until such time that there is sufficient history in our system at the SAP and MEP tracks.’

So reads part of the information from GRV about its new MEP and SAP style meetings, which are being held at the Meadows and Sandown Park respectively.

While I can kind of understand what they’re trying to do, I’m sorry to say it but I think this new classification system as it applies to form reading is, to borrow a phrase Winston Churchill used about the old USSR, “a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”

So, what we have is GRV telling us they know the form guide will be inaccurate, but it was unavoidable. I beg to differ.

That it ‘may cause some inconvenience for punters’ is an understatement. Arguably the average punter won’t notice. Which is not good in the longer term. Punters are the lifeblood of racing. Things need to be as clear and straightforward as possible to encourage turnover.

Imagine, a few weeks into the future as someone looks at a form guide and sees SAP and MEP and they ask a mate, “What track is SAP? Is that Sale? Shepparton? Shelbourne Park in Ireland?” When informed it’s actually Sandown Park and there are three or four runs marked SAN as well, do you not think our average punter is going to shake his head in wonderment?

Same track, same distances. The only difference supposedly is the ‘quality’ of the competition. And that, is total rubbish as well. Take the Thursday night meeting at Sandown on 28 August. There were greyhounds engaged with such luminary racing records as 38 starts for 4 wins (10.5%), 37 starts for four wins (10.8%), 41 starts for six wins (14.6%), 49 starts for four wins (8.1%), 65 starts for nine wins (13.8%), 94 starts for nine wins (9.5%) and so on. Remember, this is the peak city meeting of the week.

At the SAP meeting on 31 August -and, dare I say I think ‘sap’ is about the right term for this classification- there were a couple of greyhounds with four wins from 10 starts (40%), and another with 23 wins from 72 outings (31.9%), and plenty of others with reasonable racing records. Yes, there was plenty of rubbish getting a start, but regular greyhound punters are not stupid; they can work out the quality, or otherwise, for themselves.

I feel like I’m in a time warp here. Back in 1998, floods in the Wollongong area led the Bulli club to have its meetings transferred to Wentworth Park. The GBOTA hierarchy decided the deFax form guide should read ‘Bulli’ instead of Wentworth Park to reflect the fact the races weren’t full city meetings.

The stupidity of this was soon shown when a greyhound named Judge Smailes won at ‘Bulli’ over the mythical 520 metres trip in 30.41. The early form guide for a standard Wentworth Park meeting came out a few days later and showed Judge Smailes had only ever won a single event at the course in 30.92.

As I wrote at the time in the now-defunct NSW Greyhound Weekly, ‘…deFax form guides are there to help punters find winners; how the hell are they going to do that if there are greyhounds scooting around Wentworth Park with an alleged best time of 30.92 when the dog won just a week or so earlier in 30.41?’

Sense prevailed and the ‘Bulli’ runs became Wentworth Park starts soon after when the classification reverted to what it should have been all along.

A few lines of computer code could overcome this silliness. That is, instead of having a greyhound’s form show, let’s say, five starts at Sandown Park for two wins, best 29.60, when in fact it has graced the course, let’s say, 15 times for six wins, best 29.55, a modification to a few lines of code would make sure all the runs on this course are included as one set.

Punters, the lifeblood of the industry remember, would not then needlessly be inconvenienced. Sure, the graders will have a bit of a hassle, but then the state of the grading situation across Australia is an issue all on its own.

From now on the form guides for The Meadows and Sandown will be forever inaccurate. When a greyhound races at Sandown Park, for example, say 10 times as a SAP meeting and then races five times at the SAN meetings it will actually have had 15 starts on the track. Its fastest recorded time, when winning, say, at the SAP might be 29.59. It’s fastest recorded time when winning at SAN might be 29.85. So, depending on the meeting it’s best time, and the number of wins, will be all over the shop.

Personally I think it’s absolutely ridiculous. I understand the ‘logic’ behind it, I just happen to think it is terribly flawed.

You might get a greyhound which, let’s say, has raced six times at MEP for three wins and three placings. It then ‘graduates’ to a MEA meeting and the form guide reads ‘FSH’. It clearly likes racing at The Meadows, but someone not paying sufficient attention dismisses it because the greyhound is having its first start at this course after competing very well on some mythical track that looks remarkably like The Meadows. Anywhere else this kind of ‘logic’ would bring howls of laughter.

I’ll be really interested to hear from readers, whether they’re punters, trainers, owners or whatever, as to what they think about this change. As I understand it, as with the silliness of the Bulli/Wentworth Park fiasco, the chief reason for the change is to help the graders. In other words, inconveniencing punters takes precedence over inconveniencing the pencil pushers.

Confessions Of A Partly Successful Writer

Mostly we get good reactions to our articles here, but occasionally a reader takes me to task about a comment I have made. I skip some of these as they tend not to make their point logically, or offer facts to back their story. But I do read them when possible.

One case in point concerned Wag Tail’s run in the Nationals at Cannington. My article had said that one starter had trialled over 715m shortly before the actual race, in which it then ran poorly. This upset one reader although I did not nominate Wag Tail and was actually referring to another runner.

Nevertheless, Wag Tail did trial five days prior in 41.76 and then ran 41.84 to take out 3rd spot in the main race. That followed a fairly busy distance racing program over the previous few weeks, so the question then became whether it was in tip-top condition for the Nationals.

My guess would be barely, if that. Its recent background contained a series of distance races with mostly seven day breaks, which is always a doubtful policy. On its best form, it would have been entitled to run a bit quicker than it did in Perth – not to win but certainly to feature in the Quinella. My impression was that it was a bit flat for the final, which is not surprising given that it had run 715m only five days earlier. The lack of strong opposition allowed it to hold on to the placing.

The other runner of concern was Queen Marina, which both trialled and raced poorly over the full 715m.

The point, as always, is that we keep seeing regular examples of dogs which do not handle a quick back-up very well. And the logic of giving a dog a 715m trial just before a 715m race escapes me. A slip or a 530m trial, perhaps, but not over the full distance.

What happened to the other six runners after arriving in Perth is unknown, according to the formguide, but none had a stewards trial.

Change or Lack of It

Another reader claimed that nobody took any notice of what I wrote, so I was wasting my time. They may be partly right, but that’s about all. For example, several years ago I started asking why Victoria had Non-Penalty races/meetings. And I have kept on with that thought ever since. What purpose did they serve? Was the grading system no good?

Well, just the other day, GRV dumped the practice and converted the twice weekly dates in town into what they now call Meadows Provincial and Sandown Provincial – effectively 5th Grades.

It doesn’t happen overnight, but it does happen. Perhaps I gained some support along the way?

Mind you, none of that embraces what I considered the real problem with those old NP meetings. As soon as they started over a decade ago, field quality at the provincials dropped off, thereby giving clubs less to promote if they were so inclined, and weakening their attraction to serious punters. In exchange, the industry got a mixed bag of maidens, novices, more short races, and dogs out of form or just returning from a spell. Not a good swap. It needs action to reverse that shift. Big feature events are all very well, but it’s the week to week strengths that are the key to maintaining customers.

The Good News Publications

Probably the most common complaint is that I am always “whingeing” about something. Well, there are not too many, really, but there are a few and they are quite right. Except for the spelling. Most people wrongly leave the “e” out of whingeing.

Let me make two points here.

First, there are lashings of commentators saying how marvellous things are, especially if they work for a state authority, and almost none saying there are problems. So, do we have a perfect industry? Hardly, according to numerous moans and groans I keep hearing from both participants and punters, or at the Parliamentary Inquiry in NSW.

Second, that’s not a surprise as the industry is still based on 1950s habits and practices, including its ineffective organisational structures. There has been plenty of change around the edges where services are supplied by outside people. Feeds, medicines and veterinary skills have come along in leaps and bounds. Transport facilities are a millions miles away from the old days. Communications are a whiz by comparison.

Yet we are still running meetings in the same old way, hopefully handing out prize money from the same sources but not at a rate keeping pace with inflation or with standards in other sports. States barely talk to each other and there is little national coordination or consistency. To understand grading policies you need university degrees in mathematics, logic and IT. Since crowds stopped going to the track, the knowledge of greyhound racing has declined and much of the public don’t like what we do anyway. Our public image varies from poor to non-existent.

Put another way, I suggest that were we able to modernise our product and services in keeping with standards in the outside world the opportunity is there to raise incomes by 50% or more. We are selling ourselves short. Our assets and our skills are going to waste. We have long ignored views from outside the inner circle. Our tracks are sub-standard. Our income is dependent on mug gamblers. Management is never seriously challenged, never asked to justify its actions and routinely dismisses criticism, whether right or wrong. We are not running a business but processing pieces of paper, and sometimes not doing that too well.

What it amounts to is that a huge increase in profitability is there to be grabbed if we want it. Consequently, what else is there to do but point out where that might happen? To take no action is to encourage a decline.

So keep writing in. That’s the only way we will get better outcomes.

Full Of Grace Wins The 2014 NCA Victoria Waterloo Cup

The weather gods were shining on us this weekend as we headed to Lang Lang for the running of this year’s Waterloo Cup. Firstly I would like to say a huge thank you to the committee and volunteers from Lang Lang on a job well done. Also to our major sponsor for this event, the Cranbourne Greyhound Racing Club, thank you, your support is greatly appreciated.

Well what can I say but congratulations to our NCA President Peter Craig and connections on winning this year’s Waterloo Cup with your fawn superstar Full Of Grace. She went into this event as one of the main chances and favourite with the bookie Garry Thomas and she didn’t put a foot wrong all weekend. To the runner-up Texan trained by Karen Leek well done to you also, he was gallant in defeat but just beaten by a better greyhound on the day.

We had 45 nominations for this year’s Cup which was a little disappointing, but the quality of the dogs we did have was excellent so thank you all for your support.

The Waterloo Plate was won by Dublin Down trained by David Dawson with the runner-up Why Not Wayne. Both of these greyhounds also coursed well over the weekend and should be proud of their efforts.

In the Waterloo Purse, Graham Whitford’s Tommy El was too good today for Why Not Oscar trained by Wayne Gray from Wendouree.

The Silver Eagle Challenge only had 6 runners return to contest and Baines Park, another from David Dawson’s kennel, proved to be too good for Some Nights trained by Del Vigor. This event is designed for dogs which have been defeated on the first day with preference given to those defeated in their 3rd course in the Waterloo Cup.

The first of our supporting events was the lady trainer’s Maiden and this year we saw Casboult trained at Junction Village by Valda Rose go past the post first over Toni Jones’ Rex Best.

Our Junior Handler’s Maiden was won by Bassyappa trained at Bass by Rob Colpoys who was assisted today by his granddaughter Mia. Congrats team Colpoys! Runner-up in this event was Trevor Whitford’s Golden Hippy who was having his first outing at the coursing so well done to him.

The Sandown GRC Dog Maiden was next and the winner was Broden Rain for Aaron Setford, who trained a double in the maiden’s when Broden Thunder got up in the mixed Maiden event which was next on the card. The runner-up against Rain was Captain Revenge for Ash craven who made the trip down from Wangaratta. Thunder’s runner-up was Bogan’s Hero, another from Trevor Whitford’s camp.

In the Petpanels Dog Puppy Yarra Gun was awarded first place after Bloss’s Bluffing was withdrawn from the final due to an injury, so we wish him a speedy recovery and hope it’s nothing too serious.

The MGRA Dog Puppy saw local greyhound Banjo Bullet trained by Ken Virtue who was making a return to coursing after a number of years away so a nice welcome back to team Virtue! Ima Lonely Boy trained by Del Vigor was runner-up in this event.

The Elite Greyhounds Mixed Maiden was won by Soul Maker who once again coursed well all day for team Britton. Big Fancy was runner-up trained at Devon Meadows by Marlene Schmidt.

Last event on the card was the Aleeka Lodge Bitch Puppy and Laquita Lass trained by Graeme Campbell was too good today for Game Maker, who was another one from Rob Britton’s team.

On a somewhat lighter note our day concluded with an Ice Bucket Challenge after our vet Barb Backhoy accepted a challenge from GRV Steward Carl Scott on the proviso that Carl completes the challenge as well. Grant Truett, who is another GRV Steward, said he would also complete the challenge if another $50 was donated. It was and he did also complete the challenge. Great job guys and thank you to all of coursing patrons. We raised approx $450 which we will send off to MND Australia to help them find a cure for Motor Neurone Disease. Many of you may have seen Neale Daniher speak about this and the Ice Bucket Challenge in the media recently.

This concludes this year’s coursing season so I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our sponsors, trainers and supporters for coming along to our meetings and we hope to see you all back again in 2015.
Safe travels to you and your hounds and we look forward to seeing you in 2015.

Are Horses, Dogs And Humans Different?

Following our recent mentions of the risks involved in stayers backing up within seven days it was interesting to note some comments by Phil Purser, who runs the Queensland website and is long experienced in all three codes as an owner/trainer.

Given the recent rains all down the eastern seaboard Phil made a point of examining the performances of horses in the three big cities, including their likely handling of soft tracks. Also, heading into spring, many were coming back from lengthy spells. Here is part of what he said.

“So this half fit and somewhat overweight thoroughbred – that is resuming from a spell and has had to be pushed out to the line in slow or more particularly “heavy” going – may well have had a gutbuster without the trainer even subsequently knowing that the horse isn’t quite right. The horse may eat up okay, be as bright as a button at trackwork, yet run below par at its next start. I’ve seen that scenario unfold a thousand times in my lifetime of following racehorses. And it’s probably a fact of life that with the drug laws as they are today in thoroughbred racing, in particular to the way that bi-carb use is targeted, that it’s probably harder for the modern day trainer to legally get a horse over a hard run quickly”.

This more or less parallels our observations about greyhounds in staying races. Xylia Allen has several times done poorly the week after a top win. Dusty Moonshine did likewise at Wentworth Park seven days after a series of well-spaced wins. In contrast, Sweet It Is has rarely backed up too quickly so it is no coincidence that it has generally put in very consistent runs. As it happens, it was just awarded Run of the Year by AGRA for its last to first win at Wentworth Park in April in 41.78. However, as suggested here previously, the track was lightning fast over that period – including when Xylia Allen broke the track record (but faded from the home turn a week later).

It was also notable that at least one distance runner was trialled over the full Cannington 715m trip only days before the National race. It ran poorly.

There cannot be much doubt that neither horses nor dogs can be relied upon to put in top runs a week apart over long trips. The odd exception to that rule does not invalidate the principle. Or, as vet Dr John Kohnke warned (see our article on 11 August), be extra careful about “over-exertion on a particular day” or when a greyhound “exceeds its physical limit”.


The shortcomings of the Ozchase form system came to the fore again in the Nationals at Cannington, this time due also to our sloppy friends down in Tasmania. Here’s what the Tasracing tipster said about the local hope prior to the distance race:

“Painted Dotty also is suited to box one and should be (sic) begin like she has at her recent starts she will make her presence felt at the business end of proceedings. The Mick Stringer-trained bitch has been arcing (sic) in peal (sic) form of late over the 720-metre trip in Sydney and in Tasmania and will go into the race in great condition”.

Ozchase more or less backed up that claim by printing (ex the Tasmanian race results) sectionals allegedly run by Painted Dotty at its last two starts – ie 5.17 and 5.11 – over the Launceston 720m trip. Luckily the former time was correct as it led all the way. The second is completely wrong as she had to come from well back and ran to the lead only in the home straight. That 5.11 time was the property of another dog altogether, not Painted Dotty.

For reasons which are impossible to understand, all Tasmanian sectional times – but only one per race – are assigned to the winner, not necessarily the dog that led, thereby corrupting career records for large numbers of dogs.

In the event, Painted Dotty got away well from its rails box in Perth, led for a while and then disappeared off the map when it got to “the business end”.

This sort of problem is compounded by the absence of sectional times for the majority of runners in provincial races in NSW and Queensland, as well as for all races in Tasmania.

The point is that if you have no integrity and consistency in the system, then all sorts of predictions can go wrong and people will be misled. Deliberately giving the wrong dog a fast sectional time is a disgraceful practice yet it has been going on for months, despite constant reminders from this column. Even the Tassie tipster was so frantic to get out the comments that he did not bother to fix all his typos. Not a good look.


While on the subject of formguides, what a pity that authorities can’t make life a bit easier for fans. Here are a few examples of track codes dreamed up by each of the three main producers. “DFS” is the Daily Form Service contracted by Tabcorp to prepare wall sheets for some 2,000 outlets in NSW.


Ozchase GRV DFS


In addition, DFS readers have to get used to the most recent race being put first when the normal practice is to put it last. GRV still inserts sectional and overall times for handicap runs without noting what those handicaps were. For anyone reading Ozchase form guides, first make sure you have a magnifying glass handy, especially in bad light. The font is far too small. And avoid TAB outlets which feature the new touchscreens prepared by someone called FLEXICOST – mostly they contain only the last three runs and do not show any times or margins unless the dog won. Where installed, these screens have replaced the DFS wall sheets, which mostly offer only three runs, too.

All of which indicates a complete lack of national supervision in greyhound racing. Standards don’t matter, consistency is out the window, just bung it out for the mugs. Well, for no-one, really, because the mugs don’t read formguides anyway.


From the stewards report for race 9 at Ballarat (Aug27).

“Jessie Small crossed to the rail soon after the start, checking Plantinum (sic) Shen, Dyna Zerg and Lagoon Mytye”.

The first bit is right but five viewings of the video cannot uncover the truth of the rest of the sentence. Those three dogs were well behind the fast-beginning Jessie Small at all stages. And “Plantinum Shen” should be Platinum Shen. Are these guys getting paid by the word?

Monday, 1 September 2014

Greyhound Box Draw For Shepparton – Monday, 1 September 2014

Race No. 1Shepparton Aged Care7:08 PM (VIC time)
Maiden event over 450 metres at Shepparton Of $1,415 Prizemoney.
1st: $990 2nd: $285 3rd: $140.


1RUBY’S ENTITY [M]25FSHM Wallworth (Gisborne)
3STEEL TRUE BLUE (NSW)[M]FSHW Bocquet (Mullengandra)
4MISS ROMELDA [M]47FSTDM Fothergill (Numurkah)
5DUGHALL ENTITY [M]24FSHM Wallworth (Gisborne)
6HIGHFIELD SILK [M]7FSTDS Divers (Tamleugh)
7KANGA KEL (NSW)[M]FSHT Collins (Lara)
8POWER OVERLOAD [M]4FSHP Bartlett (Bamawm)
9HINNOMUNJI FIRE [M]Res.FSHD Pattinson (Pearcedale)
10VOLATILE BALE (NSW)[M]Res.76277NBTT Womann (Lara)
Race No. 2Byers Electrical7:33 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 390 metres at Shepparton Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1MANELITO (NSW)[5]55362NBTD Petersen (Wangaratta)
2ALL INN LINE [5]6216622.70(2)T Duncan (Harston)
3ELAY GALAXY [5]753F6FSHR Camilleri (Lara)
4HIGH BABE [5]55537NBTL Dalton (Coldstream)
5LIQUID CLUB [5]261FSHS Fisher (Lara)
6KOMONDO [5]2716322.47(5)R Henness (Heathcote)
7BE MY LOVE (NSW)[5]1361822.46(8)S Carswell (Elmore)
8HOL [5]22241NBTD Moore (Kialla)
9REUBEN WILL (NSW)[5]Res.66462FSHJ Hartley (Forest Hill)
10KHARLESSI [5]Res.37765FSTDD Petersen (Wangaratta)
Race No. 3Middy’s Data & Electrical7:51 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 450 metres at Shepparton Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1IMMORTAL POWER (NSW)[5]121FSTDG Dainton (Cosgrove)
2TIGGERLONG MOON (NSW)[5]22423NBTR Whybrow (Chiltern)
3DELLAVEDOVA [5]65222FSTDS Fisher (Lara)
4TRON’S SON [5]23266FSTDS Fisher (Lara)
5LUMUMBA [5]17FSHM Hehir (Viewbank)
6BURST A MOVE [5]33372FSTDD Pattinson (Pearcedale)
7SPIRITED REVENGE (NSW)[5]1FSTDA Craven (Wangaratta)
8DEE LIGHTNING [5]3621325.64(6)R Henness (Heathcote)
9DYNA MACHINA (NSW)[5]Res.7125NBTJ Hunt (Avalon)
10RECKO BALE (NSW)[5]Res.63381NBTT Womann (Lara)
Race No. 4Cardamone Real Estate (gobis)8:08 PM (VIC time)
Novice Grade 5 event over 650 metres at Shepparton Of $3,175 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,525 2nd: $430 3rd: $220 GOBIS: $1,000.


1ARISIA BALE (NSW)[M]25266FSHJ Hunt (Avalon)
2BREAKING NEWS [5]67367FSHS Dalton (Coldstream)
3BUCKLE UP AXEL (TAS)[5]28473FSHS Mills (Tooradin)
4SMALL ONE [M]22324FSHG Jose (Catani)
5MO TOWN SAN [5]43173FSTDP Clark (Wangaratta)
6BUCKLE UP NIKKI (TAS)[5]46878FSHS Mills (Tooradin)
7TAMINICK GIRL [5]85327FSTDG Campbell (Peechelba)
8ALLEN GUNDAM (NSW)[5]65134FSHT Womann (Lara)
9HOT CHILTERN [5]Res.41347FSTDC Newman (Chiltern)
10CORROBOREE QUEEN (NSW)[5]Res.75482FSHB Limbach (Gladstone Park)
Race No. 5Lights Plus – Shepparton8:28 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 450 metres at Shepparton Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1WAR ROOM [5]41413FSHM Carter (Violet Town)
2MINKARA YARMI (NSW)[5]54442NBTJ Hartley (Forest Hill)
3FEIKUAI ZACK [5]14441FSHA Inger (Nambrok)
4IMA LEGEND [5]75411FSHD Minarelli (Cranbourne)
5WILSON’S DREAM (NSW)[5]31567FSHS Stefanos (Longwood)
6MULTI KING [5]21312NBTB Gatt (Melton West)
7FEIKUAI MOLLY [5]75842FSTDP Tabone (Nambrok)
8MISTER SUNRAYSIA [5]1674625.51(5)P Clark (Wangaratta)
9LEWIS FIELDS [5]Res.63826FSHT Collins (Lara)
10DYNA ZERG (NSW)[5]Res.73417NBTS Collins (Lara)
Race No. 6Totalspan Cobram – Grv Vic Bred Final (gobis)8:48 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Final event over 450 metres at Shepparton Of $5,360 Prizemoney.
1st: $3,050 2nd: $875 3rd: $435 GOBIS: $1,000.


1ROZEHILL LUCY [5]31472NBTJ Simmonds (Boolarra)
2AZZA AZZA AZZA [4]1211125.18(6)W Vassallo (Devon Meadows)
3LEXIA [5]76312NBTK Podmore (Wagga Wagga)
4TRAIL BLAZING [4]5424125.77(6)T Womann (Lara)
5WILD LAST STRESS [4]1162125.76(6)K Ward (Mount Moriac)
6ELITE STRESS [5]1111225.70(4)N Carthew (Newcomb)
7MOHINGA MAX [4]2121125.53(3)W Methven (Wooragee)
8BLUE TARTAN [5]71312NBTM Mason (Finley)
9RECKLESS BROWN [5]Res.13113NBTR Clark (Toolleen)
10BLACK BEARD [5]Res.41883NBTS Tabb (Norlane)
Race No. 7Rexel Electrical Supplies9:08 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 450 metres at Shepparton Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1DYNA OLWEN (NSW)[5]2324225.72(4)D Coleman (Lara)
2HETTIE ALLEN (NSW)[5]12321FSHS Collins (Lara)
3DON JULIO [5]67881FSHR Henness (Heathcote)
4SHE’S VIVACIOUS [5]16151FSTDS Daniliuk (Sunbury)
5NAVAHO [5]2123525.71(6)L Austin (Eaglehawk)
6COLLEGE QUEEN [5]2321725.75(5)M Chilcott (Heathcote)
7HIGH COMMANDO [5]31272NBTC Dalton (Coldstream)
8GEORGE DELAKER (QLD)[5]81872FSHA Setford (Devon Meadows)
9MISS TRON [5]Res.41318FSHS Fisher (Lara)
10KALIMNA STAR [5]Res.156F5NBTR Sharples (Murchison)
Race No. 8Shepparton Carpet Court9:28 PM (VIC time)
Mixed 4/5 event over 450 metres at Shepparton Of $2,005 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,405 2nd: $400 3rd: $200.


1DON’T BE SHORT [4]5138425.65(5)B Parker (Tatura)
2DYNA TONY (NSW)[4]4452325.32(2)S Collins (Lara)
3BECKENBAUER (SA)[5]51228NBTD Pattinson (Pearcedale)
4DYNA ANDY (NSW)[5]82351NBTR Camilleri (Lara)
5DYNA RAPIDASH (NSW)[5]24535NBTJ Hunt (Avalon)
6NAIL CLIPPER (NSW)[4]6341825.53(4)T Auld (Tatura)
7ALLEN ODIN (NSW)[5]41733FSTDS Collins (Lara)
8RICK FERN [4]1452425.54(2)M Mason (Finley)
9RED LINE LAD [5]Res.83854FSHG Jose (Catani)
10MINORITY (TAS)[5]Res.6814225.57(8)G Campbell (Peechelba)
Race No. 9Metricon Homes9:48 PM (VIC time)
Mixed 3/4 event over 390 metres at Shepparton Of $2,360 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,650 2nd: $475 3rd: $235.


1TIGGERLONG JESS (NSW)[4]1842122.42(6)R Quigley (Chiltern)
2EL JAY TORANA [4]7245F22.39(3)S Kaliszewski (Melton)
3VICTORIA PLEDGE [4]8711222.01(2)R Comensoli (Wangaratta)
4RUSTIC ROCKET [4]2427422.28(8)M Carter (Violet Town)
5SHADOW LANE [4]56364FSTDM Carter (Violet Town)
6DIMPLE WAY (NSW)[3]7677422.09(4)D Fisher (Lara)
7SYMMETRY LAD [4]5565322.26(2)S Kaliszewski (Melton)
8EVER TO BE [4]1212222.53(1)D Coleman (Lara)
Race No. 10O’sullivan Insurance Brokers P/l10:06 PM (VIC time)
Mixed 4/5 event over 390 metres at Shepparton Of $2,005 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,405 2nd: $400 3rd: $200.


1SENORITA DAPHNE [5]46782NBTT Womann (Lara)
2MY TAB [5]74312FSHP Tabone (Nambrok)
3KATUNGA TIME [5]2886222.19(1)K Dexter (Katunga)
4NAMRON STAR [5]38214NBTJ Sharp (Lara)
5RUMOUR MILL (NSW)[4]2411122.43(6)M Carter (Violet Town)
6ALL INN BLACK [4]3133822.36(8)T Duncan (Harston)
7HIGH LIGHT STAR [4]8863421.98(1)L Dalton (Coldstream)
8HOLD ON BEAU [5]23656NBTB Gatt (Melton West)
9BIG BAD ROY [5]Res.28858NBTP Stefanos (Longwood)
10ALL IN TEARS [5]Res.1366622.46(5)T Duncan (Harston)
Race No. 11Sherbourne Terrace Hotel Motel10:25 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 390 metres at Shepparton Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1PAGANI BRIDIE [5]4228422.53(1)J Donaldson (Euroa)
2ALL INN STAR [5]1332822.64(7)T Duncan (Harston)
3IN A DAZE [5]81253FSHS Mills (Tooradin)
4MIGHTY HULK (NSW)[5]61414NBTT Van taarling (Tallygaroopna)
5JAKE ROB [5]321F8NBTR Whybrow (Chiltern)
6AUSSIE IRISH [5]41426NBTN Burns (Rushworth)
7PAGANI LOLA [5]7575122.47(6)J Donaldson (Euroa)
8COSE DROM [5]4616522.37(8)G Austin (Eaglehawk)
9BIG BAD ROY [5]Res.28858NBTP Stefanos (Longwood)
10PREMIER WALLY [5]Res.2165622.36(1)W Methven (Wooragee)

Michael Power Charged Under Rule GAR86 (q)


He did engage in conduct which was detrimental or prejudicial to the interest, welfare, image, control or promotion of greyhound racing.


Stewards on the 26 August 2014, conducted an Inquiry into the conduct of Mr. Power in the kennel area of the Healesville Greyhound Racing Club on 27July 2014 prior to event 7.

After hearing the evidence, Stewards charged Mr Power with a breach of GAR86 (q) in that he did speak in an inappropriate manner to GRV Steward Ms. Heather Montgomery.

Mr. Power pleaded guilty to the charge.

Stewards found Mr. Power guilty as charged and suspended his licence for two months, wholly suspended for a period of twelve months; effective 26/08/2014 pending no further breaches of GAR 86(q) or 86(g).

Grace And Polish At Longwood

After receiving a great number of nominations all was looking well for a superb Derby and Oaks meeting. Whilst the weather during the week left a lot to be desired the weather gods smiled on coursing and the sun shone at its winter best. It was cold early on both mornings but the longer the days went the better the weather became for coursing.

31 girls and 33 boys kicked off Day 1 and kick off they did with some close courses. The girls started the day with the 136th running of the Oaks following by the boys in the Derby. By Sunday morning we were down to the Quarter Finals in both the Oaks & Derby and their respective consolation races. In the Oaks our final eight were Find Out Friday, Kraken Sal, Tracey Fozz, Laquita Lass, Senorita Crisis, Full Of Grace, Enchanted Bling and Shirdon Wee Nell. All of these pups showed their strength, stamina and speed during the day and by the afternoon tea break we had just two heading off to slips to contest the final.

Kraken Sal, a Fawn Bitch (Mogambo – Rose Patch) July 2012 owned and trained by Kevin Eyles at Murchison and Full Of Grace, also a Fawn Bitch (El Grand Senor – Catch Up Sunday) March 2012 who is owned by the Amstel syndicate and trained by our NCA President Peter Craig at Langwarrin. Both of these girls coursed brilliantly across the weekend, but in the end a few months in age and a tad more experience may have been a contributing factor which saw Full Of Grace get the break in the final stages of the course and prove how strong she is. Congratulations to the Amstel/Craig team I am sure they will be smiling for a while about this win.

The quarter-finals of the Derby looked like this on Sunday morning Kraken Concord, Zulekha, Skin To Bone, Polished Steel and Forheza. Not to be outdone by the girls in the Oaks these guys showed also what they were made of and whilst they made the judge earn his dinner with a few very close courses, when we broke for afternoon tea we had Kraken Concord, a black dog and littermate of Kraken Sal, also owned and trained by Kevin Eyles, along with Polished Steel, also a black dog (Magic Sprite – Fifield Lass) March 2012 owned by Glenn Smith and trained at Wangaratta by Ashley Craven.

It was hard to say who was going to get the prize going into this final and the crowd was divided on who they thought would win. Once again Polish Steel got the edge over Kraken Concord in the middle part of the course and finished off the better, taking out the final of this year’s derby by a couple of lengths in the end. A great effort by all finalists and I am sure you are all very happy with your charges.

Next on the card was the Consolation Number 1’s which are for greyhounds beaten in the first round of the Derby & Oaks. Oaks Consolation Number 1 was won by In A Daze trained at Tooradin by Stuart Mills and she was too good today for a newcomer to coursing Pevensay, who is trained at Yarrawonga by John Shaw.

The Derby Consolation 1 was won by Swan To Steele who is trained at Golden Square by our broadcaster this weekend Noel Massina. Great job today both on the track and on the microphone Noel! Runner Up in this event was Intrepid Voyager, trained at Maffra by the CEO of the Sale & District Greyhound Racing Club, Des Dooley. Thanks to the Sale & District GRC who are our major sponsor for this Derby and Oaks meeting and have continued their generous support of this event for about the past five years.

Next was the Consolation Number 2’s and in the Oaks we saw Black And Pretty, trained at Wattle Glen by Pat Burley get the goods over Go Go Danni, who is part of David Dawson’s team from Crossover.

In the Derby Consolation Number 2 it was El Cee Dee getting to the winning post first for Glenn Campbell over Clive McLennan’s Dynamic Luke.

Then we moved onto the heats of our Twin Code Challenge. In this event we called for and got 32 All Aged greyhounds who firstly had to make it to the final in their heat, so yes they had to run three times in a day, and then head off to Shepparton on the 11th August, 2014 to contest a Grand Final over the 390 Metres.

Heat One saw a final between Gypsy Bling and Cette For Speed. Cette for Speed showed his speed and won his final in great fashion.

Heat two saw the David Dawson trained duo of Shifty Mifty and Dee Diamond in the final and Shifty got the shift alright over Dee Diamond in the final, showing her speed and endurance was still there at the ripe old age of 4 and a bit! I might add Shifty had a litter of pups not too long ago, so a great effort by her to win this final today.

Heat Three was won by Mal Davis’ Big Bad Tom and the runner-up was Ten Aces trained at Kyabram by Graeme Glass.

The final heat was won by another from the Glass team, this time Moonshine Crash, who showed off his talent to get the goods over Tiggerlong Moon who is trained at Chiltern by Ray Whybrow. Congratulations to all of the finalists and I look forward to seeing you at Shepparton for the Grand final next Monday. Just a reminder the two reserve runners for this event will be drawn by GRV and will be made up of the greyhounds defeated in the semi-finals of these heats. Two greyhounds will be randomly drawn to take part if required, so trainers don’t forget to check the fields to see if you were successful in gaining a reserve runner place in this event.

The second last of our supporting events on the card was the Bendigo GRC Maiden Dog and we saw Mr Genetic, trained by Craig Davis at Altona Green, prove to have that extra bit of fuel in his tank required to get to the post in first place over a well know circle specialist Nic Nat Nui, who has had some time off recently with a Stopper Bone problem. His owners decided to get Allan Meyer from Hoppers Crossing to see how he faired on the coursing grounds. Don’t worry Allan I don’t think he will be retaining this Maiden status on the coursing for too long!

Last but not least was the GRV Maiden Bitch Stake, which was won by another of Team Dawson’s girls Dublin Dee. Runner-up in this event was Albion, trained at Shepparton by Brian Knight.

On behalf of the NCA executive I would like to congratulate the Longwood Coursing Club on a fantastic meeting as always, also our slipper Peter Gavin who only started slipping at meetings this year and I am sure many of you trainers would agree is doing a sterling job, and finally to all of our sponsors. We really couldn’t do what we do without your continued valuable support so once again thank you.

Our next meeting is the GOTBA Cup meeting being conducted at Lang Lang on Sunday 17th August, 2014. Lang Lang is also the host club of this year’s big one, the 2014 Waterloo Cup, so this next meeting will be your last chance to have a look at Lang Lang before the Waterloo! I hope to see you there and in the meantime safe travels to you all and your greys!

RIP Elektra – One Of The All Time Greats

One of Australian Greyhound Racing’s true great stayers passed away today. Elektra was one of the true champions of the modern era and will be greatly missed.

ARG was lucky enough to catch up with her proud owner and long term friend Philip Lenehan to discuss the life and career of an all-time favourite.

“There was two stages to her career. Firstly was her time with Bate and then post-Bate with Keith Harding in WA. It’s funny, Batesy (Graeme Bate) actually announced her retirement to GRV and NGF and looked silly when we sent her to WA. He wasn’t real happy when I pulled her out of retirement, but we thought she would be suited going around the one track consistently at Cannington. She won the Galaxy and was the 2008 WA greyhound of the year, so I think the decision was justified.”

Philip, or Red Eye to his mates, laughed whilst telling a story involving ARG’s own Kevin Pitstock.

“Kevin trialled her one night at Warrnambool before she had raced. He had a black bitch that was similar and we had everyone convinced she was Kevin’s bitch Pitch n Putt. One of Warrnambool’s large punters backed Pitch n Putt off the map at Horsham and of course she ran nowhere.”

“The funny thing is that the plan worked beautifully until we backed her at her first start for a fair whack. Batesy was training for us at the time and had one in the race of Wheeler’s. It was also having its first start and we were told it was just a dog. It had box one and was Dyna Redbull and bolted in. We later found out that Batesy had put a lazy $800 on his and was too smart for us. Dyna Redbull went on to win over 90k in prizemoney. The shame was that 450m was too short for her, or else we might have had the last laugh.”

Whilst speaking to “Red Eye” the passion was obvious when discussing Elektra.

“Jill basically ran the show. She would always bark at strangers and was always a bit different. But we loved her regardless and loved having her around the place. She would just roam and enjoy the property daily. She started everything with the Lektra name and really put our name back on the map.”

When I asked Red Eye what his favourite memory was of this superstar bitch, the answer surprised but made perfect sense.

“It was before the 2006 Sandown Cup final and we were first reserve. Texas Gold was scratched and I was training her myself and was in my first and only group one race as a trainer. Darren McDonald offered 25k and then Dennis Trewin chimed in with a 30k offer before the final and we really ummed and arred about it. My dad wanted to sell, but we decided that we would keep her and the rest is history.”

Elektra wasn’t the only talented bitch to come out of the Primo Uno-Natural Class litter, with the highly talented Speedy Lino also flying the flag for the litter.

“Speedy Lino was meant to be Speedy Uno and the GRV couldn’t read my shithouse handwriting. Everyone wondered where the Lino came from and when she won 80k in prizemoney I didn’t care what she was called. We actually ended up calling one of the others in the litter Speedy Uno and I got my wife Sue to write the papers.”

When we look at a bitch of the ilk of the great Elektra we are instantly drawn to the breeding barn and what she has thrown and what the remainder of the line can produce.

“Lektra Jay was the best of the racedogs. Lektra Radiant also had a lot of ability and Lektra Johnson was a favorite of ours. Elektra and her pups cracked a million in prizemoney and we hope the line can continue. Lektra Scarlett has had a litter to Cosmic Chief and we are hoping that she might carry on the flag for her mum.”

When asked what the favourite Elektra run was, Red Eye was definite and instant.

“The Galaxy win and the racecall when she crossed the line sent tingles up my spine. She could do it and she did.”

Watch the replay below and remember one of the all-time greats who is still locked in the top echelon of prizemoney earners in Australian Greyhound Racing history. RIP champion.

Elektra In One Of Her Scintillating Wins – 2008 Galaxy (3)

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Greyhound Box Draw For Sandown Park – Thursday, 24 July 2014

Race No. 1Find Us On Facebook7:08 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $7,150 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.


1ALLEN KESSEL (NSW)[5]25126NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
2TOMMY EL [5]11822NBTG Whitford (Yarram)
3HOLD ON WINCUP [5]4252229.68(2)D Mowat (Tuerong)
4FEIKUAI MOLLY [5]61534NBTP Tabone (Nambrok)
5DECANUS (QLD)[5]2331NBTK Chalker (Pearcedale)
6RED LINE LAD [5]14816NBTG Jose (Catani)
7SANTA’S SPECIAL (NSW)[5]1634629.96(5)E Lloyd (Anakie)
8MISS PENGUIN [5]6716129.76(6)R Neocleous (Hazelwood North)
9DELTA BOLT (NSW)[5]Res.76713NBTK Bravo (Lovely Banks)
10DUKE BALE (NSW)[5]Res.75622NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
Race No. 2Follow Us @sandowndogs7:25 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $8,225 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,750 2nd: $1,645 3rd: $830.


1RUMERO REASON (NSW)[5]25464NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
2RINASH [5]1631234.68(3)G Laidlay (Devon Meadows)
3ACOLA ROSEBUD (NSW)[5]34533NBTT Noy (New Gisborne)
4DYNA GLINDA (NSW)[5]51373FSTDA Dailly (Anakie)
5AEROPLANE CINDY (NSW)[5]41711FSTDD Murray (Napoleons)
6VOLKSJAGER BLUE [5]31755NBTP Ryder (Corio)
7HESSION BOOTS [5]12546FSTDR Clark (Toolleen)
8MISS SOCIETY [5]4222534.78(5)J Imlach (Pearcedale)
9CRACKERJACK BABE [5]Res.2557234.34(2)A Dailly (Anakie)
Race No. 3Nicki French Sprint7:44 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $7,150 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.


1DELLO BALE (NSW)[5]1217429.41(1)J Hunt (Avalon)
2SOOTY LEE (QLD)[5]11173NBTM Briganti (Tuerong)
3DYNA GELDOF (NSW)[5]41174NBTS Collins (Lara)
4DEADLY BOY [5]5631529.54(1)S Mckenna (Napoleons)
5STYLISH SHAZZ [5]1233529.56(5)J Formosa (Heathcote)
6APRIL ROSE [5]11142NBTR Ashworth (Cowwarr)
7YAKAMOV BALE (NSW)[5]23562NBTJ Hunt (Avalon)
8CHECK MY SWAGGER (NSW)[5]2521329.83(2)T Curtain (Cranbourne South)
9WOWZA LEE [5]Res.6226529.72(5)J Cottrell (Langwarrin)
10DUKE BALE (NSW)[5]Res.75622NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
Race No. 4Nar Nar Goon Fc8:08 PM (VIC time)
Mixed 4/5 event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $7,600 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,320 2nd: $1,520 3rd: $760.


1KEYBOW (NSW)[5]2241429.36(2)D Mcdonald (Devon Meadows)
2AL MORAN [5]1126229.82(5)A Armstrong (Huntly)
3FULLY CHARGED [4]1121429.69(6)S Barker (Elphinstone)
4OLLIE BALE (NSW)[5]74F1329.36(5)A Dailly (Anakie)
5CRACKERJACK ROSE [4]2141329.71(2)A Dailly (Anakie)
6PRUE BALE (NSW)[5]7646829.42(4)A Dailly (Anakie)
7LEKTRA HAWK [4]2435329.50(4)I Cockerell (Buckley)
8WHITE WALKER [4]1241529.82(2)T Reid (Yuroke)
9DELTA BOLT (NSW)[5]Res.76713NBTK Bravo (Lovely Banks)
10WOWZA LEE [5]Res.6226529.72(5)J Cottrell (Langwarrin)
Race No. PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 715 metres at Sandown park Of $8,225 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,750 2nd: $1,645 3rd: $830.


1FANTASIZZING [5]66354NBTN King (Pearcedale)
2SIR GAZZA [5]26535NBTR Britton (Lara)
3PARIS SPARKS [5]65486NBTD Pulis (Moe South)
4UNIX BALE (NSW)[5]73355FSTDS Collins (Lara)
5OXLEY MAJOR (NSW)[5]14655FSTDR Britton (Lara)
6ARKTIKA [5]53173FSTDM Chilcott (Heathcote)
7HE ISN’T REALLY [5]81141FSTDC Schlensog (Anakie)
8SHALL SHE ROCK [5]68153FSTDD Crawford (Pearcedale)
9OPTIMUS BART (SA)[5]Res.61614FSHA Debattista (Toolleen)
Race No. 6Rsn – Racing & Sport Final (gobis)8:52 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Final event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $19,650 Prizemoney.
1st: $12,000 2nd: $3,500 3rd: $1,750 GOBIS: $2,400.


1GRUBBY [4]6114129.77(6)K Leek (Devon Meadows)
2GODRIC GRYFINDOR [5]3651229.62(2)M Dopper (Lara)
3QUICK SUCCESSION [4]3712129.63(5)D Mcdonald (Devon Meadows)
4JACK SILVER (NSW)[4]3114129.67(3)M Carter (Violet Town)
5HOSTILE (QLD)[4]6175129.53(1)D Beasley (Footscray West)
6ENNIS BALE (NSW)[4]1244129.68(7)J Hunt (Avalon)
7SEE HIM FIRST [4]2167129.72(3)M Mallia-magri (Avalon)
8ELITE DEVIL (QLD)[4]2142129.77(1)M Mallia-magri (Avalon)
9HOLD ON WINCUP [5]Res.4252229.68(2)D Mowat (Tuerong)
10ASTRONOMIC (WA)[5]Res.15352NBTD Mcdonald (Devon Meadows)
Race No. 7Berwick Mazda Grv Vic Bred Final (gobis)9:11 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Final event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $16,685 Prizemoney.
1st: $10,000 2nd: $2,860 3rd: $1,425 GOBIS: $2,400.


1AGENT JACK [5]1414134.18(2)D Hay (Maffra)
2STAR DOLL [5]3154234.59(4)D Murray (Napoleons)
3JUST DUCAL [5]6313134.53(1)J Roberts (Devon Meadows)
4PERFECT TESS [5]3217134.42(6)D Dooley (Maffra)
5FUZZY BUZZY [5]4447134.62(3)A Meyer (Hoppers Crossing)
6LUNAR TOM [5]71712NBTJ Borg (Maryborough)
7ECHELONIC ACTION [5]2364134.55(5)R Camilleri (Lara)
8LIGHTNING STORM [5]71542NBTC Hayes (Mill Park)
9NEWFIRE ROSIE [5]Res.43552NBTP Goold (Monbulk)
10RINASH [5]Res.1631234.68(3)G Laidlay (Devon Meadows)
Race No. 8Macro Meats9:35 PM (VIC time)
Free For All event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $8,940 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,260 2nd: $1,790 3rd: $890.


1CLONE YOUR OWN (NZ)[3]5537129.41(6)R Britton (Lara)
2DREAM IT [4]1416329.53(5)B Ennis (Lara)
3DYNA ORION (NSW)[4]6713429.70(5)A Dailly (Anakie)
4SOHO RHYTHM [4]1723629.71(5)A Hyde (Lara)
5AWESOME PROJECT (NSW)[1]1114229.35(4)D Mcdonald (Devon Meadows)
6JERSEY JACK [4]4146429.54(2)J Zammit (Hazelwood North)
7MARCUS JOE [1]1631129.24(4)B Moloney (Marcus Hill)
8CRAWF’S BREAD [3]7211129.37(5)D Crawford (Pearcedale)
Race No. 9Harvey Norman – Springvale9:55 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 715 metres at Sandown park Of $8,225 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,750 2nd: $1,645 3rd: $830.


1DEWANA SIENNA [5]7252542.37(2)M Dewan (Carrum Downs)
2BLINKER’S ON [5]61114FSTDB Ennis (Lara)
3DARBAIN DASHER [5]35343FSTDR Conway (Bunyip)
4REAP THE BENEFIT [5]33571FSTDM Chilcott (Heathcote)
5BECCI LEONE [5]14472NBTM Chilcott (Heathcote)
6PEGGIE [5]13366FSTDP Anderton (Devon Meadows)
7LOOBY LU [5]11376NBTJ Borg (Maryborough)
8ZIPPING MAKKA (NSW)[5]34723FSTDJ Delaroche (Cranbourne North)
9OPTIMUS BART (SA)[5]Res.61614FSHA Debattista (Toolleen)
Race No. 10Bring Your Club To Sandown10:12 PM (VIC time)
Mixed 4/5 event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $8,745 Prizemoney.
1st: $6,120 2nd: $1,750 3rd: $875.


1FRANK FURTER [5]27184FSTDC Schlensog (Anakie)
2ESPECIALLY [4]5113234.36(7)R Clark (Toolleen)
3MYSTIC TWIST [5]57144FSTDM Cauchi (St Leonards)
4FEARLESS BERT [5]24323NBTM Carter (Violet Town)
5KAYO MARCIARNO [4]4231334.59(3)G Neocleous (Yinnar South)
6REBELATION [5]3875834.51(1)M Mallia-magri (Avalon)
7MY BRO FABIO (NSW)[5]42215NBTB Ennis (Lara)
8TARKS NEMESIS (NSW)[4]2171334.29(7)A Langton (Anakie)
9CRACKERJACK BABE [5]Res.2557234.34(2)A Dailly (Anakie)
Race No. PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $7,150 Prizemoney.
1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.


1PETER PETTIGREW [5]2641629.91(4)L Cockerell (Buckley)
2SOUL EATER [5]1342429.70(2)J Maple (Little River)
3BARON BLING [5]2411129.68(7)R Eades (Carrum Downs)
4ZAMBORA POWER (NSW)[5]5814529.83(2)G Whitford (Yarram)
5DYNA NICO (NSW)[5]12421NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
6FEARSOME MINT (NSW)[5]2312830.21(5)M Lloyd (Anakie)
7DYNA FANCY (NSW)[5]6122330.03(8)A Dailly (Anakie)
8TURBO NORRIS [5]5F17429.87(8)J Reynolds (Pearcedale)
9DELTA BOLT (NSW)[5]Res.76713NBTK Bravo (Lovely Banks)
10DUKE BALE (NSW)[5]Res.75622NBTA Dailly (Anakie)

Good Information Can Promote Success

Stewardship matters never seem to go away. At Sandown last Thursday, here is what stewards said about Race 9. “Al Moran (7) crossed to the inside soon after the start checking Peloton Bale (6), All One Size (5) and Ready To Riot (4)”. (Box numbers added).

In fact, Al Moran never got close to Peloton Bale or All One Size and, if it brushed Ready To Riot, the impact was minute and not relevant. In particular, Peloton Bale walked out of the box, as it is prone to do at times, and there was no chance at all for it to get checked by Al Moran, which jumped smartly and went almost straight ahead until reaching the turn.

Sometimes it’s hard to know if we are all on the same planet. Why would stewards write such stuff?

Fortunately, the GRV race results pages and videos are otherwise very informative and easy to view, print or download. But the stewards’ reports can be grossly misleading. We are better off without them, except where they concern injuries and matters which warrant penalties. Even then, sometimes you are better off seeing for yourself.

In contrast to Victoria, race results offered by GRNSW, which now cover four states, are a pain in the butt. Downloading is impossible in practice and printouts are not available as the site serves up only one race at a time. (Experiences may vary slightly, depending on your equipment). Formguides are equally impracticable as they require excessive amounts of paper to print out, contain lots of secondary pieces of information which should be made available elsewhere, and are missing numerous sectional times. Oddly, both SA and WA joined the NSW camp (in Ozchase) when they had far superior formguides in their own systems, particularly in WA.

In Queensland, slated to join the NSW brigade later on, basic results are fairly handy. However, while their videos are probably the best in the business, you have to cover more ground than the early explorers to find them, and then only one race at a time, which is time-consuming. Queensland formguides are rudimentary at best. Apart from missing all interstate sectionals (why?) they have adopted a habit long used by the old deFax guide and the current Recorder to insert an ancient run on the track if no current one is relevant. I have yet to find a six months old formline of any use in predicting a dog’s chances.

Clearly, none of the people responsible for these services have bothered to audit the effectiveness of their work or check how they are viewed by the public. Often we hear claims about the number of hits on their website but nothing about how those inspections are put to use. You could go further – the last time a state authority published any information about public or customer views and attitudes was 20 years ago in Queensland when the then-QGRA had a consultant do such a job for them. Are they all working in the dark?

It does seem so. That is exactly the point I made the other day when discussing the attitude of authorities to their customers, and how they define that group of people. The entire industry has always concentrated the vast majority of its resources on trainers and very little on the needs of the people who pay their wages – the customers. More administration than management.

Totes are no better, which is why they still run a ridiculous product – the Duet – which hardly anyone ever buys, other than a few foolish gamblers. Or why they tell lies about First Four dividends. Or why they have destroyed the integrity of betting pools by jamming too many races into an already overcrowded calendar, hoping to drag more cash out of the same old customers (it’s not working).

In total, it’s like a manufacturer supplying its customers with a fancy piece of equipment and no instructions to go with it. Or a cookbook with a recipe containing no information on amounts or how long to cook it. Or running an election with the names of candidates but nothing on which party they belong to or what their policies are. And so it goes on.

Surely somebody must soon realise that these are some of the reasons that racing is losing its edge and why it has experienced negative growth in breeding and betting over the last 20 years. Greyhounds have been an exception for betting as it has been able to stick more four-legged poker machines into the mix, but that fix has now run out of steam. There is no more room left. Where to now?


Never mind that the world’s leaders are coming to Australia to discuss what the future holds. Isn’t it about time that greyhound bosses took a serious look at why greyhound racing is struggling to get its act together?

Yesterday’s premium Wentworth Park meeting had not a single reserve to start with, and so ended up with six short fields for what has historically been the code’s biggest betting venue. That’s money down the drain. The Meadows had a few more starters but still had three short fields (with two 725m runners carrying with them false times ex handicap races but no note about what advantage they had or about misleading sectional times). Sandown on Thursday started off with a race full of Novice dogs, masquerading as a Grade 5 event. Albion Park’s main meeting of the week led off with the usual two Novice races and four of ten races short of a full field.

There can be no argument that the industry has over-reached. Too many races, too few dogs. Too many short course dogs, too few stayers. Too many mug gamblers, too few punters. Too many unusable betting pools. Too much secrecy. Too many rip-off products. The list goes on. Rumours are around that someone wants to put some research into better track designs, but I want to see the hard cash first. Meantime, $30 million is being invested into new tracks in Perth and Brisbane, both with obvious design faults before they get started. That’s hardly a good way to attract future customers.

Is anyone minding the shop? A stocktake would be a good way to start a program of reform.

Brian Barnsley Receives Lengthy Disqualification In The Rouw Investigation


Mr. Brian Barnsley failed to present the greyhound Rouw free of any prohibited substance for an event at the Cranbourne Greyhound Racing Club on Wednesday, 1 January 2014.


Following advice from Racing Analytical Services Laboratory, the Stewards of Greyhound Racing Victoria conducted an investigation into the results of a post-race urine sample taken from greyhound Rouw at the Cranbourne Greyhound Racing Club meeting held on Wednesday, 1 January 2014.

During the investigation, Stewards received evidence from registered trainer Mr. Brian Barnsley, Mr. Glenn Barnsley (Trainer), Mr. Jason Goldsworthy (Owner), Mr. Paul Zahra (Racing Analytical Services Laboratory) and Dr. Steven Karamatic (Greyhound Racing Industry Veterinary Officer).

After considering the evidence, Stewards charged Mr. Barnsley with a breach of Greyhounds Australasia Rules 83(2) and (3) in that he did fail to present the greyhound Rouw free of any prohibited substance for an event at the Cranbourne Greyhound Racing Club meeting held on Wednesday, 1 January 2014 given that the post-race urine sample taken from the
greyhound indicated the presence of the prohibited substances Amphetamine and Methamphetamine.

Under Rule 47.1 of the Greyhound Racing Victoria Local Rules a breach of GAR83 (2) and (3) constitutes a Serious Offence. As a result, on Wednesday, 9 July 2014 this matter was heard before the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board in the first instance under Greyhound Local Racing Rule 47.3 and Sections 83C(b) and 83M(1) of the Racing Act.

Mr. Brian Barnsley represented himself, with assistance from Mr. Glenn Barnsley.

Mr. Glenn Fish (GRV Chief Steward) represented the Stewards Panel.

Mr. Brian Barnsley pleaded guilty to the charge.

After hearing all the evidence tendered and having regard to GAR83 (2) and (3), the RADB determined that Mr. Barnsley was guilty as charged and disqualified him for 18 months (with 12 months of this penalty suspended for 12 months pending no further breaches of GAR83 during the 12 month period), effective from Wednesday, 9 July 2014.

In assessing penalty, the Board took into account all the evidence and submissions, including the following matters:

(a) Mr. Barnsley’s guilty plea;

(b) The nature of the prohibited substance Amphetamine and Methamphetamine, being category 4 prohibited substances under the GRV guidelines and permanently banned. The Board were satisfied that Mr. Barnsley was not directly involved in any
administration of the prohibited substances and that another person was the likely culprit. However, Mr. Barnsley as the trainer of Rouw bears responsibility under the Rules of greyhound racing for presenting the greyhound for racing drug free.

(c) The general deterrent effect and the need to maintain the integrity of greyhound racing and ensure a level playing field for all participants;

(d) Prior penalties for similar offences;

(e) Mr. Barnsley’s age and good character (as evidenced by his written character references), his clean history and over 50 years as a registered person in the greyhound industry; and

(f) Mr. Barnsley’s community engagement through his volunteer roles in charitable and other organisations over many years.

Acting under GAR83(4), the RADB also disqualified Rouw from Event 2 – Browns Sawdust & Shavings Grade 5 – at the Cranbourne Greyhound Racing Club meeting held on Wednesday, 1 January 2014 and amended the placings as follows:

ARG Opinion:

The Barnsley investigation follows on from the Jason Goldsworthy RADB hearing and his lengthy two year disqualification. ARG’s opinion on this situation is detailed in this prior article relating to the case.

The GRV has made it perfectly clear that accidental administration isn’t acceptable and the lengthy disqualification handed down to someone of Brian Barnsley’s established character is a warning to all other participants.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Greyhound Box Draw For Sandown Park – Sunday, 20 July 2014

Race No. 1Find Us On Facebook2:00 PM (VIC time)
Maiden event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $1,415 Prizemoney.
1st: $990 2nd: $285 3rd: $140.


1ADDICTIVE LOVE [M]2657PNBTP Goold (Monbulk)
2MAVERICK BLONDIE [M]62643FSTDS Bonaccurso (Mount Mercer)
3DYNA BRAINIAC (NSW)[M]32324NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
4QUEEN OF PATONG [M]33422NBTS Ralph (Tooradin)
5COUNTESS JUANITA [M]82262NBTN Boyd (Pearcedale)
6OUR SPOTTY [M]35656NBTG Watts (Lara)
7BLUE RANGER [M]46225NBTJ Roberts (Devon Meadows)
8EMMETT RYKER [M]34361FSHN Boyd (Pearcedale)
Race No. 2Follow Us @sandowndogs2:18 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 No Penalty event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1WOLFBANE MCCABE (QLD)[5]15FSHM Bodycomb (Moe)
2DYNA VILLA (NSW)[5]211FSHJ Hunt (Avalon)
3DUKE BALE (NSW)[5]77562NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
4DARING ESCAPE [5]61488NBTD Jeffries (Anakie)
5WADELOCK BILL [5]11757FSHM Clohesy (Stratford)
6QUIRINUS QUIRREL [5]16154NBTL Cockerell (Buckley)
7SHATTERED ICE [5]78812NBTE Rinaldi (Lethbridge)
8NOAKI LYNX [5]4221FSHG Selkrig (Devon Meadows)
9MIDNIGHT REIGN [5]Res.5566530.00(8)M Marshall (Noble Park)
10BRONCO BALE (NSW)[5]Res.56155FSHA Dailly (Anakie)
Race No. 3Rupertswood Fnc – 30 Years Ht12:35 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Non Penalty Heat event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $2,175 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,525 2nd: $430 3rd: $220.


1MACBURNER [5]43542FSTDR Walsh (Koroit)
2LIGHTNING STORM [5]47154FSHC Hayes (Mill Park)
3YAMBLA MICK [5]71268FSTDJ Delaroche (Cranbourne North)
4DESTINI DUCATI [5]6851134.36(3)J Rinaldi (Lethbridge)
5ECHELONIC ACTION [5]32364NBTR Camilleri (Lara)
6SCANEZ CEE [5]43541FSTDB Divirgilio (Devon Meadows)
7PEGGIE [5]5133634.22(5)P Anderton (Devon Meadows)
8JOSEE [5]22215NBTL Hellmuth (Pearcedale)
9COOL MIKADO [5]Res.74566NBTM Barber (Hoddles Creek)
10KAZAM [5]Res.85468NBTS Ralph (Tooradin)
Race No. 4Pakenham Silverbacks (bitches)2:59 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 No Penalty event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1ADDICTIVE ACTION [5]141530.05(2)P Goold (Monbulk)
2SILK CLUB [5]33872FSHG Hall (Yarragon)
3WHY NOT HEATHER [5]84365NBTW Gray (Wendouree)
4CAZAR ROSE [5]67623FSHR Walsh (Koroit)
5SAY GOODNIGHT [5]62682NBTJ Roberts (Devon Meadows)
6TINA TWO [5]7573129.80(1)M Davis (Altona Green)
7SUZIE SANDERSON [5]14833NBTS Taylor (Keilor East)
8RUN RIGHT BACK [5]16253FSHJ Higgins (Linton)
9POLLY BALE (NSW)[5]Res.861NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
10JADIE BEAR [5]Res.3777529.88(1)S Ralph (Tooradin)
Race No. 5St Johns Old Collegians Fc Ht23:24 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Non Penalty Heat event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $2,175 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,525 2nd: $430 3rd: $220.


1MANBO MAN [5]63187NBTD Geall (Lara)
2WOT PRICE LAURIE [5]64234NBTG Allen (Darnum)
3FUZZY BUZZY [5]2444734.68(2)A Meyer (Hoppers Crossing)
4SARSHA [5]31621FSHS Bonaccurso (Mount Mercer)
5RINASH [5]6163134.68(3)G Laidlay (Devon Meadows)
6TULARE DUST [5]41128FSTDG Rounds (Devon Meadows)
7FRANK FURTER [5]32718FSTDC Schlensog (Anakie)
8VOLKSJAGER BLUE [5]43175NBTP Ryder (Corio)
9COOL MIKADO [5]Res.74566NBTM Barber (Hoddles Creek)
10KAZAM [5]Res.85468NBTS Ralph (Tooradin)
Race No. 6Doveton Cc – Foodworks3:41 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 No Penalty event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1BIG BAD TOM [5]34641NBTC Davis (Altona Green)
2ALLEN WARLOCK (NSW)[5]16327NBTJ Hunt (Avalon)
3DESTINI LOBO [5]7431430.20(6)E Rinaldi (Lethbridge)
4ALLEN KESSEL (NSW)[5]16251NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
5ALPHA LEVA KEATO [5]212F4FSTDR Keating (Longford)
6STARC (NSW)[5]42723NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
7MR. PATONG [5]3357330.16(5)S Ralph (Tooradin)
8BARON BLING [5]4241129.68(7)R Eades (Carrum Downs)
9BLACK TYPHOS (WA)[5]Res.14784FSHM Howe (Tarneit)
10HEEZA BOMB JET (NSW)[5]Res.65265FSHP Krasnaborodkin (Noble Park)
Race No. 7Bramall & Co. – Grv Vic Bred Ht33:59 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Non Penalty Heat event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $2,175 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,525 2nd: $430 3rd: $220.


1JUST DUCAL [5]4631334.53(1)J Roberts (Devon Meadows)
2LEWIS FIELDS [5]31263FSTDT Collins (Lara)
3ZELEMAR KNIGHT [5]6673235.14(2)A Gieschen (Maffra)
4CHASIN MIKADO [5]33774NBTP Jones (Hoddles Creek)
5JESS’ FANTASY [5]16F23FSTDG Selkrig (Devon Meadows)
6LUNAR TOM [5]27171FSTDJ Borg (Maryborough)
7PETER PETTIGREW [5]4264134.72(2)L Cockerell (Buckley)
8WHY NOT WAYNE [5]51235FSTDW Gray (Wendouree)
9COOL MIKADO [5]Res.74566NBTM Barber (Hoddles Creek)
10FLICKERING FLAME [5]Res.68737FSTDM Thomas (Meeniyan)
Race No. 8Upstream4:19 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 No Penalty event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1ALLEN WAKE (NSW)[5]45541NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
2KOFI KAYLAN [5]2434229.60(3)S Toner (Garfield)
3PEPPER FOZZ [5]43825NBTB Fothergill (Numurkah)
4BLUE TO BITS (NSW)[5]87716NBTS Taylor (Keilor East)
5FOOT TAPPER [5]5335329.82(8)A Britton (Lara)
6DEADLY CLEAR [5]7115529.12(5)L Smith (Devon Meadows)
7WOT PRICE DANNY [5]47873NBTG Allen (Darnum)
8AMERICAN SNIPER (NSW)[5]14153FSHM Carter (Violet Town)
9GHOST ROASTER [5]Res.23383NBTG Watts (Lara)
10FIREBALL FURY [5]Res.85657NBTM Wright (Allansford)
Race No. 9Club Challenge (bitches)4:40 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 No Penalty event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1DYNA FANCY (NSW)[5]6761230.03(8)A Dailly (Anakie)
2ONE DEE [5]3152129.62(1)S Taylor (Keilor East)
3LIMBURG LAYNE [5]2786F29.74(5)P Reivers (Lara)
4SMOKING ROSIE [5]8735529.90(4)J Reid (Notting Hill)
5AEROPLANE CINDY (NSW)[5]3441729.80(8)D Murray (Napoleons)
6MISS KIA ORA [5]61115FSHB Ennis (Lara)
7COULTA BETSY (SA)[5]4116129.67(4)G Watts (Lara)
8AMAROO MY GIRL [5]1552229.81(3)C Schembri (Moe South)
9TRANSAM SALLY [5]Res.7267429.92(6)Y Byron (Noble Park)
10JADIE BEAR [5]Res.3777529.88(1)S Ralph (Tooradin)
Race No. 10Berwick Mazda – Grv Vic Bred Ht44:59 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 Non Penalty Heat event over 595 metres at Sandown park Of $2,175 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,525 2nd: $430 3rd: $220.


1FEARLESS BERT [5]32432NBTM Carter (Violet Town)
2AGENT JACK [5]21414FSTDD Hay (Maffra)
3STAR DOLL [5]6631534.59(4)D Murray (Napoleons)
4KIRABILLI GEORGE [5]3534134.83(1)D Drew (Dennington)
5DEWANA SIENNA [5]6725234.69(7)M Dewan (Carrum Downs)
6RUN ON ROSEY [5]21612FSHS Bonaccurso (Mount Mercer)
7DASHA MIKADO [5]62732NBTM Barber (Hoddles Creek)
8HE’S BONZA [5]52213FSTDJ Hunt (Avalon)
9FLICKERING FLAME [5]Res.68737FSTDM Thomas (Meeniyan)
10KAZAM [5]Res.85468NBTS Ralph (Tooradin)
Race No. (bitches)5:17 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 No Penalty event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $1,890 Prizemoney.
1st: $1,325 2nd: $375 3rd: $190.


1STUNNING VIEW [5]2284829.99(5)P Martinovic (Koo Wee Rup)
2FLIPPIN’ GOOD [5]71885NBTS Bonaccurso (Mount Mercer)
3KO KO MIKADO [5]41252NBTP Jones (Hoddles Creek)
4MICK’S LADY [5]57821NBTA Meyer (Hoppers Crossing)
5RAPIDDORE [5]83746NBTS Ralph (Tooradin)
6MISS PENGUIN [5]2671629.85(1)R Neocleous (Hazelwood North)
7RUN ANGEL RUN (NSW)[5]8617129.52(3)P Bartolo (Little River)
8TOTAL SILENCE (NSW)[5]17417NBTD Pattinson (Pearcedale)
9TRANSAM SALLY [5]Res.7267429.92(6)Y Byron (Noble Park)
10POLLY BALE (NSW)[5]Res.861NBTA Dailly (Anakie)

Victoria Admits To A Rocky Future

A while back we pointed out that Greyhound Racing Victoria’s future income was looking a bit questionable, notwithstanding all the publicity about increases in prize money and millions being spent on new tracks and related facilities. The bottom line can be difficult to sort out as the major trend – an easing of tote betting – does not cover online bookmaker activity (which offers smaller commissions) or actions by the state government (grants and changes in taxes and commission sharing amongst codes).

We already know that GRV had done well out of the previous government-inspired alterations to commission shares, which followed the removal of racing income derived from poker machine taxes. However, it seems racing lost more on the swings than it gained on the roundabouts.

That swing appears to be statewide. Racing Victoria chairman Robert Roulston told the Herald Sun “it was looking at a $7 million reduction in its budget for the next racing season”. RV is trying to negotiate a better deal with the government “so that Victoria would remain the No 1 racing state”.

NSW greyhounds are also going down that path since it has had no luck in getting rid of the subsidies it pays to the other two codes under the fixed commission sharing agreement, signed off years ago by a short sighted administration. Balancing that loss by more favourable tax rates is its only hope.

Victoria is also watching closely to see how Racing NSW progresses its effort to force online bookmakers (and presumably Tabcorp) to accept any reasonable bets, particularly Fixed Odds bets, that they have been prone to knock back. However, whether that would make the state more profitable is open to question.

The Victorian issues follow on from the Queensland government’s published claim that its new deal with TattsBet will return perhaps $20 million more to the three codes. But the Minister is under fire because he has not yet said how much each code will get. Apparently, a by-election is in the offing and bad news is therefore deferred. But the troops are not happy.

In any event, a few more dollars in prize money are not likely to outweigh Queensland’s two main problems – a shortage of good dogs (or any dogs), and an uncompetitive tote. The small TattsBet pools are not about to stop fans favouring bigger southern pools or offers from online bookies. It’s not the cream that is the problem but the bread and butter.

When you add in TattsBet’s two other key states (SA and Tasmania), we are now looking at almost every jurisdiction in the country, perhaps except WA, facing challenges to their basic income. Even WA is still living in hope that the government will fund the rest of the new Cannington complex. So far, it has money only for the track itself.

There is no evidence that these trends will not continue, or even worsen. Apart from government belt-tightening, the country’s wagering system is arguably in a mess and is looking at an unknown future. I would defy anyone to describe a likely structure in five years from now. The dominant players are the shareholders of the two totes and the owners of online bookies and Betfair, all of which are strenuously trying to maximise their profits, regardless of the effect on the industry or its main source of income, the punters. What a curious policy! The goose and the golden egg come to mind.

Ideally, all racing authorities would get together to bring pressure to bear on Racing Ministers to introduce major reforms and perhaps to create some consistencies throughout the country. Sadly greyhounds cannot do that as its only national body, Greyhounds Australasia, does not deal with “commercial matters”. Indeed, it cannot even get the states to agree on racing rules. The other codes are not much better off.

Even the Productivity Commission recommended a national approach to the subject of racefield commissions (in its Problem Gambling Report). Yet state versus state jealousies seem to be an impossible barrier.

Racing is therefore in a precarious position as the two main influences on its fortunes are the policies of state governments and those of betting operators. Racing is in charge of not much more than lining up starters. Even then, it is flat out filling fields to suitable levels. At least one in five greyhound races start with empty boxes and a lack of reserves, thereby reducing incentive for exotic betting.

Some commentators claim it would take at least five years to bring about a national betting pool. That’s much too long, given the present state of the art and an unknown future. But that’s just the start. Love them or hate them, it’s the responsibility of state governments to take control of all betting, perhaps via a National Wagering Commission reporting to the Racing Ministers Council. Yes, that’s more bureaucracy but what other options are there?

The system is broken. Now is the time to fix it – and it is urgent.


Last week I suggested that punters should not take less than 4/1 about distance dogs in Melbourne. Alas, they still backed Lunar Jinx into $3.10 and Zipping Rory into $2.80 at Sandown on Thursday. Both lost. The race went to a rank outsider, which plodded home in a pathetic 42.54, nearly 20 lengths outside the record. There was no unusual interference, just inconsistent dogs. Or maybe they were just browned off? Would a long holiday help?

Still in Melbourne (but often elsewhere), the incidence of under-priced favourites is reaching worrying proportions. For example, at The Meadows several tipsters, including the Watchdog, pushed the wares of Bottom Dollar in a Maturity heat and it started at $3.10 or $4.10, depending where you lived. It ran nowhere after an average start but its recent form had been very ordinary, including a win at Wentworth Park in a moderate 30.27. In a smart field like this the numbers suggested it was a 100/1 chance. Its early-year form over shorter trips had been very good but it is futile to bet on what happened six months ago. Warrior King and All Strung Out were also well under the odds. Even My Bro Fabio ($2.50, box 6), which won really well after a slow start, would give you heart failure until it found its way thru the field, and then only because most of the field drifted off on the first turn, leaving the rails open.

No doubt the lack of serious analysis of likely chances is one reason the Fixed Odds people get away with their 130% books.

Breeding Ban Placed On Victorian Greyhound Participants

Chris Constantinou Report:

Stewards on 2 July 2014 conducted an Inquiry into the keeping of greyhounds at the Devon Meadows property belonging to Mr. Constantinou.

Stewards heard evidence from GRV Member Services Manager Mrs. Kate Williams and licensed trainers Mr. Constantinou and Mr. Hill. Stewards also tendered reports from Adam Evans (GRV – Animal Welfare Compliance and Education Officer).

After considering all the evidence, Stewards acting in accordance with GAR15(3), altered the conditions of Mr. Constantinou’s registration –

– No Further breeding of Greyhound litters
– No Transfer of Greyhound Brood Bitches
– No Transfer of ownership of any Greyhounds by Mr. Constantinou unless approved by GRV Stewards.

These alterations will remain in place pending a further kennel inspection to be conducted on or around 16 August, 2014.

Bradley Hill Report:

Stewards on 2 July 2014 conducted an Inquiry into the keeping of greyhounds at the Devon Meadows property belonging to Mr. Hill.

Stewards heard evidence from licensed trainers Mr. Constantinou and Mr. Hill; Stewards also tendered reports from Adam Evans (GRV – Animal Welfare Compliance and Education Officer).

After considering all the evidence, Stewards acting in accordance with GAR15(3), altered the conditions of Mr. Hill’s registration –

– No Further breeding of Greyhound litters
– No Transfer of Greyhound Brood Bitches
– No Transfer of ownership of any Greyhounds by Mr. Hill unless approved by GRV Stewards.

These alterations will remain in place pending a further kennel inspection to be conducted on or around 16 August, 2014.

ARG View:

Since the announcement of the joint animal welfare strategy by the GRV and GRNSW the topic has been a major focus at the GRV. This decision is further evidence that incidents involving animal welfare won’t be tolerated and for that the GRV are to be commended. It’s a focus that can only help the industry long term.

Coonabarabran Secretary Speaks Out Regarding The Club’s Suspension

GRNSW provided the following media release yesterday in regards to the suspension of the Coonabarabran Coursing Club licence for three months.

The Board of Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) has suspended the licence of the Coonabarabran Coursing Club for three months after it conducted a race meeting in March this year without a veterinarian in attendance.

The suspension will take effect from 7 July 2014 and conclude on 7 October 2014. During the term of the suspension, the Coonabarabran Coursing Club will not be allowed to conduct race meetings or trials.

GRNSW requires race clubs to have a veterinarian present at all race meetings to guarantee the welfare of racing greyhounds.

GRNSW Chairman Eve McGregor said the decision to suspend the Coonabarabran club sent a clear message to the greyhound racing industry that GRNSW will not tolerate anything that puts the welfare of greyhounds in jeopardy.

“The requirement to have a veterinarian present at race meetings is a basic standard imposed on all clubs in NSW and there can be no excuse for such a basic requirement not being met,” Ms McGregor said.

“The Board of GRNSW hopes that the Coonabarabran club understands the seriousness of its breach and take measures to ensure it does not happen again.”

ARG approached club Secretary/Treasurer Merle Clarke for comment and received the following statement.

“The Coonabarabran Committee will be appealing the severity of the penalty issued by GRNSW. Board stewards and club stewards are empowered by GRNSW to be in complete control of meetings. It is unfair to penalise clubs, owners/trainers and sponsors when they had no input into the decision made on the 15th of March.”

“To use our club as GRNSW has done as an example to others in extremely unfair. They have created the assumption and inferred that the club was totally responsible for the decision, which is beyond comprehension.”

“I have received calls from many participants expressing their absolute dismay at this imposed penalty.”

Merle went further to explain that in her 14 years of involvement at the club she was only aware of one GRNSW board member to have ever visited the Coonabarabran track, current GRV CEO Adam Wallish.

This raises an obvious question. In the current environment where animal welfare is paramount, as mentioned in the GRNSW media release above, how can regular track inspections not be on the agenda?

If we are going to see Coonabarabran hammered with a three month suspension for not having a vet on track due to animal welfare concerns, surely the safety of tracks around the state should also be of paramount importance.

Only last week we published a story in regards to the track upgrade at Wagga due to safety concerns. This upgrade was something that the Wagga club had been fighting over fifteen years to achieve. One is left scratching their head at how many tracks in NSW would be unsafe for the dogs racing there. Here we have a track in Coonabarabran that hasn’t been inspected in a long time, surely this is an essential part of fair and safe greyhound racing.

One would think our own Bruce Teague would have a field day with this news.

Bendigo Cup Betting Preview

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Race 4 – 425M GRV VBIS Maiden Final – 8:10PM

Eight highly promising speedsters are set to do battle and I think the outside division will dominate the race. I found it very hard to split Kuranda Lass and We’re Off Here, both are unbeaten in there two starts and both ran similar sectionals in qualifying. I have given the edge to We’re Off Here. In the second round of qualifying he exited box six and put on a faultless display and from a similar box tonight I think he can repeat the dose. In his brief career he has shown brilliant box manners and in both rounds of heats he reeled off the fastest second split. With a clean getaway tonight he should be able to burn across and get the job done again.

Kuranda Lass as mentioned earlier ran very similar splits to the top pick and she too has proven to be a very reliable beginner. My only concern tonight is the box draw because in previous weeks she has had the luxury of exiting the pink and the red respectively and that has allowed her to get a clear run in the initial stages. Tonight she has likely favourite Senor Grumpy and our top pick We’re Off Here drawn on her outside and they are both fast early and keen for the rails. If she can get a clear run in the first 30m she should be able to make her presence felt. Senor Grumpy showed explosive speed when scoring a 23.76 heat win a fortnight ago and he obviously must be respected, however his box manners aren’t as good as the other two and he will need to do everything right early.

Top Four: 7 – 5 – 6 – 1

Suggested Bets:

Win bet on We’re Off Here

Trifecta: 5,6,7/5,6,7/1,2,3,5,6,7 ($24 for 100%)


Race 6 – 660M Winter Cup Final – 8:47PM

Really tough race to assess but I think the classy Unix Bale should get the cash. She was unlucky in her heat and has drawn poorly again tonight, but last week was her first try at the 660m trip and I think she will be much better for the run. In her heat she was steady to begin and from there on she was always going to find it difficult to feature, however in previous starts she has proven to be a reliable beginner so if she can get away on terms tonight she will find herself in a much more prominent position initially. If you go back through her form, you will see that she did score at The Meadows in a slick 34.40 in May and I don’t think her rivals tonight are quite up to that standard.

Gambo Girl ended a string of luckless efforts when scoring here last week and she is drawn to feature again. With Loud One and Echelonic Action both expected to show speed, she should get the perfect sit on the leaders and based on last week’s run home time, she will prove very hard to hold out. The only concern with her is that she can find a lot of trouble in her races, so if you put your hard earned on, you will be hoping for a little luck in running. Zipping Maggie and Tyra Giselle are both expected to be well fancied but I think they are a little risky from their wide draws. There appears to be an abundance of early pace in this event and it is likely that they will be posted wide for most of the trip. If you are looking for a value place bet, Dewana Sienna could be the one. She doesn’t like to win races but she is rarely far away in this company, she will be huge odds but is more than capable of running a drum.

Top Four: 6 – 2 – 1 – 4

Suggested Bets:

Win bet on Unix Bale

Place bet on Dewana Sienna

First Four: 1,2,6/1,2,6/4/Field ($30 for 100%)

First Four: 1,2,6/1,2,6/Field/4 ($30 for 100%)

Boxed Quinella: 1,2,4,6 ($6 for 100%)


Race 7 – 425M Group Two Bendigo Cup Final – 9:10PM

There were quite a number of surprises in last week’s heats and it has made tonight’s final a wide open affair. Pippa Shiraz and Senor Socks both have fared well with the box draw, however I think the biggest improver from the heats will be the exciting Luca Neveelk who is aiming to win 11 races on the trot. Last week he was only fair to begin and went to the first marker in just a solid 6.60 and at his best I believe he can go around the 6.50 mark which would be enough to lead this field. Obviously this is his toughest test to date, but the times he has recorded on the provincial circuit in his brief career suggest that he has the quality to win an event like this. With the speedy White Spyro drawn directly outside him, the first 50m is very crucial but I believe he should have sufficient speed to hold her out. You should be able to get around the $4.50 or better and that is great value about a chaser who has won 10 on end.

White Spyro looks to be the danger for mine, she is the only runner in the field who has more speed than Luca Neveelk and her winning time of 23.79 last week was super impressive. She would obviously need to cross and lead to win but if Luca Neveelk happens to miss the kick, then she should be able to cross easily. She will go around at double figures and she may be worth a saver bet. Senor Socks is another exciting chaser who continues to impress, after a slow get away in his heat, he showed a tremendous turn of foot and he soon found himself in front. Obviously he can’t afford to miss the kick tonight but from the pink he will get every chance to feature. Warrior King is another who must be respected, he has the field covered in the class and ability department but his poor box manners have continued to cause him trouble. He is armed with a monster finish and if there is any shuffling up front, expect him to be running over the top of them late.

Top Four: 4 – 5 – 7 – 8

Suggested Bets:

Win bets on Luca Neveelk and White Spyro

First Four: 4,5,8/1,4,5,8/7/Field ($45 for 100%)

First Four: 4,5,8/1,4,5,8/Field/7 ($45 for 100%)


Race 8 – 425M Free For All – 9:28PM

The last leg of the quaddie sees three speedsters do battle. I expect Matt’s Entity, Ferly Reign and the up and coming Universal Size all to be vying for the early lead and the pressure up front will be intense. Based on last week’s sectionals I think Matt’s Entity should be the one who wins the speed battle and if he does that should see him snag the prize. He was a tad disappointing in his cup heat as he appeared to stop quickly in the straight, however he has won four of seven over this journey and he does have a breathtaking 23.57 PB to his credit. He meets a quality line-up here so you might be able to get around the $2.80 mark which is good shopping.

Ferly Reign has been a class act for quite a while now and her 26.50 Bulli win in May suggests that she still has plenty to give. Surprisingly she was made a reserve in lasts week’s heats and unfortunately she didn’t gain a run which means it has been three weeks since her last race, so she should be nice and fresh for this. Universal Size is going to be well supported and he has shown that he is going to be a great short course speedster in the future, however I don’t think he is quite up to Matt’s Entity at present and from the pink draw he may find himself posted wide for most of the trip. Tyronimo and Leesa Benz are two chasers which must be included in your exotic bets, Tyronimo will be steaming home late, whilst Leesa Benz has a great turn of foot from the 30m to the 200m mark and that should allow her to be in contention for most of the trip.

Top Four: 3 – 2 – 1 – 7

Suggested Bets:

Unleash on Matt’s Entity

Trifecta: 3/1,2,7/Field ($18 for 100%)

First Four: 2,3,7/2,3,7/1/Field ($30 for 100%)

First Four: 2,3,7/2,3,7/Field/1 ($30 for 100%)


Best Bet:
Matt’s Entity

Best Roughie:
White Spyro

Nockabout Aussie Appeal Dismissed – What’s Your Verdict?

Offence: The greyhound Nockabout Aussie did fail to pursue the lure with due commitment at an event by reason of injury.

Report: The GRV RADB received an Appeal lodged by Mr. Peter Akathiotis against a decision handed down by the Greyhound Racing Victoria Stewards at Sandown on Thursday, 26 June 2014.

The Stewards determined, under the provisions of Greyhounds Australasia Rule 69 B(1)(a), that the greyhound ‘Nockabout Aussie’ failed to pursue the lure with due commitment by reason of injury during Event at Sandown on Thursday, 26 June 2014. Subsequently, under GAR 69 B(1)(a), Nockabout Aussie was ordered to undergo a satisfactory trial pursuant to GAR72.

Mr. Peter Akathiotis represented himself at the RADB hearing.

Mr. Carl Scott (GRV Steward) represented the Stewards Panel.

After hearing all the evidence tendered, the RADB determined that the greyhound Nockabout Aussie did fail to pursue the lure with due commitment by reason of injury and the appeal was dismissed. The nature of the greyhound’s injury is not a relevant issue under GAR 69 B(1)(a).

ARG’s Opinion:

Nockabout Aussie an extremely talented dog that has flown around The Meadows in 29.83 and won in excess of $50,000 in prizemoney. This performance wasn’t one of his best. You can see that he eases significantly in the home straight the first time and also down the back when disappointed for an inside run. The video below will give you the chance to make up your own mind.

Nockabout Aussie – Box Eight


Vision courtesy of

Changing Of The Guard In Bendigo Cup Heats

For the past eighteen months Victorian Country Cups have been dominated by the magnificent sprinting trio Paw Licking, Ronan Izmir and Black Magic Opal however with two retired and the other on the sidelines the time is right for an emerging star to step up to the next level and the TAB Bendigo Cup to be run next Friday night may just produce that runner.

After mixed fortunes for some of the fancied pre post runners in the heats an intriguing final has been compiled for the 425m event worth $45,000 to the winner.

One of Victoria’s most promising up and coming sprinters Luca Neveelk could not have been more impressive in a determined heat win clocking a slick 23.87 however he must contend with an awkward box four draw in the final if he is to claim his first black type trophy.

Luca Neveelk’s victory took his record to twelve wins from just thirteen career starts and he could not have been more impressive after having to work hard in the early stages to gain clear galloping room before proving far too strong for the smart Universal Size in the run to the line.

The fastest heat time was recorded in the eighth and final heat when Zipping Snoopy uncharacteristically exploded out of the boxes and clocked slick sections en route to an effortless 23.68 victory and like Luca Neveelk he will carry the same rug in the final as he did in the heat – the white.

Coincidentally four of the eight finalists will line up in the final carrying the identical rug colour to their heats after Warrior King and Senor Socks drew seven and eight respectively in both heats and final.

Warrior King proved too strong for the free rolling Matt’s Entity and Top Secret over the concluding stages of his heat when he clocked 23.84 while Senor Socks looks ideally drawn out wide after using the eight alley to perfection registering 24.06 in his run off.

Senor Socks is one of two finalists for trainer Robert Britton who will rug up the “wing” runners with Pippa Shiraz, a 24.07 heat winner drawing nicely in box one.

Bendigo track specialist Flying Bolt showed a glimpse of his old form when running down the highly talented and odds on favourite Harry Keeping in 23.92 and he will start from box two in the final.

Recent Wagga Cup winner White Spyro never gave his more fancied opposition a chance when he flew the lids and ran away with a 23.78 heat win from box eight however he moves to box five for the final and Elite Devil moves from the suitable inside draw of box two where he saluted in 23.85 to a tough box six draw.

The Group 2 TAB Bendigo Cup final will be race seven on Friday night at 9.10pm and will highlight a card of racing that includes the $10,000 to the winner 3BO FM 93.5 Winter Cup final over 660m, the GRV VBIS Maiden Series final over 425m ($7,500 to the winner) and the Bendigo Advertiser Super GOBIS final over 500m.

Racing on Friday night commences at 7.10pm.


TAB Confirms It Takes Bets After The Jump

A friend of mine that loves a punt relayed this tale to me last night at dinner. I respect this bloke and have no reason to doubt him.

At Geelong dogs on a Monday last week he asked the TAB for $700 on Hades Meteor at $2.70 fixed over the internet. The bet was requested 30 seconds or so before the race was due to commence and as is the “norm” now, winning punters requests are referred to a trader to be accepted or part accepted or totally declined. Basically your pending bet “keeps spinning” until the decision is made. We all hate it, but recognise this as part of the current landscape, a landscape with a definite bias toward the bookie.

The decision on my mates bet was not made as the lure moved, nor was it made as the lids rose. His bet was accepted seven seconds after boxrise (a third of the way through the race). It was apparent that Hades Meteor was not going to win at this stage of the race. This is a shoddy business practice Supertab and it gets worse, much worse.

Naturally my mate was upset by what he called “thievery”, and wished to discuss his feelings with the TAB. He got a call back from the Platinum Account Manager/Representative. My mate has a Platinum Account so we know he likes to bet, and he’s good at it.

He explained what had happened and the response was extremely disturbing.

The TAB representative basically informed my mate that they have rules that allow them to accept/partially accept or decline bets after the green light. “How can that be?”, my mate asked, fully aware that we do not have “in-play” betting here.

“They are the rules”, was the reply.

I feel sorry for my mate as he did his $700 cold, but my real concerns are as follows:

1. Who wrote these rules?
2. If the bet is accepted in the run, surely that would count as in-play?
3. If they can accept bets after the green light, how long after. Perhaps they have the power to wait until the race is resulted before making their decision. What exactly are the rules?
4. Whose best interest do these rules best represent?
5. How consistently are the rules applied?
6. Do these same rules apply to the major corporate bookmakers, such as Sportsbet and Sportingbet?

If the rules do exist as we were explained then why do we bother with integrity officers at Racing Clubs etc. There is no integrity that can be salvaged from this sort of grubby business practice.

My mate intends to discuss this with the Racing Minister and I hope he goes right on with it.

ARG took this punters case to the TAB and the Platinum VIP Team to find the answers to the many issues raised by this situation.

While we couldn’t get confirmation on a number of points, we were able to get confirmation that bets are allowed to be accepted after the jump in Fixed Odds markets, and that the trader will use their discretion as to how far in the race to accept the bet. In this case the TAB Platinum VIP Team maintain that they felt the greyhound in question was in a winning position when the bet was taken. Their opinion is the bet was accepted while the greyhound was contesting the lead on the rail.

The TAB Platinum VIP Team member confirmed that they will often decline bets if after the jump it is clear the greyhound cannot win. However, it was always a fine judgement call because if the dog wins and the bet is declined they cop it and if it loses after the bet is accepted they cop it.

The easiest way to fix this would be to ban all action either way after the jump. This is why the green light was introduced, to give traders and the TAB enough time to close the market. It is a situation of damned if you do and damned if you don’t, which is unfair on all parties involved.

Officially we were referred to the TAB legal team, who give us this comment.

“It is not appropriate to publicly comment on individual customers. TAB categorically rejects any assertion that it accepts or rejects fixed odds bets based on the way runners commence in a race. Any bet accepted is done so in good faith. The betting rules, approved by State gambling regulators, do permit wagering operators to accept fixed odds bets up to the conclusion of the event.”

Hades Meteor – Box One

Video Courtesy Of GRV

Plenty Of Margin To Wow The Fans

On 9 June in a lowly maiden event run over 520 metres at Sale, a black speedster having only his second start in a race absolutely blew the opposition away in scoring by the very precise margin of 32.81 lengths. The question was soon being asked: is this some kind of record winning margin?

Mr. Wow (Bekim Bale x Sweet Stephi), trained by Des Dooley, exited box eight at a rate of knots and was soon a long way in front. He was aided by trouble in the chasing pack, but almost certainly would still have won by a huge margin.

Given the relatively poor long-term record keeping across the sport, there is no definitive answer as to whether this is officially the widest winning margin of all time. I am aware of two races where the margin is indeed greater.

The first of these took place in a race over 550 yards (503 metres) at Young in August 1957. A greyhound named Sky Jet was opposed by just one other runner in a heat of the Harold Park Classic (now the Vic Peters Memorial Classic). In those days, greyhounds would qualify at various GBOTA-controlled venues and be drawn into the semi-finals later run at Harold Park. Sky Jet demoralized his opponent, winning by an official 35 lengths and running 29.9, a new track record. That time was recognized as the new standard, since the rule requiring a minimum of four starters in a race to constitute a track record had yet to be made.

Three decades later and the up-and-coming stayer Shady City contested a 722-metres race at Richmond on 16 January 1987. The Bob Littlefield-trained brindle bitch was having only her ninth race start, and first over a distance beyond 620 metres. Shady City made light work of her opposition as she careered away to win by 35 lengths, running 42.88 to set a new track record.

A week later she won again at Richmond, but this time only by 15 lengths to take her career record to five wins from 10 starts. The closest any runner had come to her in those five victories was nine lengths. When Shady City won a race, she made sure to really win it. Of course Shady City became famous for her match race with the great Bold Trease at Harold Park in June 1987. She defeated an underdone Bold Trease by three lengths in that event.

I would hazard a guess that Mr Wow’s 32.81 lengths winning margin is probably the record for a maiden win at a TAB-class meeting. The closest maiden wins I am aware of to this margin are those of Spoken Joe, who won his maiden at Moss Vale (non-TAB) in September 1997 by 27 lengths; Mask Of Galaxy, who scored a maiden win at Traralgon in December 2005 by 23.75 lengths, and Mr Wow’s sire Bekim Bale, who won a maiden at Sandown in November 2011 by 21.75 lengths.

Mr. Wow’s 32.81 Length Win

Video Courtesy Of GRV

Ian Rilen Receives Suspension And Fine For Threatening GRV CEO


Making a threat towards Mr. Adam Wallish Chief Executive Officer of Greyhound Racing Victoria, being a member of the Controlling Body in a telephone conversation made on 11 March 2014 to the office of Racing Integrity Commissioner.


Following an Inquiry into the circumstances of a telephone conversation between Mr. Ian Rilen and the Office of the Racing Integrity Commissioner, the Stewards of Greyhound Racing Victoria conducted an investigation.

During the investigation, Stewards heard evidence from Mr. Ian Rilen (Attendant) and the Office of the Racing Integrity Commissioner.

After considering the evidence, Stewards charged Ms. Ian Rilen with a breach of GAR86 (g) in that being a licensed attendant and having official duties in relation to greyhound racing, Mr. Ian Rilen did make a threat towards Mr. Adam Wallish Chief Executive Officer of Greyhound Racing Victoria, being a member of the Controlling Body in a telephone conversation made on 11 March 2014 to the office of the Racing Integrity Commissioner.

Under Rule 47.1 of the Greyhound Racing Victoria Local Rules, a breach of GAR86 (g) constitutes a Serious Offence. As a result, on Tuesday, 24 June 2014 this matter was heard before the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board in the first instance under Greyhound Racing Victoria Local Rule 47.3 and Sections 83C(b) and 83M of the Racing Act.

Mr. Ian Rilen did not appear at the hearing. The RADB entered a ‘not guilty’ plea on his behalf and conducted the hearing in his absence pursuant to section 83 (n) of the Racing Act 1958.

Mr. Glenn Fish (GRV Chief Steward) represented the Stewards Panel.

After hearing all the evidence tendered the RADB determined that Mr. Ian Rilen was guilty of making a threat to Chief Executive Officer Mr. Adam Wallish, contrary to GAR 86 (g).

Mr. Rilen was fined the sum of $350 and suspended for one month, effective from midnight on 24 June 2014.

In assessing penalty, the Board took into account all the evidence and submissions, including the following matters:

(a) The nature and manner of the threats made to Mr. Wallish;
(b) The need to maintain the integrity of greyhound racing;
(c) Prior penalties for similar offences;

Accidental Administration Of Prohibited Substances Won’t Work As A Defence

A dog testing positive because of “accidental administering” is hardly a new occurrence. Back in 2009 a precedence was formed in the case involving David Righetti, who was handed an 18 month disqualification after the Dale Walker owned Thump Boxer returned a positive swab to d-amphetamine after his 20th December 2008 720m 5th grade win at Wentworth Park.

Righetti appealed the decision, based around the fact that following the race several people who had been drinking and claimed to be part owners of the dog touched and patted Thump Boxer and shook Righetti’s hand, which in turn he then touched the greyhound with. It was claimed that the drug could have been absorbed if someone had a small amount of it on his hands and allowed the dog’s mouth to have come into contact with them.

The appeal was upheld and the disqualification rescinded.

Michael Hooper was suspended only a matter of weeks ago for a positive swab containing caffeine. The reason used in this investigation was that Hooper had accidentally knocked a drink containing caffeine from its position in his vehicle, and it was his belief that the greyhound had consumed some of the drink at that time.

Then this week we saw Jason Goldsworthy receive a two year disqualification after smoking methamphetamine in the kennel address of Brian Barnsley, whilst the greyhound Rouw was present.

The GRV and GRNSW are very clear on their stance to these “accidental positives”.

Glen Canty – General Manager – Integrity, Racing and Welfare at Greyhound Racing Victoria had the following to say:

“It is the responsibility of the primary carer of a greyhound to ensure that all measures are taken to avoid a greyhound being administered, whether accidentally or not, a prohibited substance.”

“GRV encourage trainers within the sport to take care to avoid exposing their greyhounds to people or substances that could potentially cause them harm.”

Bill Fanning – GRNSW General Manager, Integrity added:

“The prohibited substance rules are absolute offences in the sense that the mere presence in a greyhound constitutes an offence, no matter how that substance entered into a greyhound’s system.”

“GRNSW encourages trainers to take measures to ensure their greyhounds are not exposed to prohibited substances.”

This will pose a problem for Brian Barnsley when he fronts the RADB on the 9th of July. Although he didn’t administer the drugs himself, he has accidentally seen a greyhound under his care exposed to a drug.

As animal welfare and drug issues in the sport continue to be a primary focus for the industry, the excuses of 2009 won’t work in 2014.

Trainers need to be mindful that all actions have consequences and that they can’t play the “blame game” when it comes to alleged accidental administration of prohibited substances to greyhounds under their care. Recent cases have shown that trainers will wear the blame and the excuse can’t be used as a defence.

Signs Of The Times

In a remarkable move, Racing Victoria is set to increase Saturday thoroughbred races from eight to nine and reduce the gap between races to 35 minutes. The aim is simply to bring in more cash. It says it will provide “more opportunities” to owners but you can forget that – it is the dollars that count.

While this has no direct effect on greyhound racing, it is consistent with the pattern being pushed by Tabcorp/SKY to ram more races into every 24 hour period, regardless of any “unintended consequences”, of which there are plenty. That’s why we are seeing all sorts of strange French and Swedish trots and oddball gallops from South Africa (a country which bans greyhound racing), to be followed before long by American races, all of which will contain unknown runners at unknown tracks. These are the classic “four-legged poker machines” which Tabcorp favours to repair its ailing tote business.

Some of these do directly impact on greyhound turnover – the South African gallops in particular, so it’s not hard to see that the clear and distinct priorities of betting operators are, first, more turnover to please their shareholders and, a distant second, progressing the Australian racing industry. They are happening on top of an already overcrowded local program which is splitting the race by race betting chunks into smaller and less usable pieces.

Unfortunately, greyhound racing itself has assisted the trend, starting mainly in 2010, when extra meetings were added to an already busy Saturday night. The immediate result was a reduction in turnover on the two biggest betting attractions in the country – Wentworth Park and The Meadows greyhound meetings – which continues to this day. Their volumes are still usable for betting purposes, but only just, and only in the state of origin, especially with more turnover going across to corporate bookmakers. All of which reduces the integrity of the trend-setting TAB prices. Other than the big two, pools of $10,000 or so are the best you can hope for. So don’t put more than $10 on your Quinella choice as you will then be buying back your own money.

To rub salt into the wound, last Saturday night GRV put on an all-maiden meeting at Bendigo to do battle with prime greyhound and harness races. What sort of future does that promise? What were they thinking?

Maybe one fresh idea might come from other sports. Rugby Union is about to get a strong proposal from a group of businessmen (also supporters of the code) to buy up the NSW Waratahs and take them to greater heights. Clubs in Rugby League have already gone down that road – Brisbane, Newcastle and Melbourne. Many others in all codes are effectively controlled by related social clubs anyway.

Maybe a better plan would be to privatise the entire greyhound code, just as happened with the TABs, and gain the weapons to fight fire with fire. Alternatively, with the benefit of hindsight, it is plain that governments would have achieved better results by retaining ownership of the totes and selling off all the codes. If you have to have a monopoly, far better to have the government handle it, thereby offering the opportunity for the public to have a stronger voice. Or any voice, actually.


Day of the Week

At Wenty, pools on Friday night are often shading those on Saturday, although the class of fields on the latter must be a good 30% better. Only the Peter Mossman final broke the pattern with $28,295 on the NSW Win tote. GRNSW is to shift half the Friday dates to provincial tracks in the coming year. Will they do as well? Doubtful.

Who Are Those Guys?

Sisco Rage (WPK R9) was sent out as an extraordinary $2.40 favourite from box 8. Who on earth could have done that, other than die-hard Darren McDonald supporters? It had no special form to speak of, its last good run being back in April when it won a 500m race at Bendigo. It has generally done better from the inside, too. I made it a 20/1 chance and it ran a mediocre 2.5 lengths to a slow 30.34 after coming out stone motherless last and then crossing to the rail. It finished in 2nd place only because of huge disruptions on the first turn.

Not the Real Reason

Notable at Wenty on Saturday were the runs of Keybow (R3) and Lochinvar Impact (R4). Both had box 8, both were favourites, both began poorly, both put their paw on the accelerator and whizzed around the field to lead in the back straight. Tops dogs? Well, yes, although Lochinvar Impact was pipped on the post, but the reason they were able to do that was not just due to their abilities but because the inside division bunched up, slowed down and therefore made space for outside dogs. It’s the nature of that awful run to and around the turn. Many others have done likewise. Anyone for a track re-build?

Clerical Error

Still at Wenty, how is it possible to publish race results with every sectional time wrong (R2, Saturday)? It happens every so often in Victoria, too. Does nobody actually look at these things before they send them off?

And Still No Change

Tasmania continues to tell lies by deliberately posting sectional times against the wrong dogs, while Tabcorp and Tattsbet continue to publish imaginary First Four dividends. When will the truth come out?

Stayers continue to take turns in winning and recording times ranging from ordinary to poor – the latest a miserable 42.48 by Zipping Joe at Sandown last Thursday (record 41.17 by Miata) beating dogs that have previously run much faster. I wonder if trainers have ever thought of giving their charges a month off to roam the paddock and freshen up. Horses and humans do it all the time but not greyhounds, it seems.

And we still have four states, soon to be five, where you are unable to print out a decent copy of the race results – all of which are in the care of GRNSW. Formguides are almost as inaccessible.

Error Firmed Up

The latest plans issued by RWWA and GWA confirm that its Cannington replacement will have a bend start for 600m races. This continues the muddled thinking present in virtually all other Australian clubs to produce designs which make life even more difficult for dogs and punters. Plans for the new track at Logan in Queensland do likewise. Together, that’s around $30 million of punters’ cash being spent badly.

But here’s a suggestion; put all track design in the hands of an experienced jockey. There is no way one of them would make a racing animal suffer a start like that.

First It’s The Box Draw, Everything Else Falls In Behind

Next time you think it’s tough finding a winner or two, think about how it must have been for punters at the old Harold Park circuit in the period when 10 runners would line up for a race.

I don’t know precisely when Harold Park dropped to eight-dog fields, although it appears to have been around 1960, or a little earlier. Prior to this, fields were a maximum of 10 runners. What’s interesting is that despite the passage of 60 or more years, some things really don’t change when it comes to which boxes tend to dominate.

In a brief chart published in the Sydney Morning Herald in April 1954, a list of winning box numbers from Harold Park showed there had been 201 races run from January to the end of March. Runners exiting box one registered 36 wins, or 17.91 percent, while box two notched 31 wins and box three 32 wins. The wins then dropped away dramatically with box five next best at 20 victories, box four 16, box nine 14 and boxes six, seven, eight, and 10 with 13 wins apiece.

A couple of weeks earlier, the Herald had published the results of 190 races run at Wentworth Park. As with today, races at Wentworth Park only ever consisted of a maximum of eight starters. Box one dominated with 48 wins (a massive 25.26 percent), ahead of box three with 31 wins and box two with 29. Box four won 22 races, ahead of box eight with 21 while box five had 14 (with one dead-heat), box six 14, and box seven just 10 (with one dead-heat).

Basically, the inside three alleys won almost 57 percent of races. At Harold Park in the same period, the inside three boxes picked up 49 percent of events run.

By way of comparison, I looked up the current situation regarding winning box numbers at Wentworth Park (via thedogs website). According to their statistics, box one has recorded 3,887 wins, box two 3,152 and box three 2,598. It doesn’t say what period the figures cover, but given there are 21,129 races it must be the period since the beginning of the loam track back in 1992. So, boxes one, two and three have won 9,637 races between them in that time, or over 45 percent.

By way of further comparison, I looked at The Meadows box stats for 525 metre races, via the GRV website. They only have the past 12 months, but from 926 races box one notched 188 wins (20.3 percent), ahead of box two with 156 and box three with 125 wins. So, the inside three alleys have snared 469 of the 926 races, or a whopping 50.6 percent.

Box six, almost universally, comes out with the worst numbers (which, in my opinion, always adds further lustre to the grand career of Rapid Journey, who raced five times out of that alley for five wins; but that’s another story).

Note what I wrote earlier regarding Harold Park and Wentworth Park, 60 years ago. The numbers haven’t moved much with the passage of time, whether it is a grass one-turn horseshoe track with long straights and 10 starters like the old Harold Park, a tight grass circuit like Wentworth Park used to be, or a loam track such as The Meadows. That box draw remains the single most important element in the equation for most punters, owners, and trainers.

Robert Camilleri Fined And Disqualified On Two Charges

Offences Charged:

(1) GAR86(d) – Mr. Camilleri, being a trainer having official duties in relation to greyhound racing, did make a false or misleading statement on 5 December 2013 regarding Hydrocortisone in the form of Hysone 20mg tablets to Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) stewards Mr. Glenn Fish and Mr. Brayden Jinks and GRV Industry Veterinary Officer Dr. Steven Karamatic during the course of an investigation regarding a swab irregularity taken from the greyhound ‘Luxurious’ on 11 August 2013, in that he denied knowing the nature of the substance Hydrocortisone in the form of Hysone 20mg tablets that was being administered to Greyhounds trained by Mr. Graeme Bate.

(2) GAR86(o) – Mr. Camilleri, in that between on or about 11 August 2012 and 23 October 2013 he did administer or cause to be administered the prohibited substance Hydrocortisone in the form of Hysone 20mg tablets to Greyhounds trained by Mr. Peter Hunt without his knowledge or permission, being conduct which in the opinion of stewards is negligent, improper or constitutes misconduct.


General Following advice from Racing Analytical Services Laboratory, the Stewards of Greyhound Racing Victoria conducted an investigation into the results of a pre-race urine sample taken from greyhound ‘Luxurious’ at the Sale Greyhound Racing Club meeting held on Sunday, 11 August 2013.

During the investigation, Stewards received evidence from registered trainer Mr. Graeme Bate, Mrs. Beverley Bate (Owner), Mr. Joe Briffa (Trainer), Mr. Robert Camilleri (Trainer), Ms. Amy Cole (Trainer), Ms. Jenny Hunt (Trainer), Mr. Leon Harris (Handler), Ms. Michelle Mallia-Magri (Trainer), Mr. Chris Falcke (Department of Health), Wendy Fasoli (Trainer) and received statements from Dr. Alastair Smith (Sandown Veterinary Clinic), Mr. Paul Zahra (Racing Analytical Services Laboratory), Dr. Steven Karamatic (Greyhound Racing Industry Veterinary Officer), Mr. Glenn Fish (Chief Steward) and Mr. Ron Matthews (Steward).

After considering the evidence, Stewards charged Mr. Camilleri with a breach of Greyhounds Australasia Rules GAR86 (d) and GAR86 (o) as indicated in changes (1) and (2) above.

Under Rule 47.1 of the Greyhound Racing Victoria Local Rules these charges constitute Serious Offences. As a result, on Tuesday, 10 June 2014 this matter was heard before the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board in the first instance under Greyhound Local Racing Rule 47.3 and Sections 83C(b) and 83M(1) of the Racing Act.

Mr. Robert Camilleri represented himself.

Mr. Robert Camilleri pleaded not guilty to both charges.

Mr. Paul Holdenson QC assisted by Mr. Patrick Considine (Corrs Chambers Westgarth) represented the Stewards Panel.

After hearing all the evidence tendered and having regard to GAR86 (d) and GAR86 (o), the RADB determined that:

(a) in relation to charge (1), Mr. Camilleri was guilty as charged and was fined $500 and disqualified for 3 months; and

(b) in relation to charge (2), Mr. Camilleri was guilty as charged and he was fined $500 and disqualified for 3 months (to commence after the disqualification for charge 1 has been served and wholly suspended for 18 months).

The RADB’s reasons for their decisions were as follows:

Charge 1 – GAR 86(d)

Evidence given by all the parties has been reviewed. As noted by the Stewards, there are inconsistencies in the evidence. Mr. Camilleri claimed at the Stewards Inquiry on 5 December 2013 and at the hearing before us on 26 May 2014 that he didn’t know that the “little white tablets” were Hysone 20mg tablets or that they contained Hydrocortisone; he said he believed they were anti-cramp tablets to be given to those greyhounds who were identified by Mr. Graeme Bate as bad crampers. Mr. Camilleri also claimed that he originally got the tablets from Mr. Bate in a little white container with no label on it, or with the label scratched off, which he kept to prevent the tablets from getting wet. In this regard, his evidence was not confined to the seven loose tablets left on a table at Mr. Bate’s kennels when Stewards arrived to notify Mr. Bate of the Gunda Bale positive swab on 10 May 2013. Mr. Camilleri said that he had used the little white tablets for a couple of years, and had even given four of these tablets to his own racing greyhounds during this period. Mr. Bate said in his evidence that he didn’t know Mr. Camilleri had done this.

From the evidence, the Board is of the view that it is highly unlikely that as at 5 December 2013, Mr. Camilleri did not know that the little white tablets were Hysone 20mg and that they contained Hydrocortisone. The Board notes the following:

1. The tablets were imprinted “H20″.

2. Mr. Camilleri has been a registered greyhound trainer since 1995 and a public trainer for most of this time. While working and residing at Mr. Bate’s property for six years, he has trained a small number of greyhounds and used the little white tablets on his greyhounds on four occasions. It is difficult to believe he would do that not knowing what the tablets really were.

3. Ms. Amy Cole, who was responsible for looking after one of the sheds at the Bate property during the time that Mr. Camilleri was there, knew that Hysone tablets were being used at the Bate property in 2012 as, according to the evidence of Ms. Michelle Mallia-Magri, another greyhound trainer for whom Amy worked for a short time, Amy suggested Michelle try them on her greyhounds. It would seem very surprising if others working at the Bate property, particularly Mr. Camilleri and Mr. Joe Briffa (both experienced trainers in their own right and in charge of the Bate operations when Mr Bate was not there) did not know at least at a similar time to Ms. Cole of the use of the Hysone tablets there.

4. Mr. Bate was notified by GRV Stewards on 24 October 2013 that a swab taken from the greyhound “Luxurious” at the Sale Greyhound Racing Club meeting on 11 August 2013 had shown the presence of the prohibited substance free Hydrocortisone at an unusual or abnormal amount of an endogenous substance. At the time of the notification Mr. Camilleri was present and telephoned Mr. Bate to inform him of the Stewards’ visit and Mr. Bate subsequently arrived and talked with the Stewards. This positive swab probably arose because, at the time of the notification of Gunda Bale positive swab, Stewards took one of the seven loose tablets which Dr. Steven Karamatic (GRV Veterinary Officer and present with the Stewards at that visit) found on a table at the Bate kennels, and took it to Racing Analytical Services Ltd on 13 May 2013 for analysis. RASL confirmed that the tablet contained Hydrocortisone (Refer witness statement of Dr Steven Karamatic). Mr. Bate said in his interview with Stewards on 24 October 2013 that he had thrown away all the remaining Hysone tablets because Stewards were constantly swabbing his dogs, so he knew Stewards “must have been looking for levels” and he stopped using them. Even if Mr. Camilleri did not know up until then what the “little white tablets” were (which we doubt), it is difficult to believe that he would not have been told or at least noticed that there was a change in Mr. Bate’s medication regime (that is, no more “little white tablets”) and to enquire as to the reason. Mr. Bate’s evidence on 10 December 2013 states that he didn’t tell Joe (Briffa) and Rob (Camilleri) initially, but “since this (presumably the Luxurious swab result), naturally Joe and Rob found out (page 54). Mrs. Bate was even more forthright in her second interview with Stewards on 24 February 2014 when she said that Rob and Joe knew what the (little white) tablets were.

In his interviews on 5 December 2013 and before this hearing on 26 May 2014, Mr. Camilleri denied any knowledge of what the little white tablets were. They were to be used, at Mr. Bate’s direction, for those dogs which were bad crampers. Mr. Camilleri said he knew nothing more about them. The particulars of charge 1 require the Board, on the Briginshaw standard, to be comfortably satisfied that on 5 December 2013, Mr. Camilleri knew “the nature of the substance Hydrocortisone in the form of Hysone 20mg tablets being administered to greyhounds trained by Mr. Graeme Bate”. Even accepting that Mr. Camilleri did not know that the little white tablets were Hysone 20mg and that they contained Hydrocortisone (and this is somewhat of a stretch given other evidence), we are comfortably satisfied that he would have known this on 5 December 2013. As an experienced public trainer with his own greyhounds, it seems to defy common sense to believe that he did not know these things by this time. His statements and his actions (or lack of obvious enquiry) may have been guided by his loyalty to Mr. Bate and his fellow workers. Indeed, all of those people who gave evidence in early December 2013, maintained a similar line of denying knowledge of what the little white tablet was. But even knowing that it was an additional tablet for the bad crampers (whereas the Pharma Mag tablets were for the “ordinary” crampers and the Pharma Mag name was always used) and then using these tablets for his own greyhounds should have put Mr. Camilleri in a position of finding out for himself what the tablets were and what was in them. We believe any reasonable trainer in Mr. Camilleri’s position would have done so. We also note that Mr. Briffa and Ms. Cole, who were both charged with a similar offence to Mr. Camilleri and who denied knowledge of what the little white tablet was in their interviews with the Stewards in December 2013, pleaded guilty to their respective charges before this Board. Therefore it is almost unbelievably strange that given his role in Mr. Bate’s operations, it was only Mr. Camilleri who did not at 5 December 2013 know about the Hysone tablets and that they contained Hydrocortisone.

The Board noted that in the course of submissions made by Mr. Camilleri after delivery of this finding that he conceded that when interviewed by the Stewards on 5 December 2013 he was aware of the nature of the substance Hydrocortisone and the 20 mg Hysone tablets and had been so aware since about 24 October 2013.

The Board finds Mr. Camilleri guilty on charge 1.

Charge 2 – GAR 86(o)

If we accepted Mr. Camilleri’s claims on charge 1, then administering the little white tablets to greyhounds trained by Mr. Peter Hunt without his knowledge or permission may be even more negligent or improper than it might otherwise be. Mr. Camilleri claimed that he was only guilty of what Mr. Bate directed. In his mind, given the family relationship (Mr Hunt being Mrs. Bate’s son), Mr Hunt’s dogs were Mr Bate’s dogs – part of the overall Bate kennel operations. Nevertheless Mr. Camilleri is an experienced public trainer who knew of Mr Hunt’s illness and he should have enquired further as to Mr Hunt’s knowledge or permission to the administration of the tablets. Otherwise he was exposing Mr. Hunt (as trainer) and those greyhounds to which the tablets were given, to a potential positive swab and the consequences and penalties that flow from that.

In the circumstances the Board are comfortably satisfied that Mr. Camilleri’s conduct is negligent and improper and in breach of GAR 86(o). The Board finds Mr. Camilleri guilty on charge 2.

In assessing penalties, the Board took into account all the evidence and submissions, including the following matters:

(a) Mr. Camilleri’s not guilty pleas;
(b) The nature of the prohibited substance Hydrocortisone;
(c) The need to maintain the integrity of greyhound racing and ensure a level playing field
for all participants;
(d) Prior penalties for similar offences, including those associated with other persons charged
in the ‘Luxurious’ swab irregularity matter;
(e) Mr. Camilleri’s character and his clean history (very minor prior offences) in the
greyhound industry;
(f) Mr. Camilleri’s false statements impeded Stewards in their investigations; and
(g) Mr. Camilleri’s conduct in relation to charge (2) was over a lengthy period of time.

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