Infrastructure Upgrade For Newly-Named Victorian Greyhound Adoption Facility

Victorian Minister for Racing Dr Denis Napthine has officially launched the newly-named Greyhound Adoption Program (GAP) facility, the Wilson-Gannon Centre, and pledged over $350,000 from the Victorian Coalition Government to upgrade infrastructure at the centre in Seymour.

Dr Napthine said the venue would be known as the Wilson-Gannon Centre in honour of former Greyhound Racing Victoria Chairman, the late Jan Wilson, and the founder of the Greyhound Adoption Program and greyhound veterinarian, the late Dr James (Jim) Gannon.

“The memory of these former greyhound racing leaders, Jan Wilson and Jim Gannon, is going to be kept alive by a centre that is synonymous with selflessness, hard-work, integrity, and the upmost love and care for greyhounds,” Dr Napthine said.
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AGRA Greyhound Of The Year Awards

At a gala AGRA Awards night held on the infield of the Cannington race Complex in West Australia the Australian Greyhound Racing Association last Friday night announced Cindeen Shelby the winner of the 2009 AGRA Australian Greyhound of the Year.

It was a night of nights on the National scene with Delegates and club members coming together from all over Australia to celebrate the AGRA Awards night with all the stars under stars.

Hosted by GreyhoundsWA the association’s team is led by CEO David Simonette and Chairman Pat Tassell. They staged a unique and glittering affair out in the open and have certainly set the bench mark for the other states to follow in the years to come.
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Bold Trease Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Bold Trease has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Bold Trease (Racing Greyhound)

When Warrnambool trainer Norm McCullagh was educating [breaking-in] a greyhound called ‘Roy’ in the winter months of 1985, he had no idea that this pup was about to take him on the ride of his life.
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Wee Sal Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Wee Sal has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Wee Sal (Breeding Greyhound)

Staunch Collingwood supporter David Brown describes October 6, 1990 as “the best day of my life”.
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Rookie Rebel Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Rookie Rebel has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Rookie Rebel (Racing Greyhound)

Some greyhounds are known for their breathtaking speed, while others are known for their outstanding field sense. In the case of champion sprinter of the late 1950s Rookie Rebel, it was both.
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Odearo Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Odearo has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Odearo (Racing Greyhound)

Forty years ago greyhound racing regularly drew huge crowds to the track, with hurdling a common and spectacular element of the sport.
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Highly Blessed Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Highly Blessed has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Highly Blessed (Racing Greyhound)

Highly Blessed had a God-given talent. Perhaps the divinity was a result of her dam (I’m Blessed) being blessed by a Catholic priest in Queensland.
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Chariot Supreme Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Chariot Supreme has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Chariot Supremee (Breeding Greyhound)

Kevin and Robyn Richards’ Blue Gums Stud was the “Home of Champions”.
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Brett Lee Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Brett Lee has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Brett Lee (Racing Greyhound)

Brett Lee had the menacing pace of his celebrated namesake – Australian Test cricketer, Brett Lee.
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Bill Conroy Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Bill Conroy has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Bill Conroy (Pioneer Administrator)

Bill Conroy became Chairman of the Melbourne Greyhound Racing Association in 1979 in the days when thousands would go through the turnstiles at the club’s home base at Olympic Park in Melbourne’s CBD.

Conroy held the post for eight years before ill health forced his retirement in 1987.

“As Chairman of the MGRA he was completely impartial…straight down the line”, said John Stephens, who was on the MGRA committee under Conroy’s reign.

“He was a gentleman…quiet, unassuming and considered. I never heard him speak ill of anyone”, he added.

Stephens, who is now the CEO of Greyhound Racing Victoria, said there was one occasion however, where he witnessed an uncharacteristic outburst from Conroy. And unfortunately for Stephens, he was the person on the end of his wrath.

“I knew Bill reasonably well over a long period and I only saw him get angry once, and that was with me. It happened while he was MGRA Chairman and I had been assigned with the job of organising promotional activities for the Club’s Silver Anniversary. I worked frantically for about six weeks and then presented my plan to the MGRA Committee”,

Stephens said. “One of my ‘bright’ ideas was to name all the races on the night in question after people who had been great contributors to the MGRA. I may have been a little insistent that this be the path we take and this led to Bill banging his hand on the table and screaming ‘this won’t be happening while I’m Chairman.’ I was bewildered until he explained his reasoning was ‘it is not because of the people you put in [name races after], but because of those you leave out’.”

In all Conroy spent a total of 31 years as a Director with the MGRA after starting his career in greyhound administration with the Greyhound Racing Control Board in 1963.

Conroy’s knowledge of greyhound racing stemmed far beyond the administration of the sport however. He was a leading owner, trainer and breeder for over four decades and trained for many years in conjunction with the father of the girl he married, Jennie Klugden.

In days when it was common practice for trainers to set their greyhounds to win particular races so a fortune could be made on ‘the punt’, Conroy was as shrewd as they came.

“He was a ‘money trainer’. When he put his money on [one of his dogs] they always won”, Stephens recalled. “He was probably among the top 10 trainers in Victoria during his time and a lot of his greyhounds had the ‘Idle’ prefix.”

Conroy’s kennel produced many hundreds of top class winners including the 1957 NSW St. Ledger winner Idle Sign, as well as Idle Mate, Idle Fair, Royal Cream, Stumpy’s Mate, Rose Havoc and Diamond Havoc.

A brilliant man with a greyhound, Conroy was happy to offer advice, but only if you asked him directly.

“He was a wealth of information, but he would not share his knowledge unless you asked him specifically. When it came to dog ailments and feeding, Bill [and Jennie] knew just about everything.

If a dog had a muscle injury, he’d know how to fix it, or if a dog had any internal problems, he’d know a cure”, Stephens said.

“I remember mentioning to him a couple of times about a dog I had that had split its webbing, but he offered no advice. A few weeks went by and I was still having trouble with this dog’s webbing, so I asked Bill if he had any ideas on how to repair it. It was only at that point that he told me exactly how to treat it and said it would be fixed in 10 days, and sure enough he was right. But he only told me because I specifically asked for his advice.

If you didn’t ask him directly for help, he wouldn’t tell you. That’s how he was”, Stephens added.

Bill Conroy was about 80 years old when he passed away in the mid ‘90s. This was around the same time that the doors closed on Olympic Park, a greyhound stadium of which he proudly served as Chairman, and one that signified glory days of the sport.

Notable Acheivements

  • Melbourne Greyhound Racing Association [MGRA] Director for 31 years
  • MGRA Chairman [1979-‘87]
  • Foundation & Life Member of the MGRA
  • Successful breeder/owner/trainer for 40 years
  • Board Member of the Greyhound Racing Control Board [1961-‘76]
  • Greyhound Racing Control Board Member for many years dating back to 1963

The 36 Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame inductees are in three broad categories:

  • The Pioneers (8) – recognised by the selection committee as having shaped Greyhound Racing’s early days.
  • The People (15) – includes trainers, breeders, owners, administrators and other prominent personalities.
  • The Greyhounds (13) – includes achievements on the racetrack and at stud.

The 36 inductees are as follows:

    PIONEERS [8]

  • Noel Banks – Administrator
  • Byamee – Coursing Greyhound
  • Silvester Doyle – Administrator
  • Chris Flint – Administrator
  • Ray Herbert – Trainer
  • Roy Maidment – Administrator
  • John ‘Jack’ McKenna – Administrator
  • George Schofield – Administrator
  • GREYHOUNDS [13]

  • Bold Trease – Racing Greyhound
  • Brett Lee – Racing Greyhound
  • Chariot Supreme – Breeding Greyhound
  • Cheltenham Lass – Racing Greyhound
  • China Trip – Racing Greyhound
  • Head Honcho – Breeding Greyhound
  • Highly Blessed – Racing Greyhound
  • Kantarn Bale – Racing Greyhound
  • Lizrene – Racing Greyhound
  • Odearo – Racing Greyhound
  • Rookie Rebel – Racing Greyhound
  • Temlee – Breeding Greyhound
  • Wee Sal – Breeding Greyhound
  • PEOPLE [15]

  • Graeme Bate – Trainer
  • Fred Booth – Studmaster
  • Ned Bryant – Trainer
  • Ken Carr – Administrator
  • William ‘Bill’ Conroy – Administrator
  • Rod Deakin – Breeder
  • Jim Gannon – Veterinarian
  • Henry Harrison – Administrator
  • Dave Hodgson – Canine Chiropractor
  • Paul Hogan – Breeder/Trainer
  • Stan Lake – Administrator
  • Harold Matthews – Administrator
  • Ron Nestor – Administrator
  • Bill Pearson – Media
  • Margaret Thomas – Administrator

All future Victorian Hall of Fame inductees will be announced at the annual Victorian Greyhound Industry Awards, with a maximum of four inductees in any given year.

Silvestor Doyle Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Silvestor Doyle has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Silvestor Doyle (Pioneer Administrator)

Silvester Doyle was one of a handful of key administrators that helped lay the platform for the sport of greyhound racing today.
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Roy Maidment Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Ron Nestor has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Roy Maidment (Pioneer Administrator)

Of the many outstanding Victorian greyhound administrators to have graced the sport, Roy Maidment is the granddaddy of them all.
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Jack McKenna Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

John McKenna has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : John McKenna (Administrator)

When greyhound people hear the name ‘McKenna’ they think of the Sandown Greyhound Racing Club’s prestigious Group 2 distance event, the McKenna Memorial.
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Harold Matthews Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Harold Matthews has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Harold Matthews (Administrator)

Huge crowds attending greyhound races in Melbourne’s CBD is something today’s generation would find difficult to fathom.

However, this was the norm at Olympic Park in Swan Street during the 1960s, 70s & ‘80s, and the person at the helm for much of it was Harold Matthews in his role as Chairman/Manager of the Melbourne Greyhound Racing Association [MGRA].

Matthews held that position from 1955-’79, and prior to the opening of Olympic Park as a greyhound venue in 1962, Matthews was in charge when the MGRA began racing five kilometres to the north west at the North Melbourne Football Ground [Arden Street].

The opening race meeting at North Melbourne was held on 7th October, 1957 with immortal greyhound Rookie Rebel featuring in the main event on the 10 race card. First prize in that race was 75 pounds [enough to buy a new car], while 83 bookmakers were in attendance, showing the paramount importance of ‘the punt’ in those days.

However, it was at Olympic Park that Matthews’ stocks as an administrator really grew. He oversaw changes in technology, administration and developments at the track, with his work so impressive that the $5.5Million two-tier grandstand at Olympic Park was named in his honour.

Incidentally, Matthews didn’t enter the world of greyhound administration until he was in his fifties, and his life before then was just as impressive.

A champion footballer, he represented St. Kilda in 136 Victorian Football League [now the AFL] matches from 1925-36, and captained the club for two seasons. He also represented Victoria in football.

“He was named as Vice-Captain of Victoria, and once captained the team for half a game when [Collingwood legend] Syd Coventry went off the ground injured”, Matthews’ son Bruce said recently.

“Dad’s nickname in football was “Circ”, which was short for Circus because he was always up to practical jokes.”

Football aside, Matthews also worked as a builder for more than 30 years.

“Dad built a lot of houses in the Brighton area. He tried out for the army but failed his medical because of a minor heart condition. But he wanted to be involved with the Defence Force so he built a lot of the huts for the army near Melton and huts for the air force in Point Cook”, Bruce said proudly.

Harold was married to Myrtle, and as well as Bruce they also had a daughter named Shirley.

Bruce worked at the MGRA under his father for many years, and described his dad as “approachable and very well liked, but at the same time he didn’t take any nonsense.”

“I was a carpenter and helped build the structures at the old North Melbourne track, and I later worked at Olympic Park predominantly as the Maintenance Officer from 1962 until the track closed in 1995”, he said.

Bruce fondly remembers a promotional football match once being played between Melbourne’s two metropolitan greyhound clubs, Olympic Park and Sandown Park.

“It was played for fun. [Former champion South Melbourne full-forward] Bob Pratt owned a few greyhounds and coached Sandown that day, while dad coach Olympic Park. I can’t remember who won but I know it was close. It may have even been a draw”, he laughed.

Among those that pulled on the boots for Olympic Park that day was the late Ken Carr, an outstanding greyhound administrator in his own right.

“Dad actually gave Ken his start in greyhound administration and groomed him to take over from him as Chairman of the MGRA. Ken then went on to become the CEO of the Greyhound Racing Control Board [now Greyhound Racing Victoria]”, Bruce said.

In describing his father as “a good dad”, Bruce spoke about one of his favourite childhood memories.

“One day when I was playing football for Brighton Grammar under 12s against Ivanhoe Grammar, he piled 17 of us boys into his 1948 Pontiac”, Bruce said with a chuckle.

Harold Matthews passed away in 1983 aged 81, but like the memories of the glory days of greyhound racing at Olympic Park, he remains a cherished part Victoria’s sporting history.

Notable Acheivements

  • Chairman Melbourne Greyhound Association 1955-79
  • Awarded a Member of the British Empire [MBE] in 1977, which is now known as an Order of Australia Medal [OAM], for his contribution to greyhound racing
  • Represented St. Kilda in 136 Victorian Football League matches
  • Represented Victoria [Vice Captain] in Australian rules football

The 36 Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame inductees are in three broad categories:

  • The Pioneers (8) – recognised by the selection committee as having shaped Greyhound Racing’s early days.
  • The People (15) – includes trainers, breeders, owners, administrators and other prominent personalities.
  • The Greyhounds (13) – includes achievements on the racetrack and at stud.

The 36 inductees are as follows:

    PIONEERS [8]

  • Noel Banks – Administrator
  • Byamee – Coursing Greyhound
  • Silvester Doyle – Administrator
  • Chris Flint – Administrator
  • Ray Herbert – Trainer
  • Roy Maidment – Administrator
  • John ‘Jack’ McKenna – Administrator
  • George Schofield – Administrator
  • GREYHOUNDS [13]

  • Bold Trease – Racing Greyhound
  • Brett Lee – Racing Greyhound
  • Chariot Supreme – Breeding Greyhound
  • Cheltenham Lass – Racing Greyhound
  • China Trip – Racing Greyhound
  • Head Honcho – Breeding Greyhound
  • Highly Blessed – Racing Greyhound
  • Kantarn Bale – Racing Greyhound
  • Lizrene – Racing Greyhound
  • Odearo – Racing Greyhound
  • Rookie Rebel – Racing Greyhound
  • Temlee – Breeding Greyhound
  • Wee Sal – Breeding Greyhound
  • PEOPLE [15]

  • Graeme Bate – Trainer
  • Fred Booth – Studmaster
  • Ned Bryant – Trainer
  • Ken Carr – Administrator
  • William ‘Bill’ Conroy – Administrator
  • Rod Deakin – Breeder
  • Jim Gannon – Veterinarian
  • Henry Harrison – Administrator
  • Dave Hodgson – Canine Chiropractor
  • Paul Hogan – Breeder/Trainer
  • Stan Lake – Administrator
  • Harold Matthews – Administrator
  • Ron Nestor – Administrator
  • Bill Pearson – Media
  • Margaret Thomas – Administrator

All future Victorian Hall of Fame inductees will be announced at the annual Victorian Greyhound Industry Awards, with a maximum of four inductees in any given year.

George Schofield Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

George Schofield has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : George Schofield (Administrator)

George Schofield is the only surviving ‘Pioneer’ to be inducted into Victorian greyhound racing’s Hall of Fame and, quite remarkably, the 91 year old continues to contribute to the sport today through his work as a canine chiropractor.
Continue reading George Schofield Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Kantarn Bale Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Kantarn Bale has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Kantarn Bale (Greyhound)

Of all the champions to have graced Graeme Bate’s kennel, one stands out above the rest – Kantarn Bale.
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Graeme Bate Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Graeme Bate has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Graeme Bate (Trainer)

Graeme Bate has been training greyhounds since the 1970s and has prepared more winners than anyone during that time.
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Dave Hodgson Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Dave Hodgson has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Dave Hodgson (Canine Chirpractor)

The legend of Kilcunda canine chiropractor Dave Hodgson had its origins when one of his cattle dogs injured a leg.
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Jim Gannon Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Dr Jim Gannon has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Jim Gannon (Veterinarian)

Born in 1930, James Richard Gannon graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Veterinary Science from the University of Queensland in 1952.
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Stan Lake Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Stan lake has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Stan Lake (Administrator)

Legendary Warrnambool Greyhound Racing Club administrator Stan Lake was the proverbial court jester – full of laughter and witticism.
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Rod Deakin Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Rod Deakin has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Rod Deakin (Breeder)

Iconic greyhound breeder Rod Deakin was born in Finley, New South Wales, on July 18, 1924.
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Ned Bryant Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Ned Bryant has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Ned Bryant (Trainer)

George Edwin (Ned) Bryant was a loveable larrikin.
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Noel Banks Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Noel Banks has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Noel Banks (Pioneer)

Born in Dalmore near Tooradin in May 1921, Noel Banks OAM spent his early childhood in Oakleigh where he went to the local primary school and then to Caulfield Technical School.
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Margaret Thomas Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Margaret Thomas has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Margaret Thomas (Administrator)

Margaret Thomas is considered one of greyhound racing’s ‘first ladies’. Her tireless devotion and commitment has encompassed the entire gamut of the sport.
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Fred Booth Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Fred Booth has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Fred Booth (Studmaster)

Born on June 22, 1914, Fred Booth, the son of a miner, was given his first greyhound when he was five years old. It was back in the coursing days when the miners and their greyhounds would board the train at Wonthaggi to race at Dalyston.
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Cheltenham Lass Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.
Cheltenham Lass has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Chelltenham Lass (Racing Greyhound)

In late 1960, Lal Scurrah bought a Dasher’s Bow-Dinah Jet female pup, later named Fairbairn Queen.
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Paul Hogan Inducted In To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Paul Hogan has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Paul Hogan (Breeder/Trainer)

Paul Hogan is regarded as one of the greatest greyhound breeders of all-time. The Hogan breed – Dinah Jet, Fairbairn Lady, Fairbairn Queen, Cheltenham Lass and Delbairn Babe – was one of the sport’s strongest dam lines in the 1960s and 1970s.
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Head Honcho Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Head Honcho has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Head Honcho (Breeding Greyhound)

Phil and Barbara Pryor were enthusiastic students of greyhound bloodlines. They were the sports head honchos on ancestry and applying it to breeding selection.
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Ron Nestor Inducted To Hall Of Fame

Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

Ron Nestor has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.

Hall Of Fame Inductee : Ron Nestor (Administrator)

It has been said that Ron Nestor’s record as a volunteer in sports administration is like Bold Trease’s four Sandown Cups – it won’t be equaled.

Between 1954-2001 Nestor held numerous administrative positions with the National Coursing Association [NCA] and he was also a Director of the Greyhound Racing Control Board [GRCB], which is now known as Greyhound Racing Victoria.

Nestor was also the judge of coursing’s premier event, the Waterloo Cup for 27 years, and he slipped and judged the open field coursing for a few years until it was ceased in 1964. He was also involved at club committee level with Geelong and as a Director of the Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.

“It was in Ron’s nature to volunteer his time, and it extended beyond greyhound racing”, Nestor’s wife, Anne recently explained.

“For instance, I was President of the local gardening club, of which Ron was never a member.

However he would attend our meetings, mow the lawns and do all sorts of errands to help us out.

Also, when our kids were younger he’d often be doing maintenance at the school.”

With a wife and five children to support, Ron did have to bring home a wage however, and he did so for many years in the police force.

“He was a policeman for 30 plus years and was a Senior Constable but he never had any ambition to go any higher than that. He did it to put food on the table but it wasn’t one of his passions”, Anne said.

Horse racing was one of Ron’s passions however, and he eventually quit the police force to work for esteemed thoroughbred trainer Colin Hayes.

“Ron and his brother Patrick started working for the Hayes stable at the same time. At first they would guard Colin’s horses at night time, and then Ron worked his way up and was handling horses during their morning track work which would involve him getting up at 3.20am each morning. He’d also handle the horses on race days and ended up working for Colin for over 20 years. In fact Ron owned a couple of horses along the way and was a part-owner in the 1972 Caulfield Cup winner How Now”, Anne said.

Another string to Ron Nestor’s bow was that he worked every September for 54 years at the Royal Melbourne Show.

“He was in charge of the events in the “Arena” at the Royal Melbourne Show, whether it was the animals, or the cars or the grand parade. Policemen weren’t paid very well in those days and the money he made from this was our Christmas money”, Anne said.

Ron’s interest in greyhound racing started when he was 14, when he took an interest in some greyhounds that were being trained by his local green grocer, Bob Kellaway.

He helped Kellaway work his dogs and soon enough Nestor was training greyhounds himself. He did so for many years, preparing winners at a lot of tracks including Sandown, Olympic Park, North Melbourne, Napier Park, Maribyrnong, White City, Geelong, Ballarat and Wonthaggi.

In fact, going to the races was something Nestor thoroughly enjoyed.

“Back when he was training dogs he’d be at the races several nights a week and right up until he died he would go to Sandown every Thursday night and The Meadows on Saturday nights. That was his leisure time. When he was with the GRCB he would attend a lot of the country cups as the GRCB representative. I don’t think he missed a Shepparton Cup, and he went to Warrnambool a lot of years and several other tracks”, Anne said.

Ron Nestor’s love for coursing was also strong. It was “always his dream” to visit Ireland’s premier coursing track Clonmel, which he did when in his late sixties. However, he had to overcome a fear of homesickness to do so.

“He ended up going to Ireland with [then Greyhound Racing Victoria’s CEO] Adam Wallish and Gavin Fitzpatrick, who was President of the NCA, to promote the first international series in Australia [in 1997]”, Anne said.

“Leading up to the trip Ron got more and more anxious because he didn’t like being away from home and I was worried he wasn’t going to go. But he did go and he thoroughly enjoyed it. It was the first time I’d known him to be away from home and be happy about it. He took to Ireland like a duck to water, partly because the people were so hospitable. In fact, he loved it so much he took me there a couple of years later”, she added.

Ron Nestor died in 2006 aged 77. His best mate was another greyhound racing legend, George Schofield, who joins Ron as a Victorian Hall of Fame inductee.

Schofield, 91, recently said of Ron…” was a great bloke and a great family man. If you wanted a drink you knew he’d be there with you. I couldn’t believe what a good mate he was and there couldn’t have possibly been a better person than Ron. There is no one more worthy to go into the Hall of Fame.”

Nestor’s devotion to greyhound racing over a long period is testimony to that.

Notable Acheivements

  • Director of the Greyhound Racing Control Board for 22 years
  • National Coursing Association Executive 1954
  • NCA Treasurer 1976-94
  • NCA President 1994-2001
  • Judge of the Waterloo Cup 1962-89
  • Geelong Greyhound Racing Club Committee Member for 12 years
  • Sandown Greyhound Racing Club Director 1999-20004
  • Superintendent of the Main Arena of the Royal Melbourne Show through the Royal Agricultural Society
  • Life Member of the Royal Agricultural Society
  • Life Member Sandown Greyhound Racing Club
  • Life Member Melbourne Greyhound Racing Association
  • Awarded Australian sports Medal in 2000 for his contribution to greyhound racing

The 36 Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame inductees are in three broad categories:

  • The Pioneers (8) – recognised by the selection committee as having shaped Greyhound Racing’s early days.
  • The People (15) – includes trainers, breeders, owners, administrators and other prominent personalities.
  • The Greyhounds (13) – includes achievements on the racetrack and at stud.

The 36 inductees are as follows:

    PIONEERS [8]

  • Noel Banks – Administrator
  • Byamee – Coursing Greyhound
  • Silvester Doyle – Administrator
  • Chris Flint – Administrator
  • Ray Herbert – Trainer
  • Roy Maidment – Administrator
  • John ‘Jack’ McKenna – Administrator
  • George Schofield – Administrator
  • GREYHOUNDS [13]

  • Bold Trease – Racing Greyhound
  • Brett Lee – Racing Greyhound
  • Chariot Supreme – Breeding Greyhound
  • Cheltenham Lass – Racing Greyhound
  • China Trip – Racing Greyhound
  • Head Honcho – Breeding Greyhound
  • Highly Blessed – Racing Greyhound
  • Kantarn Bale – Racing Greyhound
  • Lizrene – Racing Greyhound
  • Odearo – Racing Greyhound
  • Rookie Rebel – Racing Greyhound
  • Temlee – Breeding Greyhound
  • Wee Sal – Breeding Greyhound
  • PEOPLE [15]

  • Graeme Bate – Trainer
  • Fred Booth – Studmaster
  • Ned Bryant – Trainer
  • Ken Carr – Administrator
  • William ‘Bill’ Conroy – Administrator
  • Rod Deakin – Breeder
  • Jim Gannon – Veterinarian
  • Henry Harrison – Administrator
  • Dave Hodgson – Canine Chiropractor
  • Paul Hogan – Breeder/Trainer
  • Stan Lake – Administrator
  • Harold Matthews – Administrator
  • Ron Nestor – Administrator
  • Bill Pearson – Media
  • Margaret Thomas – Administrator

All future Victorian Hall of Fame inductees will be announced at the annual Victorian Greyhound Industry Awards, with a maximum of four inductees in any given year.

Greyhounds Australasia’s Drug Withholding Guidelines Flawed Says Racing Appeals Tribunal

South Australia’s Racing Appeals Tribunal has cited the fact that Greyhounds Australia’s (formerly ANZGA) Drug Withholding Guidelines are flawed as reason enough to reduce South Australian greyhound trainer Raye Kelly’s disqualification from seven months to just four.

In December 2008 Raye Kelly was handed a seven month disqualification for presenting Flame McBain to race at a Port Augusta Greyhound Racing Club meeting on the 11th October 2008, when Flame McBain subsequently tested positive to the anabolic steroid Stanazol; becoming South Australia’s first greyhound trainer to be convicted of producing a greyhound to race under the influence of an anabolic steroid.
Continue reading Greyhounds Australasia’s Drug Withholding Guidelines Flawed Says Racing Appeals Tribunal

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