Qld industry keeps racing on after NSW bombshell

TO say it's been a volatile week in greyhound racing is something of an understatement.

On Thursday last week, the New South Wales premier Mike Baird announced his government's decision to close down greyhound racing in that state from July 1 next year.

The move is in response to a lengthy report into the industry, a report which is damning of activities including live baiting and the culling of greyhounds which are too slow to race or reach their use-by date.

Of course, there's been a huge backlash from the vast majority of industry participants in NSW. Persons involved in other states are understandably shaky, fearing they could be next.

Queensland Racing Minister Grace Grace met a delegation of Queensland greyhound racing participants last Monday and assured them there are no plans in this state to follow the NSW move.

Other states have made a similar reassurance.

"The feeling at the meeting with Minister Grace was extremely positive,'' Brisbane club CEO Luke Gatehouse said.

"She said the government and Racing Queensland are committed to continuing with the reform measures coming out of the McSporran report into greyhound racing in this state.

"At the same time, the Minister made it quite clear that it is up to the industry's participants to do the right thing.''

The NSW decision could be reversed.

Deputy Prime Minister and National Party leader Barnaby Joyce is going into bat for the greyhound racing participants, as are many other people and organisations.

The crux of the resistance move is, why close down an industry rather than trying to weed out and eliminate those doing the wrong thing?

Dashing Brockie

ANTHONY Azzopardi, from Victoria, won the group 1 Winter Carnival Cup at Albion Park last Thursday with his dashing sprinter Zambora Brockie.

Azzopardi revealed that he is considering a plan to set up a satellite kennel in Queensland.

He said he could have pups bred and raised in Queensland, then trained here and in Victoria.

If the NSW ban goes ahead, Queensland could expect an influx of people and greyhounds from that state. With only Ipswich and Albion Park as the TAB tracks in the south-east of the state, we would struggle to put on enough race meetings for everyone.

Multiple successes

TRAINERS with multiple wins at Ipswich this past week have been Peter Ruetschi, with a winning treble, and Col Byers, Lee Wylie and Darren Titmarsh each having two winners.

The Ipswich training premiership, which runs until December 31, sees Ruetschi leading with 502 points.

Byers is not far behind with 486.

Colder than Ipswich

IT'S been a bit chilly around Ipswich this past week. But spare a thought for our friends in Tasmania.

At the Devonport greyhound meeting last Tuesday, only three races were run.

Gale force winds blew a glass door from a tractor that was being driven around the track.

The glass shattered and there was no way officials could be certain every fragment of glass could be found and removed from the track.

There was heavy rain at the time too.

By the time race four was due to be run, it was hailing. I guess it would have been difficult to differentiate between glass pieces and hailstones on the track.

Races four to 10 were abandoned.

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