Sport

History making year for Victorian greyhound racing

By Aydin Payne

Greyhound Racing Victoria has released its annual report for the 2018-19 season and positive numbers in a range of areas in the industry headline the document.

GRV has enjoyed one of its healthiest year's in recent memory with numbers for re-homed greyhounds, prize money and wagering at record highs.

The recently-released report highlighted that 2631 greyhounds were adopted via the Greyhound Adoption Program - and other re-homing agencies - which sees the numbers up two per cent from the previous year.

The recent surge in adoption numbers sees the total improve to almost 100 per cent in the past five years.

And, more importantly, the GRV has seen a major fall in euthanasia and track fatalities rates, with euthanasia numbers down by 28 per cent and race injuries down 17 per cent since 2014-15.

GRV chief executive Alan Clayton said a combination of education, regulation and investment strategies had played a role in the record-high numbers.

“Through a combination of education, regulation, investment in track infrastructure and initiatives like our Safe Racing Program, GRV is working to deliver the best possible environment for racing greyhounds in Victoria from birth to retirement,” Clayton said.

“All these strong outcomes in 2018-19 mean GRV is now well placed to deliver on its new strategic priorities for the next five years, which include a new focus on industry growth to secure a vibrant and sustainable future for the code in Victoria.”

Off the track, there was even more positive news for the GRV.

Wagering turnover on Victorian greyhound racing reached a record $2.37 billion for the 2018-19 year.

And that boosted the organisation's total income to $103.6 million in that time frame, with a growth of around five per cent from the previous year.

Clayton touched on the growth of the wagering, revealing that Victoria's professional race calendar had helped facilitate the five per cent boost.

“This strong wagering performance has been driven by Victoria’s ability to offer a professional, well-regulated and exciting racing calendar - the largest in Australia,” he said.