What is the future of the finish on lure in Victoria?
Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) has formed a Finish on Lure (FOL) working group, which is made up of members of GRV, the Geelong Greyhound Racing Club (GGRC) and the Greyhound Owners Trainers and Breeders Association (GOTBA). The working group are actively reviewing the FOL trial at Geelong. The working group assessment will form their recommendation in late January 2018, and will be based on key data from the trial which includes; nomination numbers, injuries, racing incidents and relevant participant feedback.
Why do we still need catchers if there is a finish on lure?
Catchers are only required when races are run over 400 metres. Handlers are required to catch their greyhounds when races are conducted over the 460-metre distance. Although there is only 60 metres difference between the races, the lure pulls up in a close proximity to the 460 metre boxes which allows the handlers to collect their greyhounds once the lure is no longer in motion. In the interest of the health and safety of both the greyhounds and participants, handlers are not permitted to enter the track surface when the lure is in motion.
Why did Geelong switch to the Finish on Lure?
Geelong was closed in October 2017 due to an unidentified issue with the lure as well as an increase in injuries in the catching pen. After testing on the lure, the decision was made in conjunction with GRV and GGRC to resume racing on the FOL.
Were there any other changes to Geelong’s facilities while the track was closed?
Yes, in line with the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) phase one recommendations we increased the camber of the track from 8.33 per cent to 10 per cent and top-dressed the track with the aim to provide smooth transitions, reduce crowding and the potential for injuries and interference.
General maintenance was also conducted during this time which saw the rail sandblasted and repainted.
Will there be appropriate training for lure drivers?
GRV Lure drivers have driven under the guidance of New Zealand lure driver Ray Urdy. Urdy has many years’ experience driving the Finish on Lure in New Zealand and was enthusiastic in his support for our lure drivers and has focused on safe stopping procedures to ensure the greyhounds safety.
How has the trial affected nomination numbers at Geelong?
Nominations for the Finish on Lure have been high since the introduction at the start of December 2017. In the first month of operation Geelong averaged 167 nominations for both Tier 3 and Provincial meetings, which is around 30 extra nominations. Nominations continue to be high.
Will there be any change to the shape or size of the lure?
The size and shape of the lure will remain the same throughout the remaining trial period.