Victorian and South Australian-based trainers will have a new direct path to the Group 1 Adelaide Cup Final under exciting new cross-state initiatives being introduced by Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) and Greyhound Racing South Australia (GRSA).
The industry-first initiatives include the winner of GRSA’s State of Origin series, to be held at Angle Park on 26 September, being guaranteed a berth in the $75,000 to-thewinner Adelaide Cup Final on 11 October.
The State of Origin series is run along similar lines to Sandown’s Speed Star, with four Vic-trained greyhounds clashing with four locals under match race conditions.
The format sees the GRSA grader select the best four nominated greyhounds from each state and rank them from 1 to 4, with 1 being the highest rank.
The head-to-head match races will pit the two number 1 sprinters from each state against each other, followed by 2 vs 2, 3 vs 3 and 4 vs 4, with the overall winning greyhound earning $7500.
The State of Origin series was introduced in 2018 and is sure to create even greater interest among Victorian trainers in its second year with the inclusion of the massive carrot of bypassing the Adelaide Cup heats.
A guaranteed Adelaide Cup spot isn’t the only benefit awaiting the State of Origin winner.
In addition to gaining direct entry into the Adelaide Cup Final, the State of Origin victor will also secure a position in the Group 3 Sandown Shootout, the four-sprinter feature to be run on 14 November.
Another innovation will see the winner of the Adelaide Cup receive automatic entry, should connections accept, into the invitation-only Group 1 Topgun at The Meadows, which will be run this year on 9 November.
With positions in the Adelaide Cup and Shootout on offer, State of Origin places will be keenly sought after and the winner of Sandown’s Speed Star series, to be held on 15 September, will be rewarded with one of the four Victorian spots in the Origin series.
GRV CEO Alan Clayton said the cross-state initiatives would generate broader interest in greyhound racing.
“GRV and GRSA are delighted to introduce such unique opportunities to participants and their greyhounds and these new initiatives will add another dimension to our sport,” Mr Clayton said.
“Victoria and South Australia have a great history of friendly rivalry across a number of sports, and if we can bring some of that parochialism into the greyhound racing world it has the potential to captivate interest from general sports fans.” GRSA Racing Manager, Shaun Mathieson said the alignment between the two state industry bodies demonstrates their close working relationship.
“GRSA and GRV are consistently focussed on providing real benefit to its participants, as well as increasing interest in greyhound racing.” Mr Mathieson.
“This linking of interstate feature races is an industry first and we believe that the linking of these feature races will bring an increased.