Accomplished greyhound racing participant Lennice Rilen passed away this week having battled ill health for several years.
Based in Langwarrin in the later years, Lennice, along with husband Norm and son Ian, has been a mainstay of Victorian greyhound racing for more than four decades.
Breeding an average of three litters every two years and racing a team never greater than 12 greyhounds, the Rilen’s success can be largely attributed to Lennice’s attention to detail from the moment the family’s pups were born.
“Mum loved whelping down the pups,” Ian recalled.
“And she was my catcher for all the dogs I trained until recent years when it became too much for her. She just loved it.”
Among the more prominent greyhounds in the Rilens care include 1993 Traralgon Cup winner, Lash’s Choice, group class trio Hasta Luego, Nuvolari and Nelirian, as well as 2017 Waterloo Cup finalist Night Attack.
Lennice was a Life Member of the Cranbourne Greyhound Racing Club, with Manager Amanda Frey expressing that the club is deeply saddened by her loss.
“Lennice contributed to our Ladies Committee and spent countless hours in the canteen. She will be sorely missed at our track,” Amanda said.
It’s fair to say that greyhound racing is in Lennice’s blood. When the Sandown Greyhound Club was first established, Lennice’s father was anointed an inaugural member, while her brother, the late Merv Patching was also a successful breeder/trainer in his own right.
Lennice’s funeral will be held on Friday 4 October at Bunurong Memorial Park for a 12.30pm service, followed by a wake to be held in the Cranbourne GRC Committee room (located in the grandstand) from 2pm onwards.