The Sunday Afternoon "Finish On"

Kel and Jackie Greenough might not have the numbers of Victoria’s biggest kennels but they have the ammunition to turn heads this spring.

Peter Davis

26 September 2021

Kel and Jackie Greenough might not have the numbers of Victoria’s biggest kennels but they have the ammunition to turn heads in the spring and summer features.

Take the aptly named Wow She’s Fast (My Bro Fabio – Fair Of Face) as an example. She stepped out for the first time at Sandown on Sunday and became the fastest ever maiden winner at the city track.

Her 29.08 offering was one length inside Burn One Down’s previous benchmark while Mepunga Blazer was previously second on the all-time list at 29.28.

Midst the top six of Sandown’s fastest maiden winners (prior to Wow She’s Fast) is Fanta Bale and Bekim Bale!

Bekim Bale and Fanta Bale were on debut while Mepunga Blazer had raced twice before his 29.19 win and Burn One Down had three unplaced efforts before his victory.

Burn One Down won his maiden by 18 ½ lengths – the margin for Wow She’s Fast a remarkable 27 ½ lengths.

And, just two races later, Kel Greenough’s emerging stayer Zac’s Entity stepped up to 715m for the first time and was imperious in his 10 ½ lengths win in 41.51.

WHAT’S IN A NAME

News out of the Greyhounds Australasia is that the review of Miss Hilo’s name is ongoing.

While GA has a job to do (reconsidering the name and requesting alternatives from owners), the functionality moves at a snail’s pace.

GA is much like the United Nations – a representative body which does not have the autonomy to act with a semblance of agility.

And, apropos to Miss Hilo and the naming protocol, an interestingly named Kiwi hound stepped out for 16th start at Christchurch on September 21.

Win four was a particularly straight forward for the back dog – his name? … Homebush Chloe!

The woke focus on gender orientation for humans is one thing but to give a male dog and female name. Please!

Naming is a minor part of GA’s function yet the glacial nature of decision making, gouging breeders with fees (e.g. $65 for FSI implant registration which the veterinary practice completes) and the cost of the business, as an administrator, is extreme.

In short, GA adds no value to the industry. During tough times there was no advocacy for participants (and that’s not changed), welfare is left to state bodies and national rules are so pliable (with local rule amendments) they are easily – and often – circumvented.

What value is there in GA?

GUESSING GAME

It’s interesting the detection time information (for veterinary and non-veterinary substances) previously on the Greyhounds Australasia website has been removed.

At the moment, there’s a significant shortage of the allowable oestrus suppressant Orobolin and for those treating Pannus.

The difficultly trainers have in obtaining Orobolin is symptomatic of the GA rules. They make the rules but when a headwind is encountered, there is no assistance or resolution.

BIG BROTHER’S VIEW

Turnover on greyhound racing is at record levels. Levels which were unimaginable just a few years back and all state bodies are charged with proper planning, good fiscal policy and solid return to industry.

Post-Covid-19 lockdowns, it’s likely that wagering will decline but, in the short term, the captured audience can be maintained and engaged in greyhound racing at a grass roots level.

And syndication is a big part of that retention process and a significant marketing opportunity.

The time to act is now but there are ‘sharks’ in the water and new participants must be protected and the Australian Securities and Investment Commission oversees syndication  … there are many measures in place to guarantee the integrity and conduct of syndicators.

One is that an Australian Financial Services Licence must be held.

The AFSL, in part, is required by anyone wanting to provide financial product advice to clients, deal in a financial product or market for a financial product ergo greyhound syndication.

A Managed Investment Scheme must be registered with ASIC. However, some horse racing schemes (syndications) will qualify for relief from direct registration with ASIC.

To qualify for relief the syndications must be conducted by a registered promoter approved by the lead regulator (control body for racing in each state):

  • the promoter must hold an AFSL license;
  • a pre-approved product disclosure statement must contain all relevant information and be made available to prospective clients;
  • the syndicate must be limited to no more than 20 members;
  • the total amount sought is not more than $250,000;
  • the syndicator must lodge reports with the regulator as required;
  • meet all other requirements of ASIC and the lead regulator including obtaining advertising approval;
  • the promoter must be a company.

Greyhound racing administrators have worked diligently with ASIC to provide a clear framework to protect investors from rip offs and, GRNSW for example, is working within ASIC requirements in all aspects of syndicate registration.

The Corporations Act imposes significant penalties for carrying on a financial services business without an AFS licence – it is a criminal offence under section 911A of the Act.

For individuals the penalties can be a maximum of five years imprisonment and / or a fine of up to $133,200 (600 penalty units) and ASIC is looking very closely at what the ‘private’ and not-registered greyhound ‘syndicators’ are doing.

Change is afoot and those working outside the framework of ASIC will be easily identified.

For non-believers, here’s the ASIC link!

https://asic.gov.au/about-asic/news-centre/news-items/asic-cracks-down-on-unlicensed-advice/

BACK ON TRACK

Trials recommenced at Wentworth Park on Tuesday and trainers were quick to get back to the Glebe circuit, with the Wednesday’s return to racing the appetiser for three weeks of high quality racing in Sydneytown.

Wentworth Park had not had a single race (or trial) since July 10 – the night Zipping Conway posted 29.73 and brilliant youngster Good Odds Cash won her seventh in (at start 11) in 29.77.

Both trials sessions conducted (Tuesday and Wednesday) were fully booked and, after the more-than two months break, times registered fell into line with previous efforts.

The best plans for Wentworth Park are contingent on NSW Health oversight but, short term, there’s a lot to look forward to.

The Group 2 Sydney Cup should be a race for the ages and, on final night (October 16), a Maiden Final and Masters Final has been added to the card which also includes the Vic Peters and Peter Mosman deciders at G1 level.

Adding to the high class racing, GRNSW is expected to announce significant prizemoney increases across all three tiers of racing this week.

The scaled increases are the result of record income from wagering and, along with capital investment, greyhound racing in NSW has never been in a stronger position.

Breeding numbers have steadily increased over the past 18 months and it seems the Government does see the code as a vibrant and much improved entity.

OVER THE ODDS

The win by Loxton Bale at The Meadows on Wednesday was highlighted by the error the TAB made in opening Fixed Odds markets.

A remarkable $71 was on offer first up and not even the ‘overs God’ could deny punters who supported the daughter of Magic Sprite.

$71 to $1.70!

https://youtu.be/hhTcZjwk4Fg

Trainer Corry Grenfell was quick to advise stewards that “the early betting market was not a true reflection of the kennels chances” and that he’d expected Loxton Bale to win (and had wagered on her).

Wagering oversight varies from state to state and a case in point is Yankee Roo’s debut effort at Murray Bridge.

The March 2020 youngster was well backed ($1.70 SP) at her debut outing on September 21 but proved utterly uncompetitive.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lPX5j70w6o

Just a few minutes before the off, she was $1.30 and just kept getting out. With no trials and or form, punters were ‘betting blind’ and an explanation should have been apparent via the Stewards’ Report … as evidenced below, that was not the case.

The integrity of wagering is critical to greyhound racing’s place in the market and the, with Yankee Roo tailing off without making any contact with a rival, punters deserved better.

The Murray Bridge Stewards Report re Yankee Roo

At the very least, a satisfactory trial before she races again would have been nice.