A new era has begun for Newcastle’s premier greyhound track with the formation of The Gardens Greyhound Club, who will conduct their first meeting this Friday afternoon.
The GBOTA has been the interim caretaker of the track since the NCA were prohibited from continuing their operations.
Chairman Brett Lazzarini along with Vice Chairman Ron Bell, treasurer Michael Brown and club secretary Alan Williamson have predicted several positive changes for the track, which has been subjected to vast criticism since the first race meeting was conducted back in 2004.
The track began with four distances over the 413m, 515m, 600m and 715m, with several complaints leading to the transfer of the 413m boxes back to a 400m turn start in 2010.
“A new era begins on Friday and we enter into a new arrangement with confidence, excitement and positivity,” Mr Lazzarini said.
“The Gardens is vital to the continued growth of greyhound racing in NSW. The Gardens complex also has great potential to generate secondary income and the board of the new club intends to work not only to improve existing facilities but to also explore commercial opportunities that may exist for diversification and future growth.”
“We are looking forward to a positive future for The Gardens and we welcome new members to join us.”
Greyhound Racing NSW Chief Executive Brent Hogan had the following to say in the lead up to Friday’s meeting.
“The Gardens is a hugely important venue for greyhound racing in NSW that will stage more than 100 TAB meetings and be utilised by thousands of participants and fans of the sport in the 2014/15 racing season,” Mr Hogan said.
“It is wonderful to see such a talented group of people coming together to form this new club that will be open for all sections of the greyhound community to join.”
“The club has enormous potential to grow and thrive as it moves forward. We wish everyone involved with The Gardens Greyhound Club a very successful future.”
The Hunter Valley’s only two-turn track will conduct their flagship maiden event next month with a juicy $25,000 presented to the winner of the Group Three Laurie Healion Final. Australian Racing Greyhound will have a comprehensive preview and review of the series, as the emergence of some of the state’s most talented young greyhounds will be on show.