Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) tonight launched its Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.
Chariot Supreme has tonight been announced as one of the inaugural 36 inductees in to the Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall Of Fame.
Hall Of Fame Inductee : Chariot Supremee (Breeding Greyhound)
Kevin and Robyn Richards’ Blue Gums Stud was the “Home of Champions”.
The husband-and-wife team bred, reared and raced a host of future stars from their picturesque 35-acre greyhound complex nestled among the rolling hills of Neerim South.
But one greyhound, in particular, still tugs at their heart strings – Chariot Supreme.
The Richards’ first laid eyes on Chariot Supreme as a pup, rearing a July 1981 litter for the Rounds family of Pearcedale.
But little did they realise Chariot Supreme would eventually make his way back to Blue Gums Stud.
“He injured his hock shortly after winning the Silver Chief and I thought it would be a good opportunity to buy him,” said Kevin Richards, now living in Mornington.
“Alan Lester, a Traralgon businessman, had commissioned me to buy a dog, so I approached Ray Rounds.
“He cost $25,000, and I later bought him for $20,000 as a stud dog as he had a good cross with the Temlee line.”
Richards had Chariot Supreme’s damaged hock assessed by famed greyhound veterinarian Dr Jim Gannon, who gave him a racing ‘green light’.
“We took a punt on him, and he went on to win a Sale Cup and Warragul Cup, and make an Australian Cup final. In all, he won 19 races from 30 starts,” Richards said.
Richards rates National Star and Tangairn as the best sprinters of Chariot Supreme’s era.
“He wasn’t a good beginner, but he had unbelievable mid-race acceleration… He was a speed dog,” Richards said.
“His greatest win was the Silver Chief, but for me it was the Warragul Cup as I was a director of the club for more than 20 years.”
Initially, Chariot Supreme wasn’t all that popular with breeders and Richards had to promote him heavily at stud to get him off the ground as a sire.
But the ever astute Richards had mated his brood matron Shining Light with Chariot Supreme while he was recuperating from his hock injury.
And the resultant progeny – Shining Chariot, Chariot Of Gods, Chariot Of Light, Chariot Power and Supa Dupa – set him on a path to stud stardom.
“He went to stud for a $250 fee, then to $400 and $500, where we were receiving around six calls a day, and eventually to $1500 with a full book each month,” Richards said.
“Quite simply, he threw early pace into his pups.”
Chariot Supreme topped the Victorian Sires’ Premiership for six consecutive years (1987- 92).
Known as the “Sire of Sires”, Chariot Supreme sired numerous racetrack stars including Alf, Autumn Chariot, Black Pirate, Bomber Gleeson, Floodgate, Franklin Deano, Freewheeler, Hard Rain, Hay Dinney, Highly Blessed, Hopeful Supreme, Hot Spell, Keystone, Pure Talent, Shining Chariot, Singalong, White Gigolo, Wild Pirate and Val Curl.
He also sired the 1990 Melbourne Cup trifecta – Highly Blessed, Singalong and Black Pirate.
Chariot Supreme, who passed away on December 15, 1992, was buried on the Warragul GRC premises.
Richards said the induction of Chariot Supreme into the Victorian greyhound racing Hall of Fame was a “great honour”.
“It’s fantastic to see him recognised… When Jan Wilson (Greyhound Racing Victoria chairman) informed us, Robyn cried. In fact we both were in tears.”
The 36 Victorian Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame inductees are in three broad categories:
- The Pioneers (8) – recognised by the selection committee as having shaped Greyhound Racing’s early days.
- The People (15) – includes trainers, breeders, owners, administrators and other prominent personalities.
- The Greyhounds (13) – includes achievements on the racetrack and at stud.
The 36 inductees are as follows:
- Noel Banks – Administrator
- Byamee – Coursing Greyhound
- Silvester Doyle – Administrator
- Chris Flint – Administrator
- Ray Herbert – Trainer
- Roy Maidment – Administrator
- John ‘Jack’ McKenna – Administrator
- George Schofield – Administrator
- Bold Trease – Racing Greyhound
- Brett Lee – Racing Greyhound
- Chariot Supreme – Breeding Greyhound
- Cheltenham Lass – Racing Greyhound
- China Trip – Racing Greyhound
- Head Honcho – Breeding Greyhound
- Highly Blessed – Racing Greyhound
- Kantarn Bale – Racing Greyhound
- Lizrene – Racing Greyhound
- Odearo – Racing Greyhound
- Rookie Rebel – Racing Greyhound
- Temlee – Breeding Greyhound
- Wee Sal – Breeding Greyhound
- Graeme Bate – Trainer
- Fred Booth – Studmaster
- Ned Bryant – Trainer
- Ken Carr – Administrator
- William ‘Bill’ Conroy – Administrator
- Rod Deakin – Breeder
- Jim Gannon – Veterinarian
- Henry Harrison – Administrator
- Dave Hodgson – Canine Chiropractor
- Paul Hogan – Breeder/Trainer
- Stan Lake – Administrator
- Harold Matthews – Administrator
- Ron Nestor – Administrator
- Bill Pearson – Media
- Margaret Thomas – Administrator
All future Victorian Hall of Fame inductees will be announced at the annual Victorian Greyhound Industry Awards, with a maximum of four inductees in any given year.