With the constantly developing issues surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Greyhound Racing NSW believes it is crucial to keep all participants up to date on all news involving the industry.

As such, we are encouraging all participants with questions pertaining to the COVID-19 situation, to email us here at GRNSW.

Each day I will do my best to answer questions from participants and publish them across our website and social media platforms.

If you have any questions, please email them to the following address:

Any important developments will also be published in media releases across our GRNSW network as required.

Here’s what our teams at GRNSW are being asked right now, with the responding answers (and please keep in mind that this is both an unprecedented and fast-moving situation).

1.Q: Having a look at the fields for this weekend, there appears to be some confusion from some trainers nominating outside of their “regions”?

A: Those are mistakes and will be scratched without penalty. We are attending to that right now. Any greyhound which the stewards deem to be contravening the new zoning restrictions, will be withdrawn. We will be vigilant with the nomination process to cut down on these instances happening.

2. Q: I would like to know if we can or can’t race in more than one zone?

A: No, you cannot. And I need to be emphatic about one thing. Trainers are asked to nominate dogs only in races in the region in which they train. Please don’t waste everybody’s time in calling, trying to make nominations in race meetings outside your home region.

3. Q: Will all tracks remain open to trial?

A: Yes, for the moment, but it is a strict, by appointment system, and you must contact your local club to find out when they are trialing and to book an appointment.

4: Q: The majority of staying races (700m+) are held at Wentworth Park. How will these greyhounds be accommodated in the new regime?

A: A good question and we haven’t forgotten about those dogs. We will look at programming 600m and 700m races at both Richmond and The Gardens, and our racing operations’ team - who are doing a fantastic job trying to get all this new racing schedule up and running - will look at scheduling those in coming days.

5: Q: I live at Young and there are two tracks that are the same travelling time from Young – Wagga and Goulburn. Can I go to both or only one?

A: Again, you are only able to race at one venue. We suggest you nominate for your desired venue, and if deemed to be your regional venue then you will be able to race. If not, stewards will withdraw you from the fields.

6. Q: I was watching on television yesterday, and my concern is around social distancing at the boxes. Is something being done about this?

A: Yes, it is. Together with GWIC we have released today ‘COVID-19 Racetrack Procedures’ which we instruct all clubs and participants to strictly adhere to. You will see in that document that with boxing dogs, it will now be done just two at a time: Box 1 and 5 together, Box 3 and 7 together, Box 4 and 8 together and Box 2 and 6 together. Trainers and handlers are to remain 1.5m from each other at all times. For the full list of racetrack procedures, click here.

7. Q: Hi Tony, these are clearly tough times for everyone not just those in our industry, and I was wondering if you have a hotline any of us can call if we need to talk to someone about what we’re going through?

A: You are absolutely right these are incredibly difficult times for everyone regardless of their walk of life or circumstances. We have been advocating that you look out for each other, and if you do feel the need to talk to someone about your situation, please do not hesitate to call. You can speak with a qualified counsellor at any time by calling 1300 687 327.

8. Q: In regards to the 70% closure is there any plan to give each current track a weekend meeting during the coronavirus shutdown to allow for people who can’t make it throughout the week?

A: GRNSW is consistently reviewing racing options and this is being considered as part of that review.

9. Q: Just wondering if the Wauchope to Maitland Final which ran heats at Wauchope last Saturday (21 March), if the final which was due to be run at Maitland 26 March will be rescheduled for the next meeting at The Gardens?

A: The final has been abandoned with prizemoney split between finalists.

10. Q: What are the rules re transferring a greyhound between regions ie a different trainer and interstate?

A: There are no restrictions in the transfer of greyhounds from one participant to another with regards to ownership or traineeship within NSW. There are also no restrictions for interstate transfers however there may be restrictions by the respective state government in relation to moving the greyhound to the new interstate owner/trainer.

11: Q: I usually spell my dogs in the country at a friend’s property. Is it OK for me to take the dogs out there?

A: I strongly recommend that each and every participant do whatever is necessary to not travel. Be sensible and cautious at this time.

12. Q: Is there a consideration to do temperature checks for participants at racetracks?

A: Temperature checks are planned for introduction at greyhound racetracks imminently.

Keep your questions coming, and everyone please keep yourselves and your families and importantly be vigilant in these difficult times.

Tony Mestrov.