GRNSW CEO UPDATE - 29/05/2020

GRNSW CEO UPDATE - 29/05/2020


Welcome to what will be our final Question and Answer column which has run on Greyhound Racing NSW platforms since the outbreak in NSW of the COVID-19 pandemic back in March.

We have covered off numerous topics and answered many questions from participants over the past two months and I believe this sharing of information has been beneficial for all in our industry.

It has been a very difficult time for everyone, but the fact we have been able to continue racing throughout this period while most other sports around the world have been forced to close, is a testament to everyone in the greyhound racing industry.

I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank every participant, every race club and every member of their staff, GWIC and their officials, and our staff at GRNSW and GAP NSW for ensuring, by doing the right things, we were able to continue on with both our racing and re-homing missions.

From Monday we will lift the zoning restrictions and everyone will be able to race where they prefer, and the following Saturday night, June 6, Wentworth Park will return. In some ways it is back to normal, but in so many other ways we cannot think that we can go straight back to the way it was.

Biosecurity measures will remain in place with temperature testing, social distancing, and staggered boxing of dogs. We can’t take anything for granted, and have to remain vigilant.

It is great to be back racing at all these venues and particularly at our premier track, but as I have said from day one, our first and foremost concern is for the health and safety of all of our participants and staff.

While the regular column will be coming to an end, if you do have any questions please feel free to continue to send them to the following address:

We will wrap up this week with just the couple of questions we have received in the past seven days.

1.Q: Tony with the Premier announcing that from next week pubs, clubs, cafes and restaurants can have up to 50 customers, will dining facilities now be available at the racetrack?

A: In line with the Government’s announcement on pubs, clubs, cafes and restaurants, we have decided that clubs will now be able to open to serve patrons food and drink, however, as the NSW Government has stipulated, this is subject to a one person per four square metre rule, and strict social distancing guidelines must continue.

2. Q: Can I bring a handler back to the track now restrictions are being lifted?

A: With GWIC, we are still looking into this, and for the moment the advice remains that a handler can only accompany a trainer with more than four dogs engaged.

3. Q: Hi Tony, as from June 1 when we can all travel and race at all tracks, can we now have someone enter tracks with the trainer. If we travel to race and sometimes at night, it would be a safety issue if you didn't allow this. If trainers travel 3, 4, or 5 hours and maybe more, they will need assistance in driving and companionship to stay alert and be safe.

A: As I mentioned in the previous question, we are looking at this matter currently. You are able to take another person with you to the race meeting, however at the moment they are not permitted to enter the venue. I will update this matter as soon as we have any change.

Finally, I would just like to reiterate that these continue to be difficult times and we are as an industry all in it together, so I urge you to pick up the phone and call a fellow participant to make sure they are doing ok as well.

And as always, if there is anyone who may be struggling at the moment and wanting somebody to talk to, you can do something about that. 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.

Everyone continue to keep yourselves and your families safe, and importantly remain vigilant.

Good luck to everyone who puts a dog into the boxes around the State.

Tony Mestrov.