The 2016 NGA Spring Meet

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This week the National Greyhound Association launched their 2016 Spring Meet. The NGA is a voluntary non-profit association that acts as the sole registry for racing greyhounds on the North American continent. They conduct two auction events every year, the Fall Meet and the Spring Meet.

The NGA Spring Meet began on Monday, April 25 and will finish up on Saturday, April 30, 2016. Greyhound Channel was a proud sponsor of a major stakes race run during the Spring Meet on Thursday, April 28. Since the races are held at the NGA track in Abilene, Kansas, the race video is tough to get (since it’s not simulcast like traditional racetracks). We were able to locate the video though! Check it out:

Gary Guccione, Greyhound Hall of Fame inductee and Executive Director and contributor for the NGA, wrote a greyt article detailing the Spring Meet agenda:

“Thirteen stakes are scheduled for the Track Stakes, as 319 pups have been entered in the semi-annual event. Of those entries, 277 are consigned to the Pup Auction, to be held later in the week as the Meet’s final event. The Brood Auction, to be held after a portion of the pup sale on Friday night, will feature 26 brood matrons and two artwork items.” You can read the rest of Mr. Guccione’s article for more information on the Spring Meet festivities.

Thursday night NGA Meet attendees celebrated the accomplishments of Donald R. Ryan, this year’s NGA Lifetime Achievement Award recipient. Mr. Ryan’s grandparents owned greyhounds and operated a farm and a kennel in Massachusetts. Mr. Ryan’s parents had a farm in Abilene, Kansas, where he developed his passion and appreciation for the sport. Following in his family’s footsteps, Mr. Ryan has spent his entire life involved in the greyhound industry. Aside from fostering a lifetime of greyhound athletes, he’s a pillar of strength to the greyhound racing industry and community.

Ryan Farms Kennel has an impressive list of greyhound athletes originating from their BREEZY ANN female line. It was this lineage that the Ryans’ all star pups were produced from: GREAT SON, MANKATO, MOLOTOV (2007 Hall of Famer and influential sire), and DOMINATOR (2000 All-America Team Captain, Rural Rube, and Flashy Sir award winner), to name a few.

During the Spring Meet, the NGA awarded two Greyhound Hall of Fame scholarships.

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Army Specialist Jason Dean Hunt. Photo courtesy of Iraq War Heroes.

The Jason Dean Hunt Scholarship honors Army Specialist Jason Dean Hunt (grandson of Hall of Famer Kay Smith). Army Specialist Jason Dean Hunt served 3 and a half years in the military, including a stint in Iraq. He was a courageous soul who was killed in the Ft. Hood, Texas shooting in 2009. He shared in his family’s love for greyhounds. In memory of Jason’s close kinship with greyhounds, a scholarship was created to encourage post high school education for people connected to the sport of greyhound racing.

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Edward J. Keelan (middle), with Dr. Thomas F. Carney and Joseph Carney Jr. Photo courtesy of Seabrook Greyhound Park.

The other Greyhound Hall of Fame scholarship is one dedicated to the Hall of Fame track owner and operator icon, Edward J. Keelan III. The Edward J. Keelan III Scholarship honors the Greyhound Hall of Fame inductee who began his career in greyhound racing back in the summer of 1940, working at Wonderland Park in Revere, Massachusetts. After college and the Navy, Mr. Keelan was involved with Raynham Greyhound Track, where he spent several years in many capacities as an officer, director, general manager, and owner of the track. In 1970 he was elected to be President of the AGTOA for three years, then was elected for three terms as the President of the World Greyhound Racing Federation in 1976. Mr. Keelan continued on to work for the legalization of greyhound racing in New Hampshire and Connecticut, and in the 1980’s, was instrumental in forming the American Greyhound Council. Not only was he passionate about the sport of greyhound racing but he also was a pioneer for greyhound adoption, believing in the importance of the welfare of retired greyhounds. He passed away in January 2007.

Scholarship award recipients are selected each spring by the faculty staff members at Kansas State University. For the first time ever, the scholarship recipients come from the same town and state, and will both be graduating this spring from Abilene High School, in Kansas.

The scholarship award recipients are Brendon Boyd Dalton, who will receive the Jason Dean Hunt Memorial scholarship, and Ashley Collette, who will receive the Edward J. Keelan III Memorial Scholarship. The scholarships were presented on Thursday night, April 28 during the Greyhound Hall of Fame’s ceremony program.

Congratulations to award recipient Donald R. Ryan, scholarship winners Brendon Boyd Dalton and Ashley Collette, as well as everyone involved at the NGA for putting together yet another exciting Spring Meet!

Wednesday Wisdom: Myth Busted #5!

Today’s Wednesday Wisdom brings you another busted myth, from our friends at Greyhound Facts, to help expand your greyhound racing knowledge, whether you are an experienced greyhound racing spectator or are new to the sport.

Myth: The first treats and toys greyhounds receive are after they have retired from racing and are pets.

Fact: All kennels give their dogs treats, whether it’s marshmallows, Vanilla Wafers, Milk Bones, cows ears, etc. Each trainer has their own treats of choice.

Greyhounds have toys to play with while growing up on the farm. Many race kennels also have toys. Of course, a muzzle or an empty bleach bottle are just as fun as those bought at the store.

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Greyhound Facts is a 501c3 nonprofit organization. Their mission is to provide a place to learn about all aspects of present day greyhound racing in the USA from those with hands on experience. Their network of volunteers includes people who are actively involved in the breeding, raising, training, and rehoming of these wonderful hounds, as well as those who adopt them. To find out more, visit: http://www.greyhoundfacts.org/.

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Do you have any suggestions or questions you would like answered? Let us know in the comments section!

Spotlight: Old Hounds Know All the Tricks

We enjoy presenting stories on current industry events and who’s-who in racing. Our spotlight articles typically focus on the up-and-coming greyhound youths we see making their way through the grades from maiden up.

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We think about the AGTOA 2015 All-America teams, with team captain and 2015 Rural Rube award winner HUSKER MAGIC. Along with her first and second teammates, these greyhounds are all super athletes who have carved their places among the year’s racing royalty.

What’s also rewarding is to witness an athlete who’s been making strides through the years–and subsequently, the grades–while still rocking it on-track. We hope these pups will be as successful as veteran KB’S LIKE A FOX, a white and blue brindle proven sprinter who seems to only get better with age.

“Foxy” is a known athlete who, after nearly 5 years of racing greytness, still continues to impress. Check out the article written by Jeff Prince, the Customer Service Manager at Palm Beach:

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RADER RACING KENNEL’S KB’S LIKE A FOX BREAKS 21-YEAR OLD RECORD!

SCORES PALM BEACH KENNEL CLUB CAREER-RECORD WIN #86!

March 20, 2016

West Palm Beach, Fl. – Rader Racing Kennel’s KB’s Like A Fox (Team Record* – Whistler’s Annie) accomplished a feat that no one thought would ever happen.

On March 18, 2016, “Foxy” broke the almost 21-year-old record of the legendary Pat C Rendezvous, as he scored his 86th Palm Beach Kennel Club career victory, elevating him to status of the winningest Greyhound in the history of the track.

KB’s Like A Fox, born August 6, 2011, scored his first career victory back on June 22, 2013. That race was contested on the 301-Yard Super Sprint Course and he’s been at home at that distance ever since.

“It was a phenomenal feat. I never thought it would ever happen. I thought it was one of those unreachable records”, said a proud kennel operator Norm Rader. “He wants to run. He likes to run and I’m going to keep letting him do it until he doesn’t want to anymore.”

KB’s Like A Fox is on track to break another Palm Beach Kennel Club record, becoming the first Greyhound in track history to win three track win championships.

PAT C RENDEZVOUS

First career win – June 17th, 1993

Last career win (#85) – September 20, 1995

KB’S LIKE A FOX

First Career Win – June 22, 2013

Record Setting Career Win #86 – March 18, 2016 (Active)

On March 18, 2016, “Foxy” broke the almost 21-year-old record of the legendary Pat C Rendezvous, as he scored his 86th Palm Beach Kennel Club career victory, elevating him to status of the winningest Greyhound in the history of the track.

 

Well done: breaking the 21-year record is quite an achievement! Congratulations to Rader Racing Kennel, owner Kenneth Biehle, and all connections! We’re happy to report Foxy’s impressive sprinting talents are still putting him in the money, as recently as April 17, 2016.

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Photo courtesy of Greyhound Data.

Another notable sprinting hound with a long racing career is SILENT POWER (OSWALD COBBLEPOT X SHIRLEY SUGAR), best known during the Multnomah Greyhound Park racing days. SILENT POWER was an electrostatic win monster for owners Paul and Vicki Coombs, having amassed 101 victories from 220 starts while competing in stakes company until his retirement at age 5 and a half years.

SILENT POWER was a sprint champ. He was the winner of the 2002 Multnomah Anthony Amato Memorial Dash and 2002 Multnomah Murray Kemp Classic. He came in 2nd in the 2003 Oregon Bred Sprint Championship; 2nd in the 2003 Murray Kemp, and 2nd in the 2004 Multnomah Wood Village Stake. He was the 2004 Murray Kemp finalist and finished his career with 101 race wins.

We believe KB’S LIKE A FOX gets better with age, just like a fine wine. We look forward to watching him and the other pups continue to bring greyt on-track performances.

 

Thanks to Palm Beach’s Jeff Prince for contributing the KB’S LIKE A FOX article.

Have you witnessed an exceptional up-and-coming greyhound athlete? Share your “hot dog” rising stars with us! If we feature your greyt athlete, we’ll post $2 in wagering credit to your Greyhound Channel account!

This Week with The Professor: Irish Racing

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Last week, our friend David N. had a question about Irish greyhound racing:

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Greyt question, David! Let’s see what The Professor has to say on the subject:

First, let me admit that I am not an expert on Irish racing but I will attempt to give you some information that may be helpful. There are several differences between American and Irish greyhound racing.

In the USA, we have 8 and 9 runners in a race. In Ireland, the maximum number of runners in a race is 6. In the USA, the post positions are determined by random draw. In Ireland, the dogs are seeded by running style. The inside runners are given inside posts and the wide runners are given outside posts. This is determined by the racing secretary.

The racing blankets are slightly different as well:

  • Trap 1 = Red with white numeral
  • Trap 2 = Blue with white numeral
  • Trap 3 = White with black numeral
  • Trap 4 = Black with white numeral
  • Trap 5 = Orange with black numeral
  • Trap 6 = Black & white stripes with red numeral

The kennel system is different as well. In the USA, each track will “book” or give a contract to a certain number of kennels to run greyhounds at that track. You must have a “booking” at that track to run greyhounds there. In Ireland, you must register your kennel with the Irish Racing Board, and you may run at any track that the greyhound qualifies for.

The grading systems are completely different. Rather than try to explain this, I’ve found the website for the Irish Greyhound Board, which has a lot of information to explain the Irish racing system. The Irish Greyhound Board‘s website will also help decipher the Irish racing programs as well, since they are also vastly different.

Thanks to David N. for this question! He has received a $2 credit to his Greyhound Channel wagering account.

Do you have a question for The Professor? Leave a comment below and you could receive a $2 wagering credit to your Greyhound Channel account if your question is featured!

The Last Handicapper Standing

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Back again for its third year, the Last Handicapper Standing Stakes Challenge is a popular contest designed to test your handicapping skills. The LHS will have you competing against your fellow handicappers each round to achieve the highest mutuel payout total for WPS over the course of several stakes races.

This contest is all about embracing the challenge of handicapping with the excitement of multiple stakes series. Handicappers new and old have brought out the pens, scratch paper, and programs to figure out which pup will come out on top each qualifying round with the best WPS mutuel payout total.

Throughout the duration of the contest, we’ll be handicapping Palm Beach’s Bob Balfe Puppy Stakes, Southland’s Spring Futurity, Derby Lane’s Gold Trophy Juvenile, Southland’s Razorback Classic, bestbet’s Puppy Stakes, Southland’s Southland Derby, and Derby Lane’s St. Petersburg Derby. Not only will you submit your selection per round on the Greyhound Channel contest site, but you also put your money where your mouth is by placing a $2.00 WPS on your handicapping entry. (Note: the $2.00 WPS bet is required in order for your handicapping entry to count toward the LHS contest. Any entry without an accompanying $2.00 WPS bet for a handicapping selection will not count towards the contest.)

We kicked off the first round of LHS on Wednesday, April 13, which featured the qualifying races of Palm Beach’s Bob Balfe Puppy Stakes round 1 (races 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, and 15).

Palm Beach – Bob Balfe Puppy Stakes Round 1: Race Number, Winner, WPS Payout

  • Race 4: FLYING RUSSIAN ($19.80, $6.00, $3.40) – Early lead on the inside.
  • Race 6: JS SWEET REVENGE ($8.20, $4.80, $3.80) – Breaks on the inside, all the way.
  • Race 8: JS INSTA GATOR ($25.60, $14.00, $7.80) – Without trouble maintained lead.
  • Race 10: SENTINEL ($5.00, $3.20, $2.40) – Late speed to close the front-stretch.
  • Race 12: KINDA CRUEL RED ($2.60, $2.20, $2.20) – No trouble down the middle.
  • Race 14: BLU TOO ATAREE ($2.80, $2.40, $2.10) – Early speed and lead.
  • Race 15: WIKI RAY DONOVAN ($3.00, $2.40. $2.10) – Box to wire.

As always, you can catch race replays absolutely free under our Watch All Races Live section. (Click on Watch All Races Live then click on Race Replays. Select the track, month, day, and race number and you’re in the action, any time!)

Here’s the Last Handicapper Standing leaderboard as of April 14:

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Seems like something up your alley? You haven’t even seen our contest prizes:

  • 1st Place                         $500.00
  • 2nd Place                       $250.00
  • 3rd Place                        $150.00
  • 4th Place                        $100.00
  • 5th Place                        $50.00
  • Runners-up 6-10          GHC merchandise

Just for playing, every participant will receive 1,000 points for our Greyhound Channel contest site that they can redeem for merchandise! Winners will be based on total overall cash accumulated by the end of the last stakes race listed. In the event of a tie, the winner will be selected by a random drawing. Winners will be notified by email or phone and will be required to wager the total amount awarded to them at least once prior to withdrawal.

It’s not too late to play! The next qualifying round of LHS is tomorrow, Saturday, April 16 at Palm Beach’s Bob Balfe Puppy Stakes Round 2. Then on Sunday, April 17 we have another LHS qualifying round at Southland’s Sprint Futurity Round 1! The last qualifying round of LHS will conclude on July 1, with Southland’s Derby Championship. You can check out the official contest race schedule here.

Be sure to submit your LHS selections via the Greyhound Channel contest site’s LHS enter here link. After submitting your LHS picks prior to the qualifying race, don’t forget to wager your $2.00 WPS to confirm your selection either over the phone with a Greyhound Channel wagering agent, or via our online wagering system.

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Do you have what it takes? Who will be the Last Handicapper Standing?

 

Stay tuned! We’ll be sure to keep the Greyhound Channel contest site, Facebook, and Twitter up-to-date with the latest standings and news. Get in the Action with Greyhound Channel!

Wednesday Wisdom: Myth Busted #4

Today’s Wednesday Wisdom brings you another busted myth from our friends at Greyhound Facts to help expand your greyhound racing knowledge, whether you are an experienced greyhound racing spectator or are new to the sport.

Myth: Greyhounds are aggressive; therefore, they have to be muzzled.

Fact: Greyhounds have very thin skin. Normal, mouthy dog play can cause tears and holes. When you have several dogs running and playing together at the same time, a plastic basket muzzle is a smart precautionary measure to take. It also protects the dogs from eating things that could be dangerous such as rocks. They can still keep their mouths wide open and drink while wearing them.

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Greyhound Facts is a 501c3 nonprofit organization. Their mission is to provide a place to learn about all aspects of present day greyhound racing in the USA from those with hands on experience. Their network of volunteers includes people who are actively involved in the breeding, raising, training, and rehoming of these wonderful hounds, as well as those who adopt them. To find out more, visit: http://www.greyhoundfacts.org/.

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Do you have any suggestions or questions you would like answered? Let us know in the comments section!

Southland Hot Dog: SHOW ON THE ROAD

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SHOW ON THE ROAD. Photo courtesy of Greyhound Data.

We love watching the races. We admire every greyhound athlete, no matter the race’s outcome. It’s the love for the sport that drives us–which is why we get excited when we hear about an exciting up-and-comer. There’s been some Facebook and Twitter buzz since early February about a pup barely two years old out of Southland Greyhound Park and he already has an impressive career record.

Offspring of KC AND ALL X CLOSIN IN ONAWIN, SHOW ON THE ROAD’s been burning it up at Southland Greyhound Park since August 21, 2015. He’s trained by Plum Creek Kennel’s Monte Hoopes and has impressed from the get-go with a strong career start in the 583-yard distance.

He won his first race by an unexpected 12.5 lengths which set the tone for his racing career. Within a month he had moved up from grade D to A. Quickly thereafter he began competing in AA, SA, and SAA races with solid effort. SHOW ON THE ROAD seemed to be searching for his stride to propel himself to the next level, which he found in late December. December brought an A-grade win, which was the beginning of a string of “in the money” races.

With the 2016 New Year, SHOW ON THE ROAD switched the distance up from the 583-yard to the 703-yard. Something clicked.

SHOW ON THE ROAD’s greyt-ness intensified. His racing style expanded to accommodate the extra field distance easily, which revealed an impressive stamina to cross the front-stretch with speed to spare. SHOW ON THE ROAD was consistently finishing in the money. This season he’s had 15 starts: 13 – 2 – 0 – 0.

He was on a 13 win streak until his most recent out on April 3, when he had some trouble breaking through on the inside. SHOW ON THE ROAD races again tomorrow, Saturday April 9, 2016 during Southland Greyhound Park’s evening card race 17 and we’ll be cheering him on!

 

Have you witnessed an exceptional up-and-coming greyhound athlete? Share your “hot dog” rising stars with us! If we feature your greyt athlete, we’ll post $2 in wagering credit to your Greyhound Channel account!

This Week with The Professor: Does Size Matter?

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Have you ever wondered if a greyhound’s size affects their overall racing performance? Here are some of The Professor’s thoughts on the subject.

Generally speaking, the size or sex of a greyhound is not a factor when handicapping a race.

Unlike thoroughbred racing, the female greyhounds compete on an even footing with the males. There may be times when a smaller greyhound may find their chances compromised by having larger hounds pinning them in or pushing them out but this is not common enough to be a major factor.

It has long been a belief that the top sprinters are generally in the 65-80 pound range and that the top distance greyhounds are smaller. There is some evidence of this in high stakes competition and you see females winning top distance races more frequently than sprints, but using it as a major handicapping factor can be tricky.

One caveat is that some greyhounds are more nervous before the races and can lose considerable weight in the “lockout” kennels where the greyhounds are kept before racing. Sometimes these hounds have a designation of WL (weight loser) after their name. These greyhounds will generally perform better in earlier races on the program, so keep an eye out for that.

Do you have a question for The Professor? Leave a comment below and you could receive a $2 wagering credit to your Greyhound Channel account if your question is featured!

April is National Adopt a Greyhound Month!

We hope you enjoyed our April Fool’s Day post with the fake story of the greyhound outrunning the cheetah. We couldn’t help ourselves. While the first day of April is synonymous with pranks and fun, we also celebrate it for another reason.

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We’re adopted! Bandit & Inc were adopted from Greyhound Pet Adoption NW.

April 1, 2016 kicks off the first day of National Adopt a Greyhound Month! These 30 days are dedicated to promoting greyhound adoption and educating the public about our favorite breed.

Is it the sweet smile? Waggy tail? One look and you’ll know: loving greyhounds is easy. If you’ve ever wanted to learn more about the greyhound adoption process or if you’re looking to add a smiling face to your household, consider adopting a greyhound.

While it’s rewarding for both you and the greyhound, choosing to adopt is a huge commitment. Once you’ve decided to go for it, you’ll need to find an adoption agency or organization to help connect you to your future best friend.

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Where’s a greyt place to start in your search? If you have a greyhound racetrack near you, check with their racing and mutuel departments. Most tracks coordinate with adoption agencies by either hosting an adoption program themselves or by having contact information for local organizations. Most agencies will take the time to get to know you and learn what your expectations are during the adoption process. This screening helps connect you to the best greyhound for your home. There are a multitude of greyhound adoption resources out there that can help point you in the right direction.

The Greyhound Project: Adopt a Greyhound is a volunteer non-profit organization dedicated to connecting you with information about and promoting the adoption of retired greyhound athletes. Their resources include an interactive map to help you find a greyhound adoption agency near you.

Friends of Retired Greyhounds (FORG) is a 501c3 non-profit, all volunteer organization dedicated to working with kennel operators and other adoption groups to place retired greyhounds in responsible, loving homes.

Greyhound Pets, Inc. is a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to the welfare of greyhounds (and greyhound mixes), serving the areas of the Pacific Northwest and Southwest Canada.

As a retired racer, greyhounds have been trained early in their careers to know basic commands. The adoption screening process of most agencies will identify the greyhound’s other personality traits and preferences, which is an important factor in finding your perfect pup. Once matched, be patient with your greyhound during their transition time as much of their routine is changing for them.

As a professional athlete living with their kennelmates to learning the ropes at home with you as a retired couch potato, it may take some time for your greyhound to adjust to all of the new changes. Once the new routine is established at home your friend will be making fast progress to fitting into their new role. And remember, the organization that helped connect you to your new friend is an invaluable resource should you have questions during the rehoming process. Bottom line: never hesitate to contact your agency for guidance.

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#FastFriendsForever: Bandit & Inc

Sometimes the best option is to realize adoption may not be the best fit for you at this time. Instead, have you considered donating your time or money to your local organization or favorite agency? Non-profit volunteer operations rely on the hard work of their volunteers and members, but also on the generosity of the community and industry in the form of donations. Donation and outreach are wonderful ways to help spread awareness during Adopt a Greyhound Month!

 

We highlighted only a few specific agencies to help give you an idea of the dedicated force of people out there working to help greyhounds. We realize there’s a plethora of agencies out there dedicated to helping greyhounds find homes and appreciate everyone’s tireless work. Do you know of other greyt organizations or agencies dedicated to finding forever homes for our retired racers? Let us know in the comments!