Thursday, November 17, 2016
Greyhound racing participants both sides of the border were saddened this week to learn of the sudden death of Peter Hubbard, of Grassmere.
His involvement with Tara Raceway went back a number of years and included Mount Gambier Cup success in 2008 with Maxwell Stanley.
In the ensuing years whenever he lobbed in Mount Gambier with dogs to race you always knew they were going to be very hard to beat.
Last year’s Christmas meeting saw one of his Superman x Baurna Molly youngsters in Cairnlea Lewis raise the bar as far as the Royal Fashion Maiden (512 metres) was concerned when running out a 12½ length winner in race record time of 30.18 seconds.
On September 18 he returned with Cairnlea Lewis who clocked a sizzling 29.77 seconds while another of his dogs in Little Showgun was also successful.
Five days later Little Showgun won again. This would be his last time at Tara Raceway.
On this day he had spoken with much anticipation of his April 2015 pups by Premier Fantasy out of Cairnlea Ellie, a daughter of Mogambo x Della Bale which had raced on 43 occasions for 19 wins and eight minor placings.
And in March this year she had whelped to Bekim Bale. There had been much to look forward to.
His visits to Tara Raceway, his polite manner of conversing and his genuine appreciation of the efforts of the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club will be missed.
Vale Peter Hubbard – just a really nice bloke – gone much too soon at 56.
NEW CALLER AT TARA RACEWAY
The new voice behind the microphone at last Sunday’s Tara Raceway meeting was that of Mark Mathews.
For the 34-year-old Adelaide-based Mathews, it was his first time at the Mount Gambier greyhound track and the first full meeting that he had called.
Currently employed on a part-time basis, he has been rostered to call more local greyhound racing meetings this year.
Mathews decided in late 2012 to pursue his burning ambition of becoming a race caller and by early 2014 had picked up a three-month contract to call races at Pioneer Park in Alice Springs.
“I certainly enjoyed calling my first meeting today,” he said. “And while I’m comfortable with the greyhounds, ultimately I’m looking to call all three codes, thereby hopefully giving myself more of a chance of picking up a full-time gig in the competitive world of race calling.”
‘THEY CAN’T TEACH ME ANYTHING . . .’
“I’ve been a trainer for years – they can’t teach me anything . . .”
How often are we going to hear that statement in relation to the forthcoming Trainers’ Workshops?
Well, all current Greyhound Racing SA licensed trainers will be required to attend the compulsory workshop in order to align with a national approach benchmarking minimum standards of competency. In future, this level of competency will form part of the re-licensing requirements.
The Mount Gambier workshops will be conducted on Tuesday, January 10, 2017 and Wednesday, January 11, 2017 with a choice of three time slots – 9 a.m.-12 noon, 1.30 p.m.-4.30 p.m., 6 p.m.-9 p.m. – on either day.
The three-hour workshops, which will be conducted by Dr Jane McNicholl, will be delivered in small groups of six in a relaxed, casual environment and cover both theory and practical skills.
An enrolment pack (contact Renee at GRSA on 08 8243 7113) will need to be completed and returned three days prior to attending the workshop.
So, upon completion of the workshop, which will include health care, nutritional requirements and education and training of greyhounds, trainers will receive a nationally recognised Statement of Attainment certificate which will then need to be provided when licences are renewed.