1993 Within 24 hours of the Government announcement to allow the evening opening of betting froms – from the following April – Sheffield and Sunderland announce plans to install betting shots. GRA are on the verge of a deal with William Hill.
1947 A litter of nine untried 15-month-old pups produced by Carlisle breeder Mr A Forster fetch a combined 935 guineas at Aldridges Sales. Index linked to 2014, the figure would be around £41,000.
1959 White City Racing Manager Percy Brown announces that GRA are considering introducing a rule that will prevent dogs contesting races in between rounds of competitions.
1957 525 Track records: Brighton-Trabolgan Star (29.11), Harringay-Polonius (29.22), Perry Barr-Galtee Cleo (29.74), Walthamstow-Duet Leader (29.24), Wembley-Pauls Fun (28.91), West Ham-Coolkill Chieftain (28.65), White City-Pauls Fun (28.64),
1947 Press report: ‘Hysteria broke out in the Wandsworth racing kennels last Saturday and caused the postponement of the second and third races’
1967 In a bid to “reduce over production” (3,840 litters in 1966) the ICC raises the annual stud dog registration fee from £5 to £20 (index linked to £376).
2013 Henlow are forced to cancel two out of three meetings due to bad weather. (In the meeting that they do race, four races are reduced to three runners) While the track is just about raceable, trainers are refusing to travel as the cold snap bites. Other meetings are lost at Mildenhall, Poole, Coventry and Newcastle.
1937 Notice for West Ham racegoers: “will be interested to learn that in March, the no.99 service of tram-cars from Stratford Plaistow, underground station and the Greengate will be replaced by the latest type trolley buses”.
1965 Litter entries are due to close for the 1966 Wimbledon Two-Year-Old Stakes – the most lucrative of the eight produce stakes currently held. The Plough Lane event will take place 16 months later and will be worth £1,265 to the winner (index linked to approx. £20,700). Other events are scheduled for Brighton (Regency), Catford, Bristol, Leeds, Oxford, Monmore and Stamford Bridge. Only the latter is restricted to British breds.
1992 In admitting the RGT is almost bankrupt, GRA’s chief executive admits that the organisation’s annual income of around £55,000 (around £119K today) does not stretch to “keeping 72 greyhounds in kennels at £2 per day, and advertising for new homes.”
1967 Minutes after an attempted break-in at Oxford Stadium, police arrest a man lying beside the railway line nearby. Back at the stadium kennels, they find a bag containing meatballs, a hacksaw and screwdriver. Three panels in the kennels were found to be damaged. The 40 year old man appears in court on suspicion of being concerned with a doping conspiracy but the judge dismisses the case for lack of evidence.
1953 Two men found guilty of attempting to run in ‘ringer’ in a race at Crossgates Greyhound Stadium each receive 30 day prison sentences from Dunfermline Sheriff’s court.
2011 Shelbourne remains closed following the Christmas break due to flooding on the main grandstand.
1953 Former Scotland Yard detective Stan Baker publishes a book “Greyhound racing with the lid off” in which he details 29 stimulants and depressants currently in use by doping gangs.
1947 In December 1945, Wimbledon’s open race hurdler Ferry Dancer was disqualified in the Christmas Vase. Because he had run 17 clear races, in the interim, he was allowed back into the event – but fought again. However, according to the press, “on January 3, the NGRC, evidently using up the goodwill that was left over from Christmas, decided to ‘give it one further chance’. The owner has been advised accordingly.” The Wimbledon racing office had other ideas and announced in their newsletter ‘the reprieve is not expected to affect the future of Ferry Dancer.”
1993 In an interview with Alan Lennox in The Sporting Life, former industry boss Fred Underhill, now 70, reveals his greatest regrets. The first was the failure of the industry to gain copyright over its results when betting shops first opened in 1961. Underhill states: “We were advised that while copyright probably existed over the publication of race fixtures, this did not necessarily apply to race results. A similar situation arose when Ladbrokes sought to purchase the tracks owned by Greyhound and Totalisator Holdings in 1974. The NGRC could withhold an operating licence from an individual, but not from any given body of individuals such as bookmakers. The legal and associated costs of opposing these and subsequent applications would have been enormous.”