• 05/11/2018 2:29 PM | Anonymous

    Each month GOTBA Vic provides a short note for inclusion in GRV’s Greyhound Monthly.  This month’s report was rejected by GRV, without reason. 

    It read:

    If GRV receives wagering income of $68m a year, how much of that should GRV spend on returns to participants (prize money, starter fees and bonuses)? On infrastructure? On staff? On its integrity function? Now what about if GRV has income of $90m or even $100m?

    As I said in last month’s report, what matters to GOTBA Vic, irrespective of change, is that all participants are fairly treated and fully rewarded for their participation and success.

    What GRV spent on participant returns and infrastructure in 2012/13 on income of $68m and in 2016/17  on income of $90m (latest available figures) may surprise you. 

    In November 2018, GOTBA Vic will release an analysis of participant returns and GRV infrastructure spend using GRV’s own reported figures. We have made a comparison between GRV and Racing Victoria Limited.  While much has changed in our industry since 2012/13, and GRV does many things well, what we can say with absolute confidence is that GRV now simply does not return a satisfactory proportion of its income to participants. Its infrastructure spend is low. 

    That needs to change.  Participants in 2018 race more and have more costs imposed on their participation. We are pressing for fairness. Participants must get a better return.  Your voice helps us do that.

    You can expect more analysis and action in future from us, as well as help. 

    [GOTBA Vic AGM paragraph not reproduced here]

    GOTBA Vic is committed to being an open, transparent organisation for its members, one that enhances and projects the voices and interests of greyhound racing participants at every level for the benefit of all of them.  We best do that by hearing from you and from your active membership with us.

    GOTBA Vic's more detailed report on GRV spending, using GRV's own figures, will soon follow.  

    Some highlights (or lowlights...):

    • Participant share of wagering income has decreased from just under 60% in 2008/09 to 47% in 2016/17 (last available figures) – in today’s terms that difference is almost $13m in annual prizemoney;   
    • GRV annual wagering income (TAB and race fields)  has increased from $68.6m in 2012/13 to $91m in 2016/2017 (and, we understand, almost $100m in 2017/18);
    • GRV’s expenditure on itself, particularly employees, has exploded: GRV’s ‘other expenses’ (excluding participants returns and infrastructure) has ballooned from $14.6m in 2008/09 and $20.3m in 2012/13 to $50.3m in in 2016/17.
    You and your greyhounds deserve better.  You have borne costs associated with changes to this industry too.  You are not being properly compensated for doing so.

    For further information, see my attached letter, which I encourage participants to share - GOTBA Vic - President’s Report - Nov 2018.pdf

    Lynton Hogan

    GOTBA Vic President.

  • 24/10/2018 8:19 PM | Anonymous

    GOTBA VIC will hold its annual general meeting at Sandown Greyhound Racing Club from 6pm on Sunday 18 November 2018. Registration will commence from 545pm.  Non members can join on the night.

    We will discuss the year ahead and key initiatives to advance the interests of participants. More info will follow on content of the meeting.

    Nominations for committee positions will be open until 4 November to members of more than 12 months.  Nomination forms here - GOTBA Committee Nomination Form.pdf and should be returned to the committee by email to or as noted in form, 14 days before the meeting.

    2018 GOTBA AGM Flyer.docx 

  • 22/10/2018 8:22 PM | Anonymous

    GOTBA Vic has made a submission to GRV on its recent Hot Weather and Transport Policy changes.

    In it we set out our approach to rule and policy changes generally and, of course, comment on the proposals.

    We are concerned that GRV proposes changes that do not align with the Code of Practice for the Keeping of Racing Greyhounds, without telling you (or us) why.  That should not happen. Transport policy in the Code, for example, was subject to active discussion and negotiation between participants, vets and other stakeholders. We are also concerned that some changes made by GRV do not take into account how participants race greyhounds, especially coursing.

    The submission is attached - GOTBA Vic - Submission.docx.

    GOTBA Vic Committee

  • 24/09/2018 10:09 AM | Anonymous

    At GOTBA Vic's most recent committee meeting, Sandra Reed stepped down as President, and now takes on the role as one of the Vice Presidents, with Rob Britton.  For many years, Sandra has provided driven leadership that has obtained results: the Committee thanks her for her time as President.

    Lynton Hogan, formerly a Vice President, is the new President of the association.  

    In 2018/19 GOTBA Vic will be both active and visible in many areas: from assistance to participants in the lead-up to the January 2020 commencement of the Code of Practice for the Keeping of Racing Greyhounds to advocating forcefully for participants’ interests with GRV (and others) in matters as diverse as grading, breeding, licensing and disciplinary matters, planning issues and (in particular) increasing the economic returns of all participants.

    GOTBA Vic is committed to being an open, transparent organisation for its members, one that enhances and projects the voices and interests of greyhound racing participants at every level for the benefit of all of them.  

    We best do that by hearing from you and from your active membership with us.

  • 17/07/2018 12:18 PM | Anonymous

    The Victorian Government has recently released draft amendments to the Racing Act that reform the integrity and disciplinary structures applying to greyhound racing and propose more powers for GRV.

    GOTBA Vic provides a note to members and its position on the draft changes - GOTBA - Note - 2018 Racing Act amendments.pdf

    Central to our response - it is time for permanent participant voices to return to the GRV Board - see attached.

    GOTBA Vic Committee

  • 26/03/2018 9:55 AM | Anonymous

    GOTBA Vic's 2018 Supanite  is coming up soon, on 12 April at Sandown.  A night for members and sponsors to meet, discuss and catch up on issues in what has been a busy time in greyhound racing.

    The committee would love to see you there.  Here's the flyer - SupaNite 2018.pdf

    Book a dining package through Sandown to attend and we'll see you there!

    Cost - Buffet: Adult $40, kids 6-14yrs $15, 15-17 $25.  Buffet with drinks package included $65.  For trainers with greyhound racing on night, buffet is $15.

    There are a number of prizes and opportunities for members on and before the night.  One of the big events is a silent auction of 6 breaking-in spots - 2 from each of Keyon Kennels, Doctors Kennels and Casbrakay Kennels. Members can participate in the auction by sending in bids before 9 April, but then also on the night itself, by filling in and returning the  Auction Form - Final.pdf

  • 09/03/2018 12:06 PM | Anonymous

    Here - GOTBA Vic Release - 2018 GAR amendment - 8 March 2018.pdf - is our submission to GRV in response to it seeking comment on recent GAR changes.  Those changes relate to a number of rules/definitions, including the prohibited substance definition.

    To us, the proposed amended rules say quite a lot about how Australian greyhound racing regulators treat their participants. We are particularly concerned at how national rules can get made without wide-based, prior, participant-level national consultation occurring. At the end of the day, we participants are the ones who have to try and follow these rules.

    We are actively considering what further follow up is appropriate to address our concerns.


    9 March 2018

  • 30/01/2018 9:09 AM | Anonymous

    There are more industry issues and regulator proposals that GOTBA addresses each year, on top of assisting members with personal racing related issues and attending to general business. 2017 was no exception. 

    Members of the Committee collectively donated many hundreds of hours of work on the draft Code of Practice this year, in the form of phone calls, writing of reports and attendance at meetings/workshops conducted by DEDJTR, GRV and various other Departments.  It has been all consuming, particularly for Committee Members Sandra Reed, Lynton Hogan, Robert Britton and Geoff Miles, and all the time given is voluntary.  Whilst there are still some requirements that we are not happy with and are still trying to have addressed, the endeavours of the Committee are a major reason why the latest draft is a significant improvement on the one released for public comment. 

    The work on the draft COP conducted by GOTBA will ultimately be to the benefit of ALL participants, not just Members. GOTBA is consulted as the Association can offer insights and advice that other organisations, committees and groups are unable to, which is why GOTBA's work is so critical. 

    In addition to the work on the draft COP, in 2017 the Committee was actively involved in providing input and feedback via phone calls, liaising with participants, writing reports and attending meetings:

    • on Skills Australia’s Greyhounds Project – National Training Package
    • to the Department of Justice regarding the Bittar report
    • to GRV on the Proposed Prizemoney & Breeding Package
    • to GRV on the Proposed New and Amended Registration Requirements
    • to Department of Planning regarding the on-going “right of use” prior to the release of the Planning Guidelines

    In addition, GOTBA Victoria provided members to sit on the following GRV Committees/Groups:

    • Helping Hand Fund
    • Finish on Lure Working Party
    • Industry Consultation Group

    and ran the following workshops:

    • Reward Based Lure Systems
    • Code of Practice Submission Help Days.

    What else did GOTBA work on in 2017?

    • In response to Member complaints, GOTBA:
      • successfully lobbied GRV to return to using the previous supplier of stretch vests,
      • identified an anomaly in the way points are allocated for 300+ ranking meetings and queried the method with the Grading Department, ensuring the issue was added to the grading review list, 
      • successfully argued for DNA requirements to be relaxed for new broods to allow females in season to have the DNA application made and still be served before their pink card was issued.
    • In response to our wider concern regarding reduced breeding, our suggestion to GRV for a short-term fee waiver for pink card applications and DNA kits was implemented.  
    • In direct response to the unfairness stemming from the vast number of cobalt and ketamine positive tests ending up in disqualifications for members and participants, GOTBA lobbied hard over an extended time for Stewards to soften penalty recommendations to the RADB from disqualification to suspension and fines, particularly for first time drug offences. 
    • GOTBA firmly believes in a breeder reward scheme, provided it rewards excellence in breeding based on actual results on the track.  In response to repeated GRV concerns surrounding reduced breeding, GOTBA repeatedly advised that a breeder bonus system should be brought back to assist with stimulating quality breeding.  It was very pleasing to see a breeder bonus return in the prize money proposals mid-year and then be implemented on the back of GOTBA's, members and participant feedback.

    Not a bad result for a small group of passionate volunteers!

    Looking forward to 2018, GOTBA will be a key member of the working party, along with GRV and the Clubs, whose purpose is to develop templates for use by participants to comply with Code of Practice requirement, and plan to run Code of Practice seminars for Members in preparation for implementation. In addition, the Committee will devote time to addressing the shortcomings in the Planning Guidelines and will also have a Member sitting on the Racing Reference Group.

    We are proud of the work done on behalf of our members, greyhound racing and all participants and would like to take the time to thank those members who contribute to the ongoing improvement of the sport by joining the Association and supporting the GOTBA Committee.

  • 16/10/2017 1:26 PM | Anonymous

    GOTBA Vic advocates for its owner, trainer and breeder members.

    Financially, Victorian greyhound racing is thriving.  Money pours into GRV from an ever-increasing race wagering market share and our members provide the means for this to occur.  After significant GRV focus in the past 3 years on other matters, it is well past time for greater regular financial return to all levels and categories of participant to become a major, continuing GRV priority if it wants to arrest any slide in participation.  

    GRV’s original prizemoney and breeding package was obviously inadequate – see the GOTBA original proposal submission.  The amended version is better - but we think there is still room for improvement.

    In short, our issues with and comments on the amended proposal:

    1.      Of the two options, option 1 is preferred.  This option focusses comparatively more on Level 3/Tier3 increases, and we expect will benefit a wider proportion of participants than Option 2.


    2.      The overall prizemoney increase needs to be at least the $2.83m originally proposed.  The revised proposal increases annual prizemoney by only $2.55m.  We appreciate that the breeder package has changed (but not necessarily increased, see below), but this is no reason to reduce the original prizemoney increase given the greater revenue flowing into GRV.


    3.      Breeder package (VicBred) amounts must always be paid. Importantly, GRV’s amended breeder proposal is not really to pay $1.40m annually to VicBred owners and breeders.  The reason: VicBred dogs will not win all of the planned races, GRV will only pay half the scheduled amount if a VicBred greyhound runs 2nd or 3rd and none of the scheduled amount if no VicBred dog places.  On the GRV proposal, a significant part of the $1.4m annual amount will not be paid at all and will be retained by GRV.


    In GOTBA Vic’s view, the entire $1.40m pool must be paid out, each year, to owners and breeders. That amount is less than was paid under the GOBIS annual breeding package payments before it ceased. There are several possible ways to do this:


    (a)    Each quarter, as unpaid funds accrue, apply unpaid funds to several VICBRED ONLY events at provincial tracks in which moneys are then paid out (preferably past the 1st 3 placegetters); and/or


    (b)   Pay 100% of the allocated bonus amount to the VicBred greyhound that finishes 2nd or 3rd an is the first VicBred dog (ie rather than 50%); and/or


    (c)    Each quarter, redistribute unpaid amounts into the general prizemoney pool (not preferred).


    4.       Starter fees.  It is appropriate to focus now on prizemoney and breeder payments, before any increase to current starter fees.  But future prizemoney increase models should continue to consider whether starter fee levels are appropriate at that time – those fees form part of a responsible revenue distribution model.


    Conclusion and the next step for prizemoney


    GOTBA Vic wants to see further prizemoney increases – this package must only be the first step.


    We are also want to see prizemoney proportions for 1st, 2nd and 3rd come closer to 65% to the winner, 20% for 2nd and 15% for 3rd by increasing lower place prizemoney over the short to medium term. 


    Participation in this sport is best enhanced through positive return and incentive to owners, breeders and trainers.  Costs are borne by each and those costs have increased.  Our regulator needs to realise this and take action accordingly.  We, and our members, will be watching and acting to ensure this occurs.


    GOTBA Vic Committee

    16 October 2017

  • 06/09/2017 10:50 AM | Anonymous

    Thank you to all those Members who responded to last week's Survey on GRV's Prizemoney Proposal.  On the back of the responses received, the Committee were able to write a very detailed submission on the Proposals.

    Whilst supporting, in theory, the increases to starters fees and prize money as well as the introduction of breeder bonuses, GOTBA found that the accompanying reduction in the majority of prize-money levels unacceptable and actually counter productive to GRV's stated aims of improving returns to owners and trainers of greyhounds at all levels of racing and encouraging breeding.

    GOTBA would like to see expanded detail on the breeder rights part of the proposal, mindful that a breeder may in fact be unfairly penalised for results that are beyond their control if the proposal was adopted as is. 

    The re-introduction of breeder bonuses is a great initiative but we are concerned at how many eligible "Vic Bred" races will actually be programmed.

    To read the full submission, please click on the link below.

    GOTBA Submission to GRV re proposed prizemoney etc changes.pdf

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