STEVE Williams’ Velocity Lodge does not hit the headlines in the manner of the Wheelers and the Hallinans but this quiet achiever was back in the winner’s circle with Velocity Liberty at Wentworth Park yesterday week.
Trained on the south coast at Kanahooka by Robyn Goodwin, Velocity Liberty did not nail the start in her usual style but wrested the lead from Miss Two Up rounding the first turn and won a 520m fifth grade in a nippy 30.26sec.
Williams, who gives the Velocity prefix to only the females he has bred, resides at Hervey Bay on the southern Queensland coast but rears his young greyhounds on 20 acres at Stanthorpe, in the south-east.
Williams, whose best greyhounds have been the champion Glen Gallon and the almost as equally talented Velocity Regina, came into the sport reluctantly.
“As a teenager I had no interest in greyhounds and didn’t like them at all, even when my late father George was training a few,” Williams recalled.
“But when dad suffered a heart attack I had no choice but to help out and walk the greyhounds for him and I’ve been hooked ever since.
“When dad passed away I had to train his dogs and now have 40 greyhounds racing in NSW, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.
“Apart from a few brood bitches which I keep at home, I have a dozen youngsters ready to be broken in and another 60 puppies being reared at Stanthorpe.”
Williams, now 65, once lived in Sydney and remembers visiting the late Frank Holmes at his famous Roccabright Stud, Kellyville, where the great Black Top was the resident sire.
“I learned a lot from Frank Holmes during the 1960s and around that time I would also attend the trial track of the great trainer Stan Cleverley, out at Minto.
“My first venture into having my own dogs was leasing a bitch from Tamworth called Norika Lass, and when mated to Top Bomber she produced winners at Harold and Wentworth Parks, Wollongong and Moss Vale.”
Top Bomber, a son of Black Top, stood at stud at Frank Holmes’ Roccabright property.
Williams has led an interesting and varied life, starting his working life as a boilermaker and then as a structural engineer before opening a coffee shop at Hervey Bay.
“These days I am the proprietor of a business manufacturing equipment for the hospitality industry,” he said.
“I was impressed with Velocity Liberty’s win last week at Wenty because she had to come from behind the early leader to win.
“She is by Fernando Bale from Velocity Sofia and her litter, whelped in April, 2016, are doing well.
“Robyn Goodwin is also training Velocity Liberty’s promising brother Shocked, while Ferdinand has won twice at Cannington.
“Two other siblings, Nakuru and Velocity Anifrid, have already broken their maidens at Ipswich and Albion Park respectively.”
For someone who once disliked greyhounds, Williams has, and still is, reaping remarkable success.
But it would hard to match the feats of his Tony Brett-trained duo Glen Gallon, who won 37 of 71 races including the 2011 Brisbane Cup and 2012 and 2013 Winter Carnival Cups, along with Velocity Regina, whose 24 wins from 51 starts included track record performances in the Darwin and Townsville Cups.