Land Secured For Tweed Centre Of Excellence 

EXCLUSIVE: The Tweed Heads Coursing Club has secured 32 hectares of land in the first step towards delivering the region a centre of excellence.

Adam Dobbin

7 August 2020

THE future of greyhound racing on the far north coast of New South Wales has received a massive uplift with news that the Tweed Heads Coursing Club has put pen to paper on a parcel of land at Chinderah in the Tweed Shire.

The $2 million purchase for the 32 hectare block of land was rubber-stamped on Friday, paving the way for the Tweed Heads Coursing Club (THCC) and Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) to begin devising a master plan which will deliver a ‘centre of excellence’ racing precinct to the Tweed region.

“I couldn’t tell you how many properties we’ve investigated and conducted due diligence on in the past few years so to settle on this land is very satisfying,” THCC secretary-manager Stephen McGrath said.

“The club’s prime objective was to always reinvest the proceeds from the sale of Border Park back into greyhound racing but the position of the board was that it would only do so if it was under the right terms and in the best interests of the club’s members.

“And while this is only step one it’s a big step. There’s plenty of work to be done as we map out a master plan. But it’s great to finally step into the ring and have the land secured.”

This December will mark four years since the iconic Border Park complex was sold for $15 million to Gold Coast Airport.

Following the sale in 2016, McGrath has remained in constant dialogue with racing officials on both sides of the NSW and Queensland border to ensure the club was on firm footing when embarking on the new development.

“You only get one chance to get it right so the club’s position was never time sensitive,” he said.

“But it was always the club’s preference to reinvest back into the Tweed Shire which will of course create local jobs and contribute heavily into the community.

“As it turns out the land we’ve secured is only seven kilometres away from the old Border Park site. And it’s important the industry is aware that before a brick is turned on the site our club will have spent close to $4 million on the project already.

“It is a significant investment into the future of the industry.”

As to what a centre of excellence may look like, McGrath was straight to the point.

“My utopia is a 400 metre straight track and a circle track with an outside 75 metre radius with distances of 407m, 457m, 507m and a staying trip,” McGrath said.

“With so much land available the precinct has the ability to house a number of other industry initiatives which I’m sure will form part of the master plan as well with GRNSW.”

Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) boss Tony Mestrov declared that the purchase of land is a significant mark in the future of greyhound racing in northern New South Wales.

“It is an incredibly important announcement and critical that greyhound racing has a footprint in Northern NSW, as we have such a large greyhound population and strong participant base in the region,” Mestrov said.

“Not only will this be a state of the art facility with straight and circle racing tracks, but it will also be a greyhound precinct which will provide other services to the industry.

“It will be an exciting time for participants and the industry in the region when the facility is built and greyhound racing proudly returns to the Tweed.”