Nationals Scrapped For Second Straight Year

ONGOING uncertainty around the always evolving Covid-19 crisis will see the National Championships cancelled for a second straight year.

Adam Dobbin

27 July 2021

ONGOING uncertainty around the always evolving Covid-19 crisis has seen the National Championships cancelled for a second straight year, Greyhound Clubs Australia (GCA) announced on Tuesday. 

The Group 1 National Sprint and Distance Grand Finals were scheduled to be run at The Meadows on Saturday, August 28.

But with concerns escalating around ongoing travel restrictions, border closures and lockdowns, GCA has decided that cancelling the event was the most prudent course of action.

Adding to the decision was the fact that New Zealand’s participation in the series had been scuppered due to heightened if not impossible logistical challenges.

“With many parts of Australia dealing with lockdowns, restrictions and border closures, the hosting of the Nationals has become increasingly problematic and impossible to assure the safety of all our participants,” GCA Chairman Les Bein said. 

“If you include greyhounds earning wildcard entries, up to 14 of the Grand Finalists would be required to travel  from interstate or New Zealand adding further layers of complexity.

“The overriding health message is to reduce mobility and the opportunity of virus transfer, so the last thing we  want to do is contribute to settings that require travel and movement of greyhounds and their connections at such  a precarious time.”

The perceived optics of staging a series which encourages what can be considered unnecessary travel was another key reason for the decision.

Earlier this month, GCA announced that it was scrapping the support activities associated with the Nationals due to ongoing health concerns associated with Covid-19.

Now the race series itself has followed.

It’s expected that where possible, states and territories will still look to stage local championships for the benefit of participants.