The Irish Greyhound Board (IGB) today welcomed the decision of government to permit greyhound racing behind closed doors as part of the second phase of the Roadmap for Re-opening Society and Business.
The IGB has arranged for a comprehensive schedule of greyhound trials to commence on Monday next, 8th June at all 14 greyhound tracks with the intention of returning to racing behind closed doors early in the week commencing 15th June 2020.
Frank Nyhan, Chairman of the Irish Greyhound Board, stated
“we very much welcome the government decision today which allows the greyhound industry to make the necessary arrangements for the resumption of greyhound racing. This is critical for the wider industry and to support jobs across our stadia network, greyhound owners, breeders trainers and a wide range of support services. The loss of racing for the twelve-week period has impacted on the greyhound industry similar to all other industries during this difficult period.
We will continue to put public health considerations at the forefront of our activities and very detailed protocols and response plans have been prepared by the IGB for operating in the current environment. The preparation of our stadia and tracks has been completed to facilitate a resumption of greyhound racing in line with Covid 19 protocols.
I would like to acknowledge the support of Minister Creed and his officials at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine in what has been a difficult period for all associated with the greyhound industry’’.
During the suspension of greyhound racing, the IGB put in place a COVID-19 Greyhound Care Payment Scheme which provided a subsistence payment in respect of 6,647 greyhounds to ensure that the care and welfare needs of racing greyhounds were fully addressed during the period of suspension. Expenditure on the scheme will be of the order of €1.3m.
The IGB looks forward to working with the greyhound community in the coming weeks to ensure the wellbeing of all those attending at our greyhound tracks.
A detailed racing schedule behind closed doors will be published by the IGB in the coming days.