Geelong Greyhound Racing Club
The greys by the bay
Geelong, Victoria’s second largest city is home to the Geelong Greyhound Racing Club, one of Australia’s largest regional hubs for the sport, based at the Beckley Centre in the Geelong suburb of Corio.
Greyhound racing in Geelong started in 1936 at Nelson Park before moving in 1956 to a new track at Corio Oval, the former home of the Geelong Football Club in the city’s Eastern Park and where the Geelong Greyhound Racing Club was formally established. Then in 1980, the Club moved to its current home at Beckley Park off the Princess Highway in Corio to enjoy a purpose built venue. By 2010, a $10-million-dollar re-development of the grandstand, restaurant, bar and TAB facilities and a world first two track complex configured for both country and city racing formats was completed at what is now called the Beckley Centre. Today, the Club holds over 100 race meetings every year including the Geelong Gold Cup, one of the leading events in Victoria’s greyhound racing calendar.
Who’s who at Geelong Greyhound Racing Club
General Manager: Mr. Ray Bartolo
Chairperson: Mr. Brian Parkinson
Vice Chair: Mr. Mark Pearson
Board members: Jason Sharp, Tom Fiddian and Gary Robb.
The Club employs 5 people full time and up to 14 casual workers on races day while greyhound racing contributes over $17 million annually to the region in wages and buying goods and services locally. Meet the Club’s business partners here.
In the community
The Geelong Greyhound Racing Club is committed to managing its operations with the community in mind and organises and hosts many community events to support worthy local causes and give local groups and residents opportunities to meet and raise funds while having fun.
Geelong Greyhound Racing Club donates to RSL Geelong
On 21st April, as part of Greyhound Racing Victoria’s commemoration of the 2017 RSL ANZAC Day Appeal and its support for RSL, the Geelong Greyhound Racing Club donated $1,000 to Geelong RSL.
Representing Geelong RSL was Senior Vice President Glenn Agnew and his wife Denise. The presentation was made by Geelong Greyhound Racing Club Chairman Mark Pearson.
GRV supports RSL in its worthwhile mission of looking after former and current servicemen and women and their dependents. GRV also support RSL’s ANZAC Day Appeal and encourages its industry participants to be generous to RSL.
Geelong Greyhound Racing Club Chairman, Mark Pearson, presenting a $1,000 donation to Geelong RSL Senior Vice President, Glenn Agnew and his wife Denise, with Handler Brendan Pursell looking on. Race 8 winner was Scooby Who, trained by R Britton.
GRV supports RSL in its worthwhile mission of looking after former and current service men and women and their dependents. GRV also support RSL’s ANZAC Day Appeal and encourages its industry participants to be generous to RSL.
Other GRV Racing Clubs across Victoria have made a similar donation to their local RSL Club. They have offered the use of GRV Club facilities for ANZAC meetings and have invited RSL members to GRV race days, with free refreshments made available.
The Great Chase
This annual event raises money for community groups that work with the aged and disabled and gives their clients a great day out at the races. Since 2003 the Geelong Great Chase Community Days have donated around $20,000 to local community groups.
Community and Fundraising Events
These community events raise money for various causes while bringing together local women involved in greyhound racing to network and to enjoy themselves. The most recent Geelong Girls Night Out event raised $4300 for the Barwon Health Andrew Love Cancer Centre.
Family Fun Days
The Club hosts Greyhound Adoption Program (GAP) adoption days and regular assessments for retiring racers so they can enter GAP.
Beckley Park Community Market
The Club’s home, Beckley Park, also hosts the weekly Beckley Park Community Market with over 150 stalls on Saturdays all year around offering farm fresh fruit and vegetables, deli goods, local handcrafted arts and crafts, household supplies, toys and much more.
WITH an involvement in greyhound racing stemming more than 70 years, it is safe to say that greyhound veteran Aida Spitty has seen some changes in her lifetime. Her earliest memories of the sport include taking her father’s dogs for a run as she rode her bike.
A famous name around the Geelong region, Aida’s father Hugh Emerson has a race named in his honour which is held each year to commemorate his significant contribution to the sport.
Sean, Nicole and Sophie Cachia
Sean had never really followed the greyhounds until one night he and his brother happened to drop in on a race meeting at the Meadows. Sean was so struck by the passion of the winning trainer that he went out and bought a couple of greyhounds straight away, despite no previous involvement in the sport. A decade on, Sean and his wife Nicole are now enjoying increasing success as breeders and trainers with a growing number of wins to their credit – with their young daughter Sophie very much in charge of animal morale for their greyhounds.
Taking a break from work for health reasons, Murray had a bit of time on his hands and after talking to his neighbour Neil Bell, a prominent greyhound trainer, thought he’d get a greyhound himself. When Murray was searching for a racing name for his new dog Gus, his son Ryley suggested Skye’s Apprentice as Gus was great mates with their other dog, Skye, a golden retriever. Although Gus is a very much a family pet first, he’s enjoyed some good wins on the track and Skye and Gus are still the best of mates at home.
Book the Beckley
The Beckley Centre’s well-appointed restaurant seats 200 and is a great venue to celebrate weddings, birthdays and special occasions and for work functions and business conferences and seminars.
Sporting Clubs looking for a fundraiser are a speciality with a special buffet dining rate and race names on sold to sponsors to assist in raising funds for the particular club.
Beckley Park, Broderick Rd, Corio, 3214
Enquiries and bookings: (03) 5275 2298
Club hours: Race Days Tuesday Noon – 8pm and Friday 3pm-11pm; Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 9am-5pm.
- TAB and ATM on premises
- Wheelchair accessible
- Children’s playground
- Free parking
Historically, the people in greyhound racing have always generously shared their expertise with their peers. Tell us your stories. Tell us how you raised your pups so that they are socialised early. Tell us what you do when you put integrity and the welfare of the dog in front of everything you do.
On this page, we’ll share your stories as well as keeping you informed of the latest club’s community news.
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