Tuesday 25 April 2017

Fresh efforts to resolve crippling dispute

A group of trainers have organised a meeting in the Maldron Midway Hotel near Portlaoise tonight
A group of trainers have organised a meeting in the Maldron Midway Hotel near Portlaoise tonight
Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

Two separate meetings have been called for this week as the Harold's Cross dispute, which has kept the Dublin tracks closed for eight weeks, rumbles on without any signs of resolution.

A group of trainers have organised a meeting in the Maldron Midway Hotel near Portlaoise tonight (7.0).

Derby-winning trainer Pat Curtin has agreed to chair the meeting which will involve trainers, owners, breeders and stud keepers.

"There are a lot of people in the game in dire straits as a result of the stoppage of racing at Shelbourne," said Curtin.

"We want to have a level-headed discussion. Everybody is supporting the cause and we will be seeking a meeting with the IGB afterwards."

Meanwhile, Ken Mann issued a statement on behalf of the DGOBA yesterday which said: "There will be an open meeting this Sunday at 6pm in the Horse and Jockey Pub in Thurles.

"This meeting will be chaired by Paschal Taggart and speakers include James O'Hanlon (DGOBA), Mick O'Keeffe (DGOBA), Dolores Ruth (GPS), Bill Murphy (IGOBF) and many more.

"We would like to invite all stakeholders and supporters to come along and engage in a meaningful way. We have sent an invitation to the IGB to present their five-year strategy to industry stakeholders."

The dispute is rapidly reaching crisis point for the Irish greyhound industry, with no winners on either side.

The Con & Annie Kirby Memorial is down to the semi-finals stage at Limerick.

Fraser Black's Vancouver Shea remains unbeaten in the €80,000-to-the-winner event and he is now as low as the 5/2 favourite. Coolavanny Pet and Native Chimes are 5/1, with Drive On Tipp 7/1.

Meanwhile, the first sale of the year will be held at Kilkenny on Saturday. Tom Kinane reports that there is a full entry of 80 lots and the first trial will go off at 9am. The weigh-in will commence at 8.30.

Irish Independent

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