By TERRY WILSON
IN its short history the Richmond puppy sales have produced a number of outstanding greyhounds.
And new chief executive officer Richard Griffiths is keen to continue on the tradition in this year’s auction coming up November 29.
The sales were not held last year, but Griffiths is ready to rectify that and has extended nomination closing time in order to attract more lots to go under the hammer.
The puppy sales have already produced the likes of Thirty Talks (purchased in the inaugural sales in 2014), Mister Twister (2015), My Mate Fox (2016) and the most recent Feral Franky.
All those four runners went on to win the Richmond Riches, an event that caters for pups sold at the auction and this year coming up on September 11 (heats on September 4).
This is a Group 2 race and carries $50,000 to the winner.
With so much uncertainty concerning the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, nominations for the puppy sales have been ‘so-so’ and Griffiths and the Richmond board elected to extend noms deadline to the end of September.
“Everyone is sort of a bit out of whack with what has been going on. It has been such a strange year that people may be losing track of time,” said Griffiths.
“So we’re extending nominations and we’re looking for a minimum of 100 lots to go under the hammer.
“Those pups sold will then be eligible for the Richmond Riches Series in 2022.
“We’re trying to promote and encourage it and hopefully we can get uptake and proceed with it.”
Griffiths agreed that there is a problem getting nominations from Queensland and elsewhere with strict border restrictions in place.
The Richmond Riches took its first steps in 2014 when the Richmond Riches Puppy Auction was held.
A total of 325 lots went on offer, yielding a gross amount of $1.4 million. The lure was that pups going through the sale could race in two years’ time for $100,000 in the Richmond Riches race series.
And that inaugural Riches final was taken out by Tony Brett’s Thirty Talks, purchased at the sale for $30,000.
Also coming up at Richmond this month is a regional qualifier for the Million Dollar Chase on Friday, September 18.
The winner gets a place in the Chase semi-finals at Wentworth Park on October 16.
Pictured: Tony Brett, Keith Sternberg and the winner of the inaugural Richmond Riches, Thirty Talks (Photo: Just Greyhound Photos)