Qld awards night is crucial moment to applaud our youth

\"\"Caption: 2019 Young Achiever Jamie Hosking

By Brisbane Greyhound Club CEO LUKE GATEHOUSE

ON March 19 the spotlight will shine brightly on this State’s top greyhound for 2020. But somewhere in the room that night will sit someone who I will be cheering for just as loudly.

This year’s Queensland 2020 TAB Greyhound of the Year Awards will be held at Victoria Park Golf Club with the top gong being contested by a stellar trio of Classy Ethics, Farmor Beach and Oh Mickey.

Any of these three would be deserved winners and each would fly our state flag with honour. However, every year when these awards are staged there is one other accolade that I follow with special interest – The Young Achiever Award.

Last year it was taken out by Jamie Hosking and no doubt there will be an equally worthy winner this time around. But make no mistake, of all the awards handed out on March 19 this one means the most for the future of greyhound racing – now more than ever.

Our sport is on a steep upward trajectory. Wagering, prizemoney, breeding and public support is on a high that few of us have seen in recent decades.

Our world is changing rapidly and mostly for the better. We also are part of an industry where the majority of the participant are not young.

We all know that and acknowledge it. But for us to adequately take advantage of the positivity that surrounds greyhound racing right now we also need the next generation to be a part of it right now.

These are the people who will best utilise the technological advances that are already a part of what we do. They are also the ones with energy to burn to lift us to the heights that greyhound racing can achieve.

Of course, I am not suggesting that age and experience are suddenly unwanted commodities. We are where we are because of those who have put their blood, sweat and tears into this industry. Experience never has a use-by date.

However, when experience and youth work hand-in-hand the sky is the limit.

So, on March 19 loudly applaud our 2020 champions, but also cheer on the future.

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