As a greyhound racing fan since my age was in single digits, it's quite common - or more likely extremely easy - for me to get excited about big race nights. I’m like a kid at Christmas on a Group 1 night, and well, I’m like a youngster unwrapping chocolate eggs, on Ladbrokes Golden Easter Egg night.
But I thought I'd canvas, and gauge the opinions of some of my friends - people who are also experienced chasing enthusiasts - and get their perception and thoughts on the GRNSW + Ladbrokes Million Dollar Chase series.
These friends come from all walks of life and a variety of industries. Some are trainers, some are owners and some are broadcasters, while a few are street-smart characters who grew up within walking distance of Wenty and forever list their occupation as: 'doing their best.'
I’ll be honest, I thought there may be mixed reviews, that tends to be the case with most things thesedays, but I found myself pleasantly surprised.
Unanimously, they are just as thrilled as I am over this new concept, which, in the world of greyhound racing is not just climbing a mountain, but soaring super sonically into some kind of star-spangled galaxy.
This race through its regional series and city qualifiers has already brought participants together, and it’s doing likewise with people from all spectrums, bringing them together to experience the richest greyhound race ever staged.
This Friday night's card at Wentworth Park surely must be one of the greatest race programs ever assembled at the famous Glebe circuit. I know I have already heard some say it’s the best since the birth of the mechanical lure.
Eight semi-finals of the GRNSW + Ladbrokes Million Dollar Chase, featuring an Olympic standard array of canine athletes competing for a spot on the final grid of this noble sport's new holy grail.
A group of 64 greyhounds, all trained to the minute, each with a one-in-eight chance of reaching the final and the opportunity to race for a $1 million first prize – the largest prize ever offered for a greyhound event in the world - on Saturday night, October 20.
Just under half of the semi-finalists are trained in NSW … can the parochial locals repel the raiders from the South, the Victorians who dominated the city qualifying heats at Wenty? Or will a West Australian or Queenslander shine?
As they in the classics – all these questions and many more will be answered on Friday night at Wentworth Park, on the penultimate night of the inaugural Million Dollar Chase, a night when 64 become eight, those eight then battle to become a part of history.
Is there any place you would rather be this Friday? I don’t think so.