Letter to Texas Racing Commission

Dear Mr. Trout,

We would like to thank the Texas Racing Commission (”TxRC), the Texas Greyhound Tracks and Andrea Young and staff for a successful greyhound meet held at the Valley Race Park (”VRP”).

Bringing greyhound racing back to Texas was very special in of itself and this meet went further than that. The three month “Boutique” meet agreed to was initially met with much skepticism as most preferred the more traditional year round racing format. The year round racing was no longer being run at any of the Texas tracks. With this new format the greyhound industry, as a whole, had a chance to move forward with the times allowing live racing to continue.

The three-month meet was very successful for the greyhound owners and breeders. Thanks to Valley Race Parks cooperation with the Texas Greyhound Association, (“TGA”), the kennels booked at this meet advanced racing to a much better business model for the breeders of the dogs. Most of the kennels booked were owned by either large breeders or groups of smaller breeders and all were Texas residents. This is a bigger advancement for the industry than most realize, as the old way of having a kennel owner who is not a breeder, reaping the rewards without putting into the industry, hurts the breeder. The nonbreeder kennel owner means money paid to this type of owner is not necessarily returned back into the industry. This meet returned most of the money back to active breeders and owners of greyhounds. A non-breeder kennel owner has their concern primarily in how much money a dog is making them where the concern of a breeder/owner lies much more in the return on their investment and allows future investment.

Another great advancement for the industry was running the entire meet starting with all young maiden Texas bred greyhounds. This was also met with much skepticism but ended with a very positive buzz around the country. It leveled the playing field for all breeders and owners, big or small. It allowed breeders and owners to better recoup costs of raising litters very early in the dogs’ career, which is huge for them financially. The meet has created Texas puppy prices to rise along with a demand for them and added interest in non-Texas residents raising dogs here. Thirty-two percent of the dog owners at the Valley meet were non-Texas residents. They had purchased puppies that were already Texas bred.

Not only is this good for business for Texas farms but in preparing for this very competitive meet, money was spent training and schooling pups all over the country that would not have been spent otherwise. Also, while many gamblers were skeptical of the format those who actually tried betting on VRP found great returns because of the young dogs and the Valley tracks reasonable betting minimums.

The TGA and greyhound breeders have taken an even more active role on injuries of the greyhounds as evidenced by the TGA’s Injured Athletes Program. It is vital to have a track surface that is as safe as it can possibly be. The Valley Race Park Meet began with a fantastic surface and the VRP staff welcomed the TGA’s input on maintaining a safe surface, which yielded a very low injury rate.

When anything that is out-of-the-norm is tried there are issues which need to be worked on and improved upon but we are happy to report that the breeders, owners, the tracks and racing fans have benefited greatly by this new kind of meet.

In conclusion, the Valley Race Track meet was very positive and we feel has taken a few giant steps forward for the greyhound racing industry, especially here in Texas. We hope to continue this, which will allow live racing to be viable in the state of Texas for years to come.

Thank you,

David Peck