Minister for Racing Denis Napthine today visited the Ballarat greyhound track to inspect progress on the $3.2 million redevelopment which will transform the grandstand and track into a world-class greyhound racing centre.
"Greyhound racing in Ballarat will enjoy a better and brighter future with these major works nearing completion," Dr Napthine said.
"The track will feature the highest quality racing surface, new lure system, new split timing and semaphore board, new lighting and fencing and a water saving irrigation system to ensure the track remains in the safest condition.
"Work is also well underway in overhauling the judges' tower and broadcast facilities, improving access for the public and upgrading the kitchen and bar area for an even better dining experience.
"The Victorian Coalition Government is pleased to deliver this exciting project for Ballarat which is on track for completion in October when the greyhounds will once again take to the track for an exciting night of racing.
"Greyhound racing is already hugely popular with local trainers, families and racing enthusiasts, but after 34 years of running a very busy racing schedule, racing and trialing every week, the time has come to take the region's racing facilities into the future," Dr Napthine said.
Ballarat Greyhound Racing Club Manager Ken Bennett said the new greyhound racing track and improvements to the clubrooms was close to completion and excitement was growing within the racing industry and the Ballarat community.
"The new race track will be a massive benefit to the Victorian racing industry, and the improved function room will be sought for a variety of uses by the local community," Mr Bennett said.
"The support of Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) and the Coalition Government is greatly appreciated and this will enable our club to maintain our strong position in the Victorian Racing Industry."
GRV Chairman Peter Caillard said the industry was excited about the new track as Ballarat's Morshead Park was historically one of the most popular greyhound tracks among punters.
"After a six month redevelopment we look forward to trialing on the brand new track for the first time this Tuesday (September 11) in the lead up to the first official race meeting on October 3 followed by an opening night later that month," Mr Caillard said.
"The upgraded facility will not only benefit race-goers and the local community, but also the greyhounds and trainers with an increased range of distances on offer including 309m, 390m, 450m, 545m and 660m."
The Coalition Government has provided $1.35 million in funding to this redevelopment, GRV has provided $1.7 million, and the Ballarat Greyhound Racing Club has provided $150,000.