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Sport Recreation

World-First Launch of Advanced Welfare Technology Tool for NSW Trainers

GRNSW 2 mins read
(Left to Right) GRNSW Chief Executive Officer Rob Macaulay and NSW Greyhound Breeders, Owners & Trainers Association Chief Executive Officer Daniel Weizman at Wentworth Park.

Sydney, May 24 - A world-first technology rollout for greyhound trainers is being launched under a joint track safety and greyhound welfare venture by Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) and the NSW Greyhound Breeders Owners & Trainers Association (GBOTA) in Sydney.

Starting on July 1 at NSW's premier track, Wentworth Park, trainers will be able to utilise advanced biomechanical gait analysis technology for their greyhounds. In 30 seconds, and for no cost, trainers will be able to use the system with their dogs and be handed the full diagnostics for their consideration.

The system utilises a treadmill and software system to obtain comprehensive kinetic gait analysis for dogs - and gives trainers a detailed report in real time.

"It will help detect underlying, not-yet-visible injuries, leading to further advances in injury detection and greyhound welfare," said GRNSW CEO Rob Macaulay.

"Importantly, we expect that this technology will be able to assist trainers in early detection of pre-patent hock injuries, well before they are visible to even an experienced expert.  

“Anything that the sport can do to provide the latest technology to assist trainers in monitoring the conditioning of their dogs for optimum performance is a great outcome.

"We believe it can assist with better racing, with the potential for fewer race injuries and better placements of greyhounds. It's a tool for trainers to use. To see the machine in action is to be at the cutting edge of technology and innovation in real-time scientific analysis of body rhythms and traits."

German company Zebris has developed the CanidGait analysis system that brings biomechanical gait analysis technology to veterinary medicine. 

The system utilises a treadmill platform equipped with a calibrated pressure sensor matrix and synchronised cameras. Software delivers scientifically sound and valid gait parameters with analysis including contact forces, pressure distribution patterns, step lengths, gait cycle lengths, speed, cadence, stance, swing-phase distribution and the trajectory of the centre of pressure during movement. 

Greyhound trainers will receive a detailed analysis report featuring numerical values, bar graphs, contact force curves for each leg, and a cross-leg diagram, making it easy to detect an otherwise invisible lameness, and identify gait types and monitor therapy efficiency by comparing results from multiple records. 

The GBOTA and GRNSW are providing the technology to all trainers at no cost, marking a significant technology step forward in the industry's commitment to greyhound welfare and safety.

The technology will be available for use by trainers at all Wentworth Park trials from July 1, starting at Wentworth Park on Tuesdays and during "after the last" trials.

GBOTA CEO Daniel Weizman said: "GBOTA puts the safety and welfare of our greyhounds as our first priority.

“We are very pleased to announce this world-first initiative. The Zebris technology is undoubtedly the best in the world, and it's the first time this has been introduced to racing greyhounds on track for the use of owners and trainers.

“We look forward to getting it in operation at Wentworth Park for all trials commencing July 1."

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