The Victorian greyhound racing spotlight shines on Bendigo on Saturday.
Bendigo’s Lord’s Raceway will host the Greyhound Racing Victoria Ready 2 Race Sales.
Former St Kilda and North Melbourne midfielder Nick Dal Santo is the ambassador for the auctions.
The Bendigo Pioneers and Sandhurst product is now experiencing the thrill of greyhound ownership with his greyhound namesake Nicky Dal and co-owner, Jay White.
White, a fanatical North Melbourne supporter, named Nicky Dal after the silky midfielder.
Dal Santo had been made aware of the greyhound and had naturally been following his progress as his career began to take shape.
So keen was Dal Santo’s interest in the dog that he got in contact with White, asking if he could come on board as a part owner.
White was only too happy become involved in a joint venture with the three-time All-Australian.
Trained in Cranbourne by White’s sister Tricia Curtain, the stunning blue dog has had 33 starts for seven wins and 10 minor placings, accumulating more than $13,000 in prizemoney.
One of his most impressive victories was at Cranbourne in July, which saw him lead from start to finish from box three.
“I have been following Nicky Dal’s career from afar so I am stoked to become involved as a part owner,” Nick Dal Santo said.
“Being involved in owning a racing greyhound is a great experience and I recommend it to anyone.”
Dal Santo, who played 322 AFL games for the Saints and Roos, will be attending Saturday’s Ready 2 Race Sales.
A big crowd is expected to flock to Lord’s Raceway to check out some of the best young dogs in the state.
Greyhounds purchased at the sales are eligible to compete in the $18,000 Ready 2 Race Final at Sandown Park (515m), open to the top eight prize money earners and to be held during the Melbourne Cup Carnival in November, 2017.
The top eight prize money earners from the sales are also eligible to compete in the $7,250 Mid-Year Ready 2 Race Special Event (425m) to be held during the Bendigo Cup Carnival in July, 2017.
The top prize money winner from last year’s sales is Wet and Wild, who has scooped up $19,570 after being purchased for $3000.
More than $43 million in prize money is distributed throughout Victorian greyhound racing each year, including more than $900,000 across races limited to Victorian-bred greyhounds.
The daytime auction at Lord’s Raceway starts at noon on Saturday, with a gala night auction to follow from 6.30pm for the 50 fastest performers out of last weekend’s heats.