|Bella Kingnarmer suffered a serious injury at TGP in May 2009|
According to an official Arizona Department of Racing Stewards Report dated April 17, 2012, state regulators recently issued a warning to Tucson Greyhound Park over poor track conditions and equipment problems. The Report indicates that a race was delayed due to a starting box "not being worked and or fixed" and states:
"Tucson Greyhound Park Racing Department was warned that 'no race will run from any distance not properly worked, nor will there be time allowed to work the shutes that are not in race ready conditions.' Duties that involve readiness of the track/repair of equipment that is used that night should be addressed early or at a reasonable time that will not interfere with the racing operation."Three days later on April 20, another Stewards Report stated that a "penny sized piece of glass" and "three golf ball sized rocks" were found on the track before a race. A week later, state officials reported finding three more "golf ball sized rocks" on the track along with a "pocket knife sized piece of hard rubber."
It is inexcusable for the track to neglect its racing surface in this way. Even some greyhound trainers are outraged by the track's negligence in this area. As I reported previously, state records indicate that one kennel owner recently reached out directly to state officials to express her frustration:
"Donna Mann called the Stewards off the roof to talk about the out of control injuries. She has a list of 17 injuries which she gave to management, the racing office, and left copies in the racing office."Thanks to the Arizona legislature, Tucson Greyhound Park now has the legal ability to hold fewer races and even end greyhound racing completely. The question now is whether track management will take advantage of this new law, or continue with the cruel status quo.
It's certainly in the track's interest to begin winding down live greyhound racing. If TGP refuses to make changes, in the end the humane community may have no choice but to move forward with a proposal to end all forms of gambling on greyhound racing in the state.