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18/12/01
Skullduggery at the track

THE SEEDIER side of the Greyhound racing industry was exposed to the harsh glare of public viewing, thanks to the screening of a powerful undercover investigation by journalist Paul Kenyon on the BBC's 'Kenyon Confronts' series.

The programme, screened on Thursday, 6th December, showed how Greyhounds can be drugged to make them more lethargic or to run faster, thanks to a travelling 'medicine man' who visits many of the north's leading Greyhound tracks. More startling still, was the evidence literally unearthed by Kenyon that many Greyhounds are shot dead simply because they do not meet requirements. Less harmful, but still illegally, Kenyon was shown by two breeders how to slow a Greyhound down by feeding it a large meal before a time trials race, so that higher odds could be chalked up against it when it underwent a proper race - at which stage it would not be slowed down by a large meal.

In all, a fascinating but, in places, quite gruesome programme showing man's cruelty to this gentle breed and revealing how millions of punters every year were being ripped off at the tracks.

Paul Kenyon undertook a brave investigation, as he often does, at great personal risk to himself, especially when he confronted the aleged perpetrators of these acts, all of whom denied any such involvement, despite the wealth of film evidence to back up Kenyon's claims at the denouement.

A full review of this programme will appear in next week's issue.