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Bunny Chasers opens in Wellington

15 February 2006

Bunny Chasers opens in Wellington

Wellington photographer, Victoria Birkinshaw will exhibit her photographic study on greyhound racing next week at the Mary Newton Gallery in Wellington after spending the past 12 months traveling around New Zealand greyhound tracks capturing the magical moments of greyhound racing.

“Prior to starting this project, I’d been driving past the Hutt Park racetrack for years wondering what goes on in there. After accidentally switching onto greyhound racing on TV one night, I became quite fascinated with the speed and agility of the dogs and the interaction between the trainers and their dogs. I really wanted to find out what drove people’s involvement in the sport and this became an important aspect of the project,” said Victoria.

“There is a certain romance to greyhound racing – people training a dog to a level where it is able to go out on to the track alone, without someone on its back, using its instincts and win a race. And of course there’s the money. Large stakes can be involved,” she said.

Lance Bickford, Chief Executive, Greyhound Racing New Zealand said he was looking forward to seeing the exhibition on Tuesday.

“We are very proud to have Victoria using our sport for her project. Greyhound racing is very entertaining and we hope that through her exhibition more people will see what a unique and exciting sport it is. We would like to see more people become involved in it and share the passion that all the participants have,” he said.

Victoria says that her experience with the project has been amazing.

“There is a genuine rapport and so much affection between the animals and the trainers. Admittedly, before this project I thought greyhounds were ‘snippy’ animals but I’ve certainly been proved wrong. They are caring and docile animals and I’m looking forward to becoming more involved now even after the project is completed,” she said.

The results of Victoria’s subsequent visits to racing tracks in Wanganui, Palmerston North, Manakau City, Lower Hutt and Christchurch will be on view at the Mary Newton Gallery, 150 Vivian Street, Wellington, in an exhibition entitled Bunny chasers opening on Tuesday 22 February, 5:30pm


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