Special to Reflector-Chronicle
An electrifying auction that resulted in more than $1 million in pup sales brought the curtain down on a highly successful NGA Spring Meet in Abilene, on Saturday, Apr. 27.
“It was an absolutely awesome NGA Meet—one that attendees won’t forget for a long, long time, if ever,” said NGA Executive Director Gary Guccione on Saturday afternoon. “And it was topped off by another tremendous auction--the second million-dollar Spring Meet pup auction in a row.”
Final figures won’t be in for a few days, but a quick tally of the figures from the auction showed an unofficial total of $1,083,350 in pup sales from Friday night and Saturday morning. Of the 311 young pups competing at the NGA Spring Meet Track Stakes, 273 had been consigned to the sale.
The Brood Auction early on Friday evening was also robust, with nearly all of the 31 females consigned selling for an unofficial total of $65,250.
That elevated the gross sale amount to an unofficial figure of $1,148,600. This would not include out-of-ring sales that are generally reported within 48 hours of the auction.
Top sale in the pup auction was $35,000 paid by Lester Raines for Vince Berland’s Flyin Supergiant (NMS Sweet Thing-Flying Ablaze), who posted two impressive second-place finishes in his racing rounds. This included a strong race in the opening round against the meet’s top star, Ken Biehle’s KB’s Try This On (Team Record*-KB’s Autumn Dove), who charted the fastest times in both rounds of the meet, including a near-track record 29.61 time in winning the August/September Two Stake on Friday morning. Biehle had it announced in the ring prior to the sale that KB’s Try This On, who sold to Tom Ferris for $30,000 in the auction, will very possibly be rendered sterile due to a physiological abnormality.
Official and final figures on the auction will be announced in the days ahead and will appear in the next issue of “The Greyhound Review.”
The auction brought to an end another exciting week of NGA activities during the Spring Meet that included such unusual events as a snow-covered Tuesday of racing on Apr. 23. Greyhound aficionados from all over North America--as well as international visitors, such as Mr. and Mrs. Paul Wheeler from Australia and Pat Dalton from Ireland—were among the large throng that attended. Dalton, by the way, was presented the NGA’s Lifetime Achievement Award during an awards ceremony program Thursday night during the Meet. NGA’s annual Rural Rube and Flashy Awards and AGTOA’s All-America Team honors were also presented that evening.
In addition, a fund-raising dinner/auction on Tuesday night at the Hall Of Fame netted a record $46,000-plus for the Abilene museum, which this year is celebrating its golden (50th) anniversary. A large crowd was also in attendance at the traditional Wednesday Night Banquet that honored the Dave and Deb Strickland Family of Abilene. That event was held in the stately and elegant Eisenhower Library Courtyard, just across the street from the Greyhound Hall Of Fame.
NGA Fall Meet dates have been set for Oct. 14-19.