Elsons winning on-off the track
By TERRY WILSON
IT is going to be difficult for the Elson greyhound clan to repeat what they achieved in the 2019 racing season when Racing Queensland’s annual awards for this year are finalised.
For the 2019 season Cyndie Elson was named Trainer of the Year as well as Owner of the Year in partnership with her husband Bill.
Son Travis also lifted some trophy rewards when he was named Queensland Racing Integrity Commission Welfare Award.
The latter award concerned attention given to greyhounds that had finished their racing careers and were put through the Greyhound Adoption Program.
Travis, who is based at Yandina Creek on the northern tip of the Sunshine Coast, is pretty proud of his Welfare award, which was handed out at the recent 2019 Greyhound Of The Year function.
“I got it (the award) because of the greyhounds I send through the adoption program,” he said.
“I was told the award came from recommendations from three different areas, like staff and stewards, and the way the dogs were presented to the adoption program was the biggest winner.
“I make sure they are well prepared for life away from the tracks and the kennels.
“I have won awards but this one is special because it’s all about the recognition. It’s not just about winning, but what comes afterwards.”
Travis said he has put about 30 greyhounds through the adoption program and every single one of them has been adopted out.
“One of them has an Instagram account and has 1500 followers,” he said.
“The dog’s name was Buggsy and raced as Summer’s Bug. He won 28 races and was a pretty good dog.
“Do I get a kick out of seeing them do well as pets? Oh yes.
“They’re awesome and we have three that live in our house.”
As Chase went to print, Travis was well placed to finish top three in the Brisbane Greyhound Trainers premiership for this year.
He was third, albeit a fair way behind the leader, his mother Cyndie, who is based at Churchable.
She is going for back-to-back Brisbane trainers and owners premierships.
And Cyndie could easily land another gong, that of Dam of the Year with Cyndie’s Magic, a daughter of Regal Silver which held Dam of the Year title for four years.
The Elsons race regularly at Albion Park and Ipswich and it was only last month that Cyndie led in a treble at The Creek.
She is understandably proud of what son Travis has managed.
“I thought his (QRIC) award was wonderful because he thinks a lot of his dogs,” she said.
But, as mothers can do at times, she let slip about another part of 39-year-old Travis’s career.
“Travis was an Australian champion kickboxer – and so was his wife Hope. She was an intercontinental champion.
“And Travis’s brother Warren was a world champion and defended his title three times in Thailand.”
But back to greyhounds and Travis was asked what has been behind the rise of the Elsons as trainers.
“Nothing in particular,” Travis said.
“We breed all our own dogs. Dad (Bill) and I got into dogs together (he started before I was born).
“We found the right breed line and once we found that we stuck to it.
“Thirteen years ago we went to a Dapto auction and bought a couple of bitches for breeding.
“One was from Wongawillicath and the other was from Wongawillisue. We raced them then began the breeding processes.”
Caption: Travis Elson with just some of the family’s ‘booty’ from the recent Queensland awards night (Photo: Box 1 Photography