Reaching a top speed of 45 miles per hour and able to average over 30 miles per hour the greyhound is the fastest breed of dog.
In greyhound racing, the dogs are handicapped by grade. When a greyhound begins a racing career, it is classified as a maiden, which means a non-winner. It advances to grade C on its first win and with subsequent wins advances up the ladder to the top grade of A.
Greyhound Racing started in England as a sport for the nobility, in 1014, King Canute of England enacted the Forest Laws which meant only nobleman could own or hunt with greyhounds.
Greyhounds weigh on average 70 pounds.
Greyhounds begin racing at 18 months of age and continue until they are four years old.
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The first public coursing club was created in 1776 by the Earl of Oxford, in Swaffham, Norfolk, England. It soon became very popular with the public. The sport originated in the US from competitions organised by farmers in the 1800s. They used greyhounds at the time to control the jackrabbit population that wrought havoc to the crops.
Owen Patrick Smith in 1912 invented the mechanical lure. He opened his first greyhound track in Emeryville, California. Six years later he owned 25 tracks around the country.
The post positions and blankets the dogs wear are coordiated to their race number:
Number 1 is red; number 2 is blue; number 3 is white; number 4 is black; number 5 is orange; number 6 is white and black stripes. See the images to the left.
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