The Greyhound Board of Great Britain (GBGB) is pleased to announce that Suffolk Downs Stadium, formerly known as Mildenhall, has today been granted its GBGB licence to race.

Following a series of in-depth inspections by GBGB, the track has demonstrated that it meets all the necessary requirements to protect the safety and welfare of all racing greyhounds on the site.

As part of the inspection process, the stadium and its equipment were inspected for their suitability and safety, including both its track surface and the kennel and paddock areas. Subject to final GBGB conditions being met, trials are set to begin at the track next week with a view to racing commencing on 1 February 2022.

As a GBGB-licensed stadium, Suffolk Downs will be required to undergo regular surveillance inspections and a full annual certification inspection to ensure that it continues to comply with the GBGB Rules of Racing.

Kevin Boothby, Promoter at Suffolk Downs Stadium, said:

“We are absolutely delighted to have secured our racecourse licence and to have the track shortly reopening. My thanks go out to Paul Illingworth and everyone at the GBGB for their support in getting us up and running, under all the relevant requirements and procedures.

“This year, we also have the reopening of Oxford Stadium on the horizon and we will be submitting our application to the GBGB shortly and begin the inspection process there. It’s been a massive community effort to get the two tracks ready and we cannot wait to get them open and racing again.

“The thing I am most grateful for and proud of is the overwhelming support we have received from across the sport. Resurrecting this track has been a long-standing goal of mine and I hope that it signals that our sport is on course for a very bright 2022.”

Commenting on the news, Phillip Law, GBGB Director of Regulation, said:

“I am pleased to be able to grant Suffolk Downs its GBGB licence today, confirming that the team there has successfully met all the regulatory requirements to operate as a greyhound racecourse.

“Following the challenges of the past two years due to the pandemic, this will no doubt be a real boost for the sport and represents the ambition all of us working in British greyhound racing share for its continued success and popularity.

“GBGB staff will be present throughout the initial weeks of trials to ensure everything continues to run smoothly. We wish the track every success as they take their next steps.”

Mark Peacock, GBGB’s Track Liaison Officer, added:

“I was very impressed with what I’ve seen on a track level at Suffolk Downs and a great deal of effort has clearly been put in place to ensure it is in excellent shape to begin trialling and racing.

“I will be working closely with the ground staff there to ensure these standards are upheld going forward and continue to be improved upon, and I look forward to heading to the track again with STRI for their first visit in the coming week.”