About the Safechase Battery Operated Remote Controlled Greyhound Lure
In 2000, Kelley Covey Group (Tamworth Office) undertook a project to redesign greyhound racing starting boxes for Greyhound Racing NSW. Covey Associates engaged Steriline Racing to develop and manufacture the redesigned greyhound racing starting boxes. For the past 19 years, Covey Engineers and Steriline Racing have been working collaboratively to provide safe, reliable and high-quality infrastructure of the thoroughbred and greyhound racing industry in Australia and internationally.
The Safechase™ Lure system is a joint venture by Covey Associates Engineers and Steriline Racing with a vision to bring greyhound racing to the 21st century. The Safechase™ Lure was designed so that it was a self-contained machine that did not require any infrastructure other than the rail itself. It is a remotely controlled electric vehicle that is powered by modern rechargeable lithium-ion battery technology. With a strategically designed control system and the latest brushless motor technology, the Safechase™ Lure can achieve the extraordinary requirements to match the remarkable greyhound dog speed. The Safechase™ Lure is proudly designed and manufactured in Australia, with service and support out of Mount Barker, South Australia.
The Safechase™ Greyhound Lure system has had safety at the forefront of every design decision especially for the greyhounds that chase it – hence the name. The Safechase™ Lure features the following:
- Advanced lightweight high capacity lithium battery pack which can safety complete up to 50 races (32km) with approximately 30% battery life remaining.
- Charge the battery pack from 30% to full in approximately 3.5 hours with the standard charger or approximately 2 hours with the rapid charger.
- Quick-change battery docking system that takes less than a minute to change a battery.
- Optimised rail guide wheel arrangement for low rolling resistance meaning increased battery life and rapid acceleration.
- Control system designed to have a similar feel of operation to traditional greyound lure systems for ease of driver training and transition.
- Operate the remote control on battery for up to 20 hours per charge or with a direct plug pack into a standard wall socket.
- Programmable auto-start feature to match individual track requirements.
- Internal data logging system for tracking run time and total distance travelled.
- Secure and reliable radio system with dual high gain antennas which provides a safe 500m range.
- Regenerative braking embedded into the control system (a brake that converts the kinetic energy into extended battery life)
- Remote-controlled hydraulic emergency brake with an adjustable braking force which is capable of safely stopping the lure from race speed (66km/h) in less than 30m.
- Automatic brake activation for the end of straight tracks.
- Remote-controlled high intensity LED locality lighting for assistance with poor visibility on bad weather days.
- Robust design to handle the varied Australian climatic conditions and exposure to rain and sand kicked up by racing greyhounds.
- End of straight track emergency impact buffers successfully tested to 70km/h.
- Fully customisable lure arm dependent on the individual greyhound track requirements.
- Can be retrofit to any Australian rail but can also be customised if an alternative rail profile has been utilised.
Some of the many benefits over the traditional cable and live electric contact systems include:
- Countless savings based around revenue loss due to failures as all tracks are supplied with 2 Safechase™ Greyhound Lures and they are interchangeable in a matter of minutes in comparison to the traditional systems where a failure could see the loss of a whole race meeting.
- A reduction of up to 50% in maintenance and operational costs over 5 years.
- Removes the safety and animal welfare issue of a 70km/h cable failure at the perimeter of the track.
- Reduced infrastructure for new tracks by not requiring cable rollers every 3m and avoiding 3 phase power demand for a 30-45kW electric motor.
- Less track length and therefore capital required for straight tracks due to the minimal run-up required for acceleration and braking.
- Safechase™ Greyhound Lure can navigate tight rail curves of down to 14m radius without jeopardising acceleration rates meaning limited land required for straight track run-ups.
- Infrastructure is safe from vandalism as the Safechase™ Greyhound Lure is easily removed from the track at the end of each race day.
- Allows easy use of the inner oval/space where available or required.
- The Safechase™ Greyhound Lure system uses approximately 87% less energy than the cable system which saves on running costs and delivers a reduced carbon footprint.
- Clean operation with no rail or track contamination (grease).
- Future options utilising the on-board power supply for lure cam (live broadcasting), artificial noise and additional lighting.