Tamworth Greyhound Racing Club president Robert Munn said he had a "gut feeling" that the track could be shut down as the sport battles to continue racing through the coronavirus crisis.
The Tamworth track along with Moree is slated to close temporarily under measures announced by Greyhound Racing NSW late on Monday.
Designed "to continue racing in the safest possible environment", seventy percent of racing venues across the state are set to close under the plan. The plan will also see the lock down of seven strategically selected zoned regions outside of Sydney with Gunnedah to become the hub for racing in the New England.
The latest measures follow restrictions put in place last week limiting attendance at race meetings to only essential personnel.
GRNSW Chief Executive Officer Tony Mestrov said strict biosecurity measures would also be stringently enforced at the 10 tracks allowed to continue racing, including no more than 50 participants at venues at any given time.
To limit travel, participants will only be able to race in their zoned region at one of the following tracks: Bathurst, Bulli, Dapto, Dubbo, Richmond, Grafton, The Gardens (Newcastle), Goulburn, Gunnedah and Wagga Wagga.
Munn said he wasn't too surprised by the news.
"You take each day as it comes," he said.
"I had a gut feeling around the weekend that we could be facing this sort of thing."
"We're meant to be racing the next two Saturdays."
"I sort of started telling a few people close by that I would be very doubtful that we would be racing by the weekend the way things were progressing.
When he spoke to The Leader on Monday night, he had "very minimal information".
"I found out by social media to be honest, which then triggered me to check my email and there was an email there," he said.
It didn't really say a lot but he said GRNSW had said they would get back to all clubs on Tuesday.
No date has been specified and Munn is treating the closure as "indefinite".
It is another blow for the TGRC with the annual Tamworth Cup carnival, which was to get underway this weekend, postponed to June, although, as Munn commented, in hindsight that was a good decision.
While disappointed,he said he can understand why GRNSW have taken this latest step.
"It's totally understandable what they have done. The quicker we can isolate this issue and get over it, the quicker everyone will be better off," he said.
"But it's unfortunate the situation we're in now."
Under the plan, racing will also be paused at Wentworth Park for the immediate future to avoid any exposure to metropolitan Sydney, and all feature races on the GRNSW calendar will be put on hold.
A new calendar will be in operation from Wednesday with GRNSW working on staging around 15 meetings a week.
Biosecurity measures have also been increased at the venues still racing. As well as restrictions of no more than 50 participants at the venue at any one time, the measures also include: No interstate greyhounds or trainers will be permitted to race in NSW, new protocols to permit a trainer, where appropriate, to leave the course after they have raced, with prior approval from GWIC, introduction of a new pre-race kennelling procedure with designated times for each race kennelling including protocols of four square metres per person in an enclosed space, GRNSW to work with clubs on providing basic take away food/drink offerings at race meetings and the use of one designated toilet block at race tracks.
Trials are able to continue at all tracks but must be booked.
"Like every business across the country, we have had to be decisive and do everything possible to continue operations while protecting the safety of all concerned. We feel the plan we are putting in place serves two very important purposes," Mestrov said.
"Firstly, it strengthens our biosecurity measures significantly, in the battle to contain the spread of COVID-19. Right throughout this worrying time for everyone, our number one priority and focus has been the health and safety of our participants and staff.
"Secondly this allows our participants to continue to race, which means they can continue to work. For many, if not most of our thousands of participants, this is their livelihood and only form of income. We cannot underestimate how critical it is for both the livelihoods of our participants, and the economies of regional NSW, that we work out a way to continue to race."