|Managing Director of Cheltenham Racecourse to Step Down|
Tuesday, 24 April 2012 15:28
Edward Gillespie, managing director of Cheltenham Racecourse, is to leave his role at the world-famous venue after 32 years at the helm.
Having been running Cheltenham Racecourse since the age of 27 – in what’s described as one of the longest tenures in British sport – Cheltenham Racecourse managing director Edward Gillespie today announced his decision to stand down from the day-to-day management of the Gloucestershire venue.
Gillespie will continue in his position until a successor is appointed, and then complete a handover period, while he’ll also act as a consultant to Jockey Club Racecourses on various projects – including the next stage of development at Cheltenham Racecourse.
Despite the recession organisers say in 2012 The Festival attracted its largest ever attendance of 236,700 people over the four-day event – up 13,700 from 2011.
Jockey Club Racecourses, which owns Cheltenham Racecourse, will now launch a recruitment process to find Gillespie’s successor from within the racing, sport and leisure industries.
Commenting on today’s announcement Edward Gillespie said: "It has been a privilege to manage Cheltenham for 32 years and striving for the continued success of this special place has been at the centre of everything I have done in that time. Gold Cup Day this year was my 100th Festival day in charge and it was extremely satisfying that it also marked our highest ever attendance, as the climax of a tremendous season at the Racecourse.
"I’m 60 years old in July and, while part of me feels I could carry on forever, I’m conscious that my sporting heroes have bowed out at the top of their game, carrying their bats so to speak. I’ve been here for a long time, so I’d love to get involved in other projects within sport or business in the last few years of my career."