Australia to host first Together for Racing International forum
Following yesterday’s announcement that Rob Hezel and Anna Powell have been appointed as development directors of Together for Racing International (TfRI), Australia will host the first forum under the new banner on April 22 and 23, to bring to life the proposals put forward by the initial project. TfRI was born out of a Newmarket (UK) forum, funded by Godolphin in November, 2019 and facilitated by Chris Grant, who is now stepping down from his role of chairing the global Steering Group.
It welcomed leading participants in racing from the USA, Australia, Japan, Ireland, France, Dubai and the UK. The purpose was to share, collate and deliver a global plan around three key pillars of activity: Education, Community Engagement, and Workforce and Careers. Grant, deputy chair of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic International Development programme, and former CEO of the UK-wide charity, Sported, was at the helm of the first two days of the Newmarket forum, before handing the baton to ITV racing presenter Ed Chamberlin for the final day. The two met up yesterday at the Craven meeting in Newmarket, 18 months after the forum, to discuss progress. “What I loved most about the forum,” recalls Chamberlin, “is that it brought six countries together to share ideas in an industry, if we’re honest, that is full of factions. When those factions come together and unite my goodness this is a powerful sport.”
A pledge was signed at the forum and a steering committee set up. The energy and passion were successfully harnessed and channelled into the collation of the global activity and the launch of a website a year on. Grant said: “As a relative newcomer to the industry, I was impressed by the passion and goodwill displayed by the participants at the forum, and very positively struck by the range and quality of great work already being done around the world. “I believe that TfRI has a clear vision and strategy and a positive and growing reputation. I am sad to be stepping back but equally delighted at the appointment of Rob and Anna who have the skills and connections to take it to the next level.” Hezel, who will continue his role as CEO of the Racing Foundation based in the UK, said: “Without the vision, support and funding from Godolphin to date none of this would have been made possible.
“It is now important to build on the legacy and to establish a structure, funding and governance model, to allow TfRI to contribute to supporting horseracing nations in meeting their social challenges. “TfRI will help to facilitate the sustainability of the sport globally. We have already been able to support Australia with their first forum of this kind being hosted next Thursday, 22 and Friday, 23 April, which is really encouraging to see.” Powell, based in France with 16 years of racing experience both on an international level and more recently in working on the strategy to deliver Great Britain’s first coordinated community engagement strategy, which led to launch of Racing Together, added: “I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to work with Rob on this initiative and believe that one of our biggest priorities in developing the strategy is to engage and unite racing around the world in dealing with the sports’ common social challenges and convince stakeholders of the need to act now to protect the future of our sport.”
More information is available at https:// www.togetherforracinginternational.com/ or follow @TfRI_Education on Twitter.