Hezel, Powell Join Together For Racing International

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(l-r), Rob Hezel, Anna Powell & Chris Grant | Together For Racing International

Rob Hezel, Racing Foundation CEO, and Anna Powell have joined Together for Racing International (TfRI) as Developmental Directors, the organisation announced on Wednesday.

TfRI, which was created following a Newmarket forum funded by Godophin in 2019 and facilitated by Chris Grant, aims to promote education, community engagement, and career opportunities that connect people with the Thoroughbred industry worldwide. At the forum, which welcomed industry participants from USA, Australia, Japan, Ireland, France, Dubai and the UK, the idea was the share, collate and deliver a global plan around three key pillars of activity-education, community engagement and workforce and careers.

Grant, the Deputy Chair of the London 2020 Olympic and Paralympic International Development Programme and past CEO of the UK-wide charity Sported, led the first two days of the forum, with ITV racing presenter Ed Chamberlin at the helm for the final day.  Before the forum ended, a pledge was signed, a steering committee set up and the organisation's website was launched within a year.

Chris Grant, who will be stepping down from his role as TfRI Steering Group Chairman, commented, “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 as the Racing Foundation CEO, 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.”

“I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to work with Rob on this initiative,” the French-based Powell added. “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.”

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