Thursday March 31, 2022
EXPERIENCED racing administrator James Heddo will join Hawkesbury Race Club next week as its new Chief Executive Officer.
James Heddo has worked in the racing industry for more than 30 years, including four years as Executive General Manager Racing Services at the Australian Turf Club up until July 2020, where he was responsible for leading and managing the club’s business, racing and training activities across their four metropolitan venues.
During his time with the ATC, he was appointed as acting Chief Executive Officer for almost 12 months, overseeing the club’s major racing carnivals, 280 full-time staff and their $270 million annual turnover.
“I’m delighted to be able to return to the racing industry and grateful for the opportunity to join such a strong and historic club as Hawkesbury,” Mr Heddo said today.
“I look forward to working with the great team there, and the first focus will be ensuring the forthcoming annual Saturday stand-alone Hawkesbury Cup Day meeting on April 30 is another fantastic success."
“I am also looking forward to working with RacingNSW and investigating any opportunity to further increase the club’s training footprint.”
“Hawkesbury boasts some outstanding trainers, and the performances already this season of horses such as Duais (Group 1 Tancred Stakes and Australian Cup) and Icebath (inaugural The Invitation) highlight this.”
Prior to joining the ATC, James Heddo had spent eight years as chief executive of Gosford Race Club between 2008-2016, where he oversaw the $4.8m facilities upgrade, and the rebranding to The Entertainment Grounds, with a renewed focus on maximising revenues from both raceday and non raceday events, including establishing their own successful in-house catering operation.
James Heddo began his career in racing administration in 1988, working at the Sydney Turf Club for 12 years, before moving on to spend five years as CEO of Townsville Turf Club and three years in a similar role with Bendigo Jockey Club.
He has served as chairman of the NSW Racing Industry Consultant Group (RICG) and is a past chairman of the NSW Provincial Racing Association.
Hawkesbury Race Club administrator David Jewell welcomed James Heddo’s appointment, and said he was looking forward to working with him until a new Hawkesbury Board is in place later this year.
“James is a highly regarded and respected CEO who joins the club at a critical time. With the support of a committed and hard-working team there, I am confident that Hawkesbury Race Club is in very good hands.”
James Heddo will start his new position on Monday, with Hawkesbury’s biggest race meeting only a month away.