Changes ahead for HRNZ Board

The clubs and kindred bodies of Harness Racing New Zealand have today voted by an overwhelming majority to make a significant change to the make-up and structure of the board of Harness Racing New Zealand.

The current board has been determined for some time, with the support and encouragement of the clubs, to move to a more streamlined board model that is better equipped to deal with the challenges that the industry faces in an increasingly competitive racing and sports environment. 

Chairman Ken Spicer says, “our collective focus has been to move towards a model that sees the best possible people providing governance to our sport, moving away from the current model that sees representation on a regional and kindred body basis”.

The new board of eight (down from 11 currently) will include two independent directors to be appointed by a selection committee. Four directors will be elected by the clubs/kindred bodies, with the two major clubs, Auckland Trotting Club and the New Zealand Metropolitan Trotting Club, appointing one director each. 

“This is an opportunity to bring new and complementary skillsets to our board. We are committed to improving the diversity of our board and it is pleasing that the industry has embraced the governance changes recommended by the Messara report” says Spicer.      

The current directors will step down at September’s AGM.  The new board will meet for the first time in October. The process of appointing the independent directors will begin once the elected directors are chosen by the clubs/kindred bodies and any skill gaps can be identified.    

Spicer says, “this is a momentous day for the sport of Harness Racing in New Zealand and I congratulate all involved having the vision to support this change and for putting the interests of the sport first”.

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