AFTER 17 years at the helm of Stratford Racecourse, MD and Clerk of the Course Stephen Lambert will be handing over the reins to Ilona Barnett, who started as Stephen’s assistant, and has for the last two years been Operations Manager.
Ilona will become General Manager on January 1, 2015.
Stephen, 65, said: “It will be sad to stand down from my duties at Stratford but I want to finish my working life in the voluntary sector and I need to get on with this before I am even older!
“My co-directors and I have enormous faith in Ilona. She has been an invaluable assistant and colleague to me for many years. In addition, she has experience of racing outside the confines of Stratford.
“Ilona represents the small Independent Racecourses (IRL) on two RCA committees – The Safety Group and The Raceday Experience Group – and her knowledge of point to pointing has also been a major asset with our close connection with the Hunter Chase world. Stratford will thrive under her leadership and we are very excited by the appointment.”
Ilona commented: “I am delighted to have this opportunity and I am very excited about my new responsibilities.”
Stephen’s daughter Nessie Lambert, who trained under Charlie Moore at Uttoxeter and worked under Simon Claisse at the Cheltenham Festival for several years as well as assisting at Stratford on racedays, will become Clerk of the Course, subject to accreditation.