Amy Starkey appointed new MD of Newmarket Racecourses

12th March 2012

Amy Starkey joins Newmarket Racecourses from Kempton Park

Amy Starkey joins Newmarket Racecourses from Kempton Park

Newmarket Racecourses today announced the appointment of Amy Starkey as its new Managing Director. She currently holds the same position at Kempton Park Racecourse in Sunbury-on-Thames.

In her current role within Jockey Club Racecourses, British racing's largest racecourse group, Starkey has delivered financial performances for Kempton Park well above targets, negotiated high profile and lucrative sponsorship deals and attracted a wider audience of racegoers through innovative promotional activities.

Today she oversees the running of 95 fixtures annually, including the William Hill King George VI Chase, won in 2011 for a record fifth time by Kauto Star. She is also responsible for a conference and events business at the Middlesex venue that generates more than £1.5m in turnover each year.

Starkey will begin her new role at 'HQ' in a few weeks’ time at a date to be agreed. She succeeds Stephen Wallis who recently took up a new senior role within Jockey Club Racecourses of Group Director of International and Racing Relations. Gary Tate has been Acting Managing Director of Newmarket Racecourses in the interim and will return to his role as Finance Director at the course once Starkey arrives.

Amy Starkey, 30, said:

“I’m hugely honoured to be chosen as the next Managing Director of Newmarket Racecourses. Newmarket is famous the world over as the home of Flat racing in Britain. I aim to use the experience I’ve built up as Managing Director at two of the other racecourses in the Jockey Club Racecourses family to make a success of my new position.

“While being thrilled to have been given this exceptional opportunity, I will be very sad to leave behind a really great team at Kempton Park. Without their inspired and committed efforts we could not have made the progress and achieved the successes that we have done.

“I’m now looking forward to working with the team created by Stephen Wallis, who I have long admired for the fantastic way that he has led both Epsom Downs and Newmarket Racecourses over many years.”

Julian Richmond-Watson, Chairman of Newmarket Racecourses, said:

"I am delighted that Amy Starkey is joining us as Managing Director at Newmarket. Her track record, dynamism and creativity will be of enormous benefit to Newmarket Racecourses as we continue to improve and invest in the racecourses and prize money."

Paul Fisher, Group Managing Director of Jockey Club Racecourses, said: 

"Amy has done an outstanding job at Kempton Park. She's developed an excellent team there and really moved the course forward. She's placed a strong focus on the customer and adding to their raceday experience, so there's a lot she'll be bringing to Newmarket.

"We had such strong internal candidates for this role, we didn't need to look outside Jockey Club Racecourses to make this appointment. That's testament to the talent developed in our Group."

Mike Street, Chairman of Kempton Park Racecourse, said:

"I am simply delighted for Amy who has done an outstanding job at Kempton Park; the results of which speak for themselves! We have a really first class team and Board at Kempton Park and I know that I speak on behalf of them all when I wish her all the very best on her move to Newmarket.

“Amy is the latest in a string of competent and talented young people who have moved through Kempton to other significant roles within Jockey Club Racecourses and it is great to see her hard work so richly rewarded."

Newmarket's racing season starts at The Craven meeting on Wednesday 18 April, before hosting two of British racing's Classics, the QIPCO 2000 Guineas and the QIPCO 1000 Guineas, to launch the 2012 QIPCO British Champions Series.

Amy Starkey will attend Newmarket Racecourses’ pre-season media event on 4 April and gallops morning on 5 April, where she will be available for interview about her new role.

Jockey Club Racecourses will now start a recruitment process for Amy Starkey’s successor at Kempton Park Racecourse.

About Amy Starkey
Amy Starkey came into racecourse management a little under ten years ago when she joined Northern Racing at the age of 21, going on to become Commercial Manager of both Sedgefield and Newcastle Racecourses. She joined The Jockey Club’s racecourse arm in 2005 when she was appointed Managing Director of Huntingdon Racecourse, a post she held until 2008 when she was promoted to Managing Director of Kempton Park Racecourse.