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25 February 2013 | Industry

Racecourses Gather For Olympic Learnings

An enthusiastic group of Racecourse Operations Managers gathered in London on Thursday 21 and Friday 22 February for the inaugural RCA Operations Seminar, supported by Cleanevent
 
The event, which took place in the heartland of the London Olympic and Paralympic Games, Stratford, kicked off with a suitably Olympic theme. 
 
Racecourses heard from speakers who were involved in the planning and delivery of the 2012 Games’ including Eilieen Williams of ESTC Group, responsible for training the ‘last mile’ Olympic Staff, which included the iconic ‘Games Maker’ volunteers, Miriam Flynn (Deputy Health, Safety and Licensing Manager for the Olympic Park) and David Demolder (London Legacy Development Corporation and Head of Health, Safety and Licensing for the Olympic Venues).  The speakers shared their experiences from their work in the run up to, and execution of, the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
 
The second day covered a number of other relevant issues including the new safety certification process, and management of the public on racecourses on non-racedays.  There was also time built into the programme for racecourses to raise issues for discussion amongst the delegates and generally discuss the topics that have been touched on from both a racing and non-racing perspective. 
 
RCA Racecourse Services Director, Caroline Davies commented ‘We are delighted that the racecourses found the programme informative with lots of great ideas and learnings for them to take away.  The experience of our guest speakers in organising possibly the biggest and most successful sporting events this country has ever seen is invaluable.  We are very grateful to them all and to Cleanevent for their generous support’.
 
James Crespi, Operations Manager at Goodwood Racecourse commented, 'This was a hugely useful experience for me and my team.  There are definitely relevant ideas and lessons that we can take from the massive operation to get the London Games off the ground last Summer.  Equally, getting to share experiences with other racecourses was a very valuable experience. Many thanks to the RCA for putting the Seminar together.
 
Ruth Shaw, Chief Executive of the Sports Ground Safety Authority (SGSA), who addressed the Seminar on the second day, said, "It was a pleasure to be involved in the inaugural RCA Operations Seminar. As well as providing a platform to share SGSA advice on risk based safety certification, it gave me the opportunity to hear from practitioners about their experiences at racecourses across the country”

The presentations made at the Seminar are available for Racecourses to view in the Member's Area of the RCA website.