The announcement by the Racing Minister Winston Peters to appoint John Messara to review the New Zealand racing industry’s governance structures and provide recommendations on future directions for the industry has been welcomed across the board by the thoroughbred industry.
According to John Fokerd President of the New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders Association, the Minister should be congratulated for his appointment of Messara.
“It is an excellent decision to appoint someone of the calibre of John Messara to the role, and the Minister should be applauded,” Fokerd said.
“In his wisdom he has appointed someone with a proven track record to make change happen, and not some academic or firm of analysts and consultants. Mr Messara has already successfully changed the shape of racing in New South Wales and made it the envy of racing jurisdictions throughout the world.
“With a thorough knowledge of the racing and breeding industry both in Australia and in New Zealand we could not be in better hands. By the same token he is known for his business acumen and for being objective and independent in his views, and we are look forward to seeing his recommendations in the near future.”
Messara was a successful in the stockbroking business before he established Arrowfield Stud in the mid 80’s. It was home to Danehill and his superb sire sons Danzero, Flying Spur and Redoute’s Choice, who is now leaving his own dynasty of sire sons including the current champion Australian sire Snitzel. Only this month they were the leading vendor at the Inglis Easter Sales, and their stallions featured in a number of the leading lots.
Not afraid to lead from the front over the last three decades Messara has been Chairman of Aushorse Marketing, Chairman of the Thoroughbred Breeders Australia, a member of the Pattern Committee, before being appointed as Chairman of Racing New South Wales in 2011.
A position he held until 2016 and here he brought about the changes and reform that have produced enormous growth in stake money and turnover in racing in New South Wales. He was also instrumental in merging the four Sydney racing clubs into one club. During this time he was also Chairman of Racing Australia.
Messara will commence his investigation immediately and will look at all aspects of the industry across the three codes. He will have assistance from the Department of Internal Affairs if necessary and aims to have a strategic report completed by the end of the racing season.
According to Mr Peters, Messara’s review will also assist the government in determining if the current Racing Act 2003 and the proposed Racing Amendment Bill are fit for purpose. Messara was instrumental in Race Fields legislation in Australia.
“The local breeding industry has been declining for a number of years now and to be frank, there hasn’t been much light at the end of the tunnel for a number of our members, a strong and successful breeding industry needs the support of a strong racing industry,” Fokerd concluded,” and I am confident that Mr Messara’s recommendations will go a long way to ensure this in the future.”
For further insight the following links to previously run stories in the Informant are well worth revisiting - (click here) February, (click here) April and most recent (click here)