Hatton appointed: Irish Thoroughbred Marketing choose successor to O'Hagan

 

RACING:A TUMULTUOUS week for Irish racing’s marketing division continued yesterday with confirmation that Elaine Hatton will next month take over as general manager of Irish Thoroughbred Marketing.

It came on the back of Monday’s shock resignation by former ITM chief executive Michael O’Hagan, who three weeks previously had also been appointed as Horse Racing Ireland’s director of communications.

The HRI board accepted O’Hagan’s resignation, weeks after he had been sanctioned for breaching the body’s code of conduct and ethics.

Reports later suggested O’Hagan, who was heavily involved in organising Chinese delegations to buy thoroughbreds in Ireland, was also encouraging the Chinese to purchase showjumpers through his wife’s consultancy business.

The matter was bought to HRI’s attention by an anonymous letter. Racing’s ruling body said O’Hagan left to “pursue personal business interests”. He is being replaced by Hatton, a marketing executive with Glanbia.

Other appointments yesterday included Joe Osborne and Dick O’Sullivan joining ITM’s Advisory Committee. Osborne is the recently appointed chairman of the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders Association and a previous long-serving ITM committee member. O’Sullivan has previously been served as chairman and general manager of ITM and is manager of Punchestown racecourse.

“It’s business as usual at ITM and these appointments will help strengthen what is already a strong team,” the HRI chief executive Brian Kavanagh said yesterday.

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