Contrary to reports which have circulated, the CEO of the New Zealand Metropolitan Trotting Club - Shane Gloury - is not leaving Addington Raceway for greener pastures at Harness Racing Victoria.
In an exclusive interview with Harnesslink, Gloury said he had been caught between a rock and a hard place and due to family circumstances, the Australian born racing adminstrator was left with little option but to return to Melbourne.
“It’s been a tough time personally for me in recent months, particularly when I wanted to remain in New Zealand” said Gloury.
Gloury was employed as a Senior Executive at Harness Racing Victoria in the role of General Manager, Strategic Planning and Development before taking on Addington Raceway’s CEO’s job in January 2009. He will stay on at New Zealand’s premier track until the week after the New Zealand Cup on Tuesday November 8.
“The reason that I am returning to Melbourne is because my partner of 15 years struggled to settle in Christchurch and became homesick being away from family and friends. She found it difficult to find suitable full time employment and found the earthquakes and colder climate not to her liking. Her mother (based in Melbourne) has also recently been diagnosed with a serious illness and this didn’t help the situation," Gloury told Harnesslink.
“Anyway about a month ago, my partner returned to Melbourne and despite my requests for her to give Christchurch another chance, she is not coming back to New Zealand," Gloury explained after some New Zealand media had misled their readers into thinking Goury was leaving Christchurch for better opportunities..
He said he was faced with the choice of having to give up a job that he was passionate about or losing a valued and loving long term relationship.
"This was not a great choice to be faced with. Ultimately blood is thicker than water and I decided to choose family over employment. As a result, I advised the Directors of the NZMTC that I would not be in a position to continue on with Addington Raceway after Cup Week this year and would be stepping down from the role after we had steered the ship through this very important week for the Club.
“It’s tough for me to come to terms with the fact that I will not be part of the future here because there has been plenty of blood, sweat and tears that we have poured into the place over the past two and a half years and there has been plenty of big hurdles that we have had to overcome in that time.
“We have had to make a number of changes in order to remain viable and to lift our performance in critical areas where it was required. However, we have now weathered the storm and have put together a fresh, energetic and capable team that is taking Addington Raceway and Events Centre forward and is delivering some excellent results for the NZMTC.”
“In the past twelve months our team has turned the financial results for the Club around full circle and for the season just ended we will record a very healthy trading profit result and one that has seen the Clubs cash balances increase by around $1 million. This turnaround has enabled stake increases to be introduced at Addington racemeetings and these have been very well received by Industry participants in Canterbury,” Gloury said.
He believed there were some great opportunities that were immediately in front of Addington and the team. "What we now have in place is well placed to capitalise on these opportunities.” “So to walk away now from Addington given the challenges of recent years, the results that are now being delivered and the opportunities that have appeared on the horizon is not easy. In an ideal world, with a settled family life I would have loved to have remained in Christchurch as CEO of Addington Raceway and to be part of the exciting future that lies ahead for a revitalised Addington.”
“Unfortunately due to personal circumstances, I won’t be able to be part of that future, however hopefully I have played a part in taking Addington Raceway forward.”
“When I was aware that my partner wasn’t coming back to New Zealand and that I had made up my mind to follow her back to Melbourne after Cup Week, I contacted John Anderson at Harness Racing Victoria to advise him of my situation and that I would be seeking employment opportunities in Melbourne after NZ Cup Week.”
“John sounded quite enthusiastic about my pending return to Melbourne and advised that there may be an opportunity to rejoin the Finance Team at HRV, where I originally started my career. The situation moved quite quickly and I was offered the Chief Financial Officer’s position at HRV to head up the Finance and Administration team which I duly accepted.”
“So while I am disappointed to be leaving Addington and really wanted to stay here, I am fortunate that I will be able to continue my career in Harness Racing and I look forward to the challenges that lie in store at Harness Racing Victoria. I am grateful that HRV has provided me with an opportunity and hopefully with my skills and experience, I can make a positive contribution to HRV and the Industry in Victoria.”
“Life is what you make of it and while I am disappointed that I cannot continue in New Zealand after Cup Week, I look forward to the next few months here and then to the next chapter at Harness Racing Victoria,” Gloury said.
By Duane RANGER (editor)
(1) Shane Gloury winning his ‘Fight For Youth against Brett Anderson of the Christchurch Casino:
(2) Shane Gloury speaking about the fight: