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John McCririck accuses Channel 4 of ‘ageism’ after he is sacked and replaced by younger team


By The Drum Team | Editorial

October 28, 2012 | 2 min read

Racing pundit John McCririck has hit out at Channel 4 bosses after he was dropped and replaced by a younger team including Clare Balding.

The 72-year-old said this week that he was “devastated at being sacked” after Channel 4 announced its new team and that he was only informed he was being axed 30 minutes before the new line-up was revealed.

He continued: “It is so sad that Channel 4 boss Jay Hunt and production chief Carl Hicks, both long-time BBC executives, have again gone down their well-worn path of ageism.

“Among the 13 slated to be on screen, only Jimbo McGrath is over 50.”

"Without any consultation or being asked to change my presentation style, I was only told by Channel 4's Head Of Sport Jamie Aitchison half an hour before their press release," he added.

"I trust those now in power, having shown their macho images as all new producers do by getting rid of their most well-known older performer, don't forget that racing appeals to all generations.

“According to Channel 4, I'm being sacked after audience research.”

A Channel 4 spokeswoman said: “The presenting team for Channel 4 racing from 2013 includes a range of experienced broadcasters and racing experts and reflects our desire to give a new approach to covering horseracing as we become the terrestrial home of the sport.”


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