Pilossof takes up the challenge of executive officer’s role at Racing Orange

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NEW FACE: Racing Orange executive officer Gavin Pilossof says he’s hoping to help build the sport at Towac Park. Photo: NICK McGRATH 0910nmrace2RACING
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FROM Zimbabwe to Orange – it’s the long way around, but new Racing Orange executive officer Gavin Pilossofsays he’s thrilled about his latest challenge at Towac Park.

After a tough 2014-15 season, Pilossof has been handling the resurgence of the city’s thoroughbreds for the last month and, already, the home of racing in Orange is looking vastly different as the Towac Park track receives a well overdue upgrade and work on tidying the grandstand facilities continues.

Pilossof has been in Australia for 18 months, and he and his family moved to Orange to be closer to his sister.

With an enviable background in the horse racing business – he’s been involved with thoroughbreds since the age of seven, has helped his father own, train and breed horses and was the head handicapper in Zimbabwe, as well as the audit manager of the turf club – immersing himself in Racing Orange seemed a logical career choice.

“We’re loving it being in Australia so far,” Pilossof said.

“I think it’s a beautiful place.”

He said reinvigorating the Racing Orange scene was goal number one for the new management.

“We want to get the function side of things going; more corporate events out here,” Pilossof said. “Once all of this is done that’s what we’ll target … more race meetings and getting more trainers working from here.

“With Orange being fairly central in the Central West, we see there being a big opportunity here for trainers.”

Currently at the Towac Park stables Michael Plummer, Brad Draper, Alison Smith, Becky Byrne, Lee Van Den Bos, Don Oakley, Debra Sharpe, Brian Buckley, Peter Cornish and John Langworthy work at the Orange facility.

Roughly, that translates to about 40 horses in work.

“We’ve got enough capacity here for close to 150 horses,” Pilossof said.

“That’s a target we want to reach.”

Racing Orange’s first TAB meeting of the spring season is on Friday, October 2.

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