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Paul Gillard will return from north Queensland to take over as senior steward on the Gold Coast.

The previous long-term Gold Coast head steward Ian Brown resigned last year to take up a position as racing manager with the Gold Coast Turf Club.

The Gold Coast senior steward is a key role in Queensland racing as the track hosts more than 50 meetings a year and has 700 horses in work making it the second biggest racing centre in the state.

Gillard has more than 25 years experience in wide ranging parts of Queensland and is currently senior steward in north Queensland.

Queensland Racing Integrity Commission boss Ross Barnett said the permanent appointment of such a competent and respected steward reflected the importance of the Gold Coast as a major racing community in the state.

“With the planned upgrade and expansion of the Gold Coast facility, the volume and quality of racing will continue to expand, and it’s important the commission provides a high standard of integrity and consistent application of the rules,” Barnett said.

Gillard has had stints throughout the state overseeing racing in Brisbane, Rockhampton and Townsville and surrounding areas.

QRIC has also announced the appointment of Dr Shawn Stanley to head the commission’s analytical services Racing Science section.

Barnett said with more than 30 years experience in racing chemistry around the world, most recently as chief analyst with the Singapore Turf Club laboratory, Dr Stanley had a long standing interest in improving both the efficiency and sensitivity of anti-doping analysis of equine, canine and human samples.

Barnett said Stanley’s critical role was essential in maintaining the confidence of the racing industry.

“In the last financial year 19,985 racing animal samples were tested for prohibited substances and this work is of paramount importance,” he said.

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