John Harnden, the man who headed up this year’s Cricket World Cup and the 2006 Commonwealth Games, has been named as the new chairman of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation.
Mr Harnden has been the long-term deputy to Ron Walker, who stepped down from the role in April.
He was also the chief executive of cricket’s 2015 World Cup, which was staged in Australia, and Melbourne’s 2006 Commonwealth Games.
The Australian Grand Prix Corporation said Mr Harnden “has built a reputation as a global leader in sport and major events”.
Mr Harnden said the appointment was “a great honour”.
“I would like to thank Premier [Daniel] Andrews and the Victorian Government for their confidence in me and look forward to working with everyone to ensure these great events continue to not only showcase and benefit the state of Victoria, but also provide unforgettable experiences for the fans,” he said in a statement.
“I am excited by the opportunity to be able to build upon the success that Ron and the team have achieved.
“I passionately believe that Melbourne is the sporting capital of the world and want to ensure that Melbourne remains in pole position.”
Mr Walker said the Government had made a “wise choice” in appointing Mr Harnden to the position.
“He understands the business. He understands marketing, which is terribly important to the Grand Prix,” Mr Walker said.
“He understands what the teams are made of and he understands how to run it, so you couldn’t get a better person.
“There are very few people in the world who could do this sort of job. He’s had such a broad sports experience.
“He’s an excellent sports administrator and I think we’re lucky to have him.”