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Exclusive: David Williams delighted at Cheltenham Festival return after “two of the longest years”

The Cheltenham Festival is one of the most prestigious events on the horseracing calendar, and its full return this year, after two pandemic-hit years, has been enjoyed by thousands of attendees. 

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One of those is David Williams, Director of Public Affairs at The Rank Group, which owns and operates the Grosvenor Casinos and Mecca Bingo brands. 

Williams, who has worked with a number of gambling organisations, including Ladbrokes and Britbet, is responsible for The Rank Group’s politically facing activities, including the management of regulatory frameworks and parliamentary engagement strategies. He is also responsible for crafting effective working relationships with external stakeholders. 

On attending this year’s festival, he exclusively told Gambling Insider: “It’s been the longest two years that any of us can remember, but returning to Cheltenham, for many of us, feels like coming home. There is nothing more life-affirming than a day in the sunshine with 70,000 other people determined to have nothing but a rattling good time.” 

This year’s Cheltenham Festival has featured a number of significant moments across the 28-race, four-day event. 

Tiger Roll, a legendary horse which won two Grand Nationals and a total of five races at Cheltenham, brought his career to a close on 16 March, following a narrow defeat in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase. 

To mark the occasion, Paddy Power sent a giant retirement card for punters to sign and write well-wishes. 

On 18 March, Rachael Blackmore became the first female jockey to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup, one of the most prestigious races on the calendar.

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