HUNTINGDON has a new clerk of the course: Sulekha Varma, who will join the team at the Brampton racecourse later this month while taking on the same role at Warwick.

The two racecourses are part of Jockey Club Racecourses, the largest racecourse group in Britain - and the 26-year-old is transferring from Market Rasen and Nottingham, further courses in the same group.

Cardiff-born Varma spent her early years in Scotland and caught the horse racing bug while working for a spell as stable secretary at Lucinda Russell's training yard in Kinross.

Then she joined the British Horseracing Authority graduate scheme, spending time at the Racing Post newspaper before being appointed to the staff of the body that runs Arab Racing in Britain where she was racing secretary, racing manager and, for the first time, clerk of a course. Two years ago, Varma took on the role of clerk at Market Rasen and Nottingham.

Varma said: "I have very much enjoyed my time at Nottingham and Market Rasen. When the opportunity arose to develop and broaden my career further at two racecourses that are new to me, I jumped at the chance. I can't wait to get started."

Varma succeeds the current clerk Andrew Morris, who is moving on to Chester and Bangor-on-Dee - Sophie Hodgkinson, Huntingdon Racecourse's managing director, said: "We are sorry to lose Andrew but I am delighted that we have secured the services of Sulekha who has been doing sterling work at our sister Jockey Club racecourses."

The clerk of a course is responsible for race planning and all matters relating to turf management and preparation for racing days.