John McCririck loses age discrimination case against Channel 4
Racing pundit John McCririck was dumped by Channel 4 because he was "alienating" and "offensive", an employment tribunal heard.
On the first day of his employment tribunal, racing pundit John McCririck insisted he was a victim of age discrimination and is not sexist.
The wife of John McCririck has told ITV News that he has taken an employment tribunal's decision that he wasn't sacked because of his age "quite badly" and he is "quite upset."
Jenny McCririck said the racing pundit thought he would win the case against Channel 4 and "couldn't believe" he had lost.
She said it was unlikely they would appeal the tribunal's decision which she described as "disappointing".
And she rejected claims in the judgement that it was her husband's pantomime persona that was 'unpalatable' to programme makers not his age.
In a statement Channel 4 welcomed the ruling and said it was disappointed the claim had been brought to court.
Channel 4 today welcomed an Employment Tribunal's decision to throw out a claim of age discrimination brought by former Racing presenter John McCririck.
– Channel 4
We welcome the unanimous verdict of the tribunal that John McCririck’s claim fails and that Channel 4 did not discriminate on the basis of age.
We are grateful to John for his contribution towards Channel 4’s racing coverage over many years but disappointed that he decided to bring this claim.
The employment tribunal which today dismissed John McCririck's claim of age discrimination against Channel 4 has published its judgment in full.
It says the racing pundit's persona and opinions were out of keeping with the new programme:
– Tribunals Judiciary
Mr McCririck was dismissed because of his persona...his style of dress, attitudes, opinions and tic tac gestures were not in keeping with the new aims and his opinions seen as arrogant and confrontational.
In its judgement, the Employment Tribunal blamed Mr McCririck's on-screen persona for his demise.
All the evidence is that Mr McCririck's pantomime persona, as demonstrated on the celebrity television appearances, and his persona when appearing on Channel 4 Racing, together with his self-described bigoted and male chauvinist views were clearly unpalatable to a wider potential audience.
The tribunal is satisfied that the respondent had the legitimate aim of attracting a wider audience to horseracing.
Racing pundit John McCririck has given his reaction to losing his age discrimination case against Channel 4 today.
This is an historic setback for all employees in their 30s to their 70s.
After such a landmark judicial verdict, my failed legal action ensures that anonymous suits and skirts, who control the media, numerous other businesses and the public sector, will now enjoy complete freedom to replace older employees whatever their unimpaired ability and merit.
I have let them all down along with my wife, the Booby, my legal team, friends, colleagues and countless members of the public who supported me throughout. My grateful thanks and apologies to every one of them.
Former Labour home secretary David Blunkett MP said in August: 'The way TV executives worship the cult of youth seems to be an unstoppable fetish'.
It is now.
Racing pundit John McCririck has lost his age discrimination employment tribunal case against Channel 4, he said today.
Flamboyant racing pundit John McCririck was dumped from a high-profile role on Channel 4 because he was "alienating" and "very offensive", an employment tribunal has been told.
Jay Hunt, Channel 4's chief creative officer, said a talent tracker study on how he went down with audiences was "one of the worst pieces of research I have ever seen regarding a presenter".
McCririck, 73, who was dropped from Channel 4's revamped on-screen line-up, is accusing his former employers of age discrimination.
Ms Hunt said the audience research on him was "one of the most dispiriting" documents she had seen.
John McCririck has described the ongoing employment tribunal over his dismissal as Channel 4's horse racing pundit as a "daunting ordeal" and admitted he faced a "tough battle" to win the case.