Racing pundit John McCririck’s “bigoted and male chauvinist views” mean Channel 4 was right in sacking him, an Employment Tribunal has ruled.
The 73 year old racing expert claimed that he had been sacked from the station’s coverage because of his age, claiming “anonymous suits and skirts” wanted to hire younger faces.
However, the Central London Employment Appeal Tribunal ruled: “All the evidence is that Mr McCririck’s pantomime persona as demonstrated on the celebrity television appearances, and his self described bigoted and male chauvinist views were clearly unpalatable to a wide potential audience.”
According to the ruling: “Mr McCririck was dismissed because of his persona emanating from his appearances from Celebrity television shows and the associated press articles resulting from them together with his appearances as a broadcaster on Channel 4 Racing where, as he accepted, 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.”
The pundit, famed for his deerstalker, tic-tac gestures and gold jewellery, took his former employer and TV production company IMG Media Limited to the tribunal, alleging his sacking last year was motivated by age discrimination.
Both firms denied discrimination in the £3 million case.
McCririck said: "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.
"With my legal team we are now out of contact while studying the judgment in detail.”