Former England head coach Stuart Lancaster will leave Leinster to become director of rugby at French club Racing 92 at the end of this season.
Lancaster has been Leinster’s senior coach since 2016, working under head coach Leo Cullen, while he spent four years as England boss before stepping down after the 2015 World Cup.
The 52-year-old heads to Paris on a four-year contract which will begin on July 1 next year, with current Racing boss Laurent Travers taking on a new role as chairman of the club’s management board.
🗣️ | Hear from Stuart Lancaster who sat down to discuss his time with Leinster Rugby, after announcing that he will be joining Racing 92 at the end of the season. #FromTheGroundUp pic.twitter.com/84KL6HNKxd
— Leinster Rugby (@leinsterrugby) September 26, 2022
“It is with great joy and pride that I am taking on the role of director of rugby for Racing 92,” Lancaster told the Racing website. “I thank Laurent Travers and the whole club for the trust they have chosen to place in me.
“I know the responsibilities that will be mine at the head of this extraordinary squad, certainly one of the most competitive in Europe. I look forward to working with all these talented players to support me in my mission.”
During his time with Leinster, the Irish province won the Heineken Champions Cup in 2018 and four PRO14 titles.
“Initially it was for just one season, and here I am entering my seventh,” he told the province’s website.
“And that is a reflection on all the players past and present I have worked with and the people of Leinster and Ireland who have made me and my family feel so welcome.
“I have always wanted to challenge myself as a coach in different ways, and the opportunity to coach in France at a club like Racing 92 is an exciting one. I will look forward to that challenge when it comes.”
Leinster head coach Leo Cullen added: “Stuart has been a brilliant asset to Leinster Rugby since he joined us in 2016.
“He has helped us to grow at all levels, both through his work with the senior team and his willingness to get involved with under-age teams as well as clubs around the province, where he is always so generous with his time.
“I think there has always been a realisation that Stuart would move on to a new challenge at some stage. For that reason, we feel fortunate to have had him here for as long as we have.”