Applications are now open for a new stable staff recruitment initiative, developed by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), British Racing School (BRS) and Northern Racing College (NRC).
The Entry to Employment Programme, which is supported by The Racing Foundation, is specifically targeted at the 1000’s of equine college students in the UK and will provide a new training and entry route into the horseracing industry.
The programme, which is free of charge this year, consists of a four-week residential training course followed by a work placement at a training yard. It is designed to encourage those who already have hands-on experience with horses into a career as a racing groom or work rider and is part of a wider, ongoing initiative to address the stable staff shortage within racing.
The training course will teach participants the specifics of how to ride and look after racehorses and will take place at both the BRS and NRC, with 16 places on offer at each this summer. Upon successful completion of the four-week training programme participants will be placed into employment at a training yard.
Applicants must be in their final year of studies for an equine or animal-related qualification at an equine college or have recently graduated and have a strong interest and desire to work with racehorses.
The residential courses will run during the summer months with applications now open until 9 June. Successful applicants will be invited to attend an assessment day which will include an interview and assessment of riding ability, fitness and suitability for the course.
Carole Goldsmith, the BHA’s Director of People and Development, said: “We have been working with Equine Colleges for some time now, providing careers lectures to showcase the employment opportunities in racing.
“We have also partnered with Racing to School and their Rider Programme to ensure that all equine college students get the opportunity to visit a yard and racecourse to really experience the working environment.
“Following a small pilot last year we established a requirement to upskill equine college graduates with more specific training related to riding and caring for racehorses to get them ready for employment in a racing yard.
“We’re looking forward to the launch of the Entry to Employment Scheme and would like to thank The Racing Foundation, British Racing School and Northern Racing College.”
Trainer Donald McCain said: “This is a great initiative and I know of a number of young people who this would suit down to the ground.
“Anything that can be done to recruit more stable staff should be applauded.”
Duncan Gregory, Operations Director at the British Racing School, said: “As a centre for excellence for the horseracing industry, we are always looking to broaden the range of training we provide.
“We are excited about welcoming the first equine college students this summer and meeting the needs of this new group of learners.”
Stephen Padgett, Chief Executive of the Northern Racing College, said: “Being responsive to the needs of the racing industry is an important part of our role at the NRC.
“Delivering more trained staff who are passionate about horses to work in the sport is a priority and we are delighted to be involved in the initiative.”
Notes to editors:
1. The £1m Racing Foundation Grant was announced in August 2012 and was designed to ensure the proceeds are distributed to worthwhile causes within racing. Read the press release here.
2. The Racing Foundation was established in January 2012 by the BHA, Horsemen’s Group and Racecourse Association when it received an endowment of £78 million from the net proceeds of the UK government’s sale of the Horserace Totalisator Board (“Tote”). It was created to support charitable purposes associated with the horseracing and Thoroughbred breeding industry.
3. The British Racing School and Northern Racing College are two of the British Horseracing industry’s approved training providers. Based in Newmarket and Doncaster respectively, they provide a wide variety of training in all aspects of the racing industry including stable staff training for Racing Grooms and training for Jockeys and Trainers.