The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has announced that applications for the 2014 British Horseracing Authority Graduate Development Programme are now open. The opening coincided with Dubai Future Champions Day at Newmarket’s Rowley Mile, where the BHA’s Careers in Racing initiative held a trade stand at the ‘Racing for Jobs’ recruitment fair. Graduates can apply for the Programme through careersinracing.com.
The Graduate Programme has provided valuable training and development to newcomers to the Racing Industry for over 20 years. Around 350 graduates have completed the 10-week Programme and many have gone on to successful and high profile careers within British Racing.
Ross Hamilton, a graduate in 2011 and currently External Affairs Officer at the BHA said:
“The programme is a great way to get involved in the industry and has such a pedigree within Racing with its previous alumni that it gives you an excellent platform as a graduate to succeed.
“This programme suits people from all walks of life – whether you can ride a horse or not, or haven’t placed a bet in your life – to get involved in British Racing. As a passionate fan of sports generally, the programme offered me the chance to pursue my dream graduate career. I could not recommend it more highly.”
Following the programme, graduates are well-positioned to begin a career within the Racing industry. Many continue to work in Racing, with previous graduates having gone on to fill senior positions within a broad range of Racing Organisations. Several graduates from the 2013 scheme have secured longer term positions with their graduate sponsors including: James Yellen at Great British Racing; Amy Derham at Great British Racing International; Joe Rendall at Timeform and Harry Williams at the Racehorse Owners Association (ROA). Three of the graduates have gone onto extended placements in the bloodstock industry as part of the Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association Next Generation Committee.
Harry Williams, a Graduate on the 2013 programme, who has secured a full-time job with the ROA said:
“The British Horseracing Graduate Programme provides an invaluable opportunity for anyone looking to pursue a career in the racing industry. Irrespective of your background, it offers graduates a unique insight into the sport and maintains its importance as a source of new talent.
“Not only did the programme introduce me to some of the most influential people in the world of Racing, but has helped me build a network with the other graduates.”
Mark Scully gave up a position as a Junior Reporter with the Sunderland Echo to take part in the 2013 Programme with a placement at the Racing Post. He said:
“I took a risk leaving my job to take part in the programme, but my time at the Racing Post was invaluable to my career as a Racing Journalist, and since leaving my placement I have secured a job at Australia and New Zealand Bloodstock News based in Newmarket and I am now more than pleased that I followed my dream to work in horseracing.”
With over 300 applications for an average of 18 placements there is a rigorous assessment process to select the candidates. The Programme begins with a two-week residential course in Newmarket during July, where graduates take part in field trips and attend seminars held by key figures in Racing. The course explains how various aspects of the sport work together and gives an insight in to how the different organisations function within the industry. It aids the graduates’ professional development, but also provides the opportunity to build valuable professional relationships with people from across the sport to develop their own careers.
Graduates then begin an eight-week paid placement with one of the wide-ranging sponsors within the industry. In 2013, placement opportunities included roles at the BHA, Horseracing Betting Levy Board, Racing Enterprises Ltd, Tattersalls, the Racecourse Association, the Racing Post, Timeform, Coral and Weatherbys, as well as several Jockey Club Racecourses.