A group of 14 students from Barr’s Hill School and Community College in Coventry attended the final Jump meeting of the season at Warwick Racecourse on Wednesday 21st March 2012, as a result of the partnership between youth charity The Prince’s Trust and the British Horseracing Authority (BHA). They were given exclusive access to the racecourse in order to learn more about the opportunities that exist for them when they leave school, and to develop their understanding of the British Racing industry.
This unique opportunity to gain an insight into how a day at the races works commenced with an introduction to the racing industry from Commercial Manager Lee Moulson. Highlights of the day included watching the jockeys weigh out prior to racing with the Clerk of the Scales, watching a race get under way beneath the watchful eye of the Starter himself, a tour of the track with Clerk of the Course Sulekha Varma, and a birds-eye view of the racing action from the Judge’s Box with Gold Cup and Grand National Judge, Nick Bostock.
With more than one million young people not in employment, education or training in the UK, The Prince’s Trust helps disadvantaged young people to overcome the barriers to achieving this and to gain the confidence, skills and motivation needed to find future employment and training opportunities.
The partnership between the BHA and The Prince’s Trust launched in November 2008, providing the Racing Experience Days to The Prince’s Trust xl programme. xl Clubs are run in schools nationwide for pupils in Years 10 and 11 who are at risk of truanting and underachievement. So far this season, the BHA have organized Racing Experience Days for deserving students at Ayr, Newcastle, Fakenham and Leicester racecourses, and have more planned for the year ahead including a visit to Sandown in July.
Robin Mounsey, Communications Manager for the British Horseracing Authority said:
“Racing as an industry has a lot to offer young people – not only as a form of entertainment, but as a rewarding career path. We are proud of our involvement in demonstrating to those taking part in the xl programme the fun and fulfilling opportunities that await when leaving school, and hopefully give the young people a great day out in the process. We are very grateful to both the racecourses and the industry employees who have been instrumental in making this worthy initiative a success”.
Tom Keer, Head of Sport at The Prince’s Trust added:
“We are hugely grateful to the BHA for its support through the delivery of the Racing Experience Days. I am pleased to say that since our partnership began we have helped over 100 young people through the sport. And I am delighted to see the partnership go from strength to strength as we look to develop new ways to work together.”
Lee Moulson, Commercial Manager at Warwick Racecourse said:
“It was great to give some of the children on The Prince’s Trust scheme the opportunity to spend a day at Warwick Racecourse. For some of them it was their first experience of horseracing and we were delighted they had such an insightful and enjoyable day here with us.”