Continued collaboration fuels record number of equine college events to kick off 2020

Since the 2016 launch of our Riders’ Programme, collaborating with equine colleges has been an important part of our work. The Programme aims to encourage young people who already ride or have an interest in equestrianism to consider racing as a possible training and career route.

Over the past couple of years, we have looked to partner more closely with the BHA’s Careers in Racing team, who spearhead the industry’s recruitment, training and retention activities, and are already engaged with many colleges.

We are pleased to report that this continued partnership has resulted in a record 27 equine college events planned and in the diary between January and March this year – engaging approximately 700 young people.

The first event of the year took place earlier this week at Plumpton College, where our team was joined by Michelle Douglas, Careers Marketing & Recruitment Advisor at Careers in Racing. The day started with an in-depth presentation from Michelle, which not only outlined the varied and interesting jobs that are available in the industry, but also all the benefits available to racing staff and how to apply. Racing to School’s Rob Bellamy put students through their paces on the Equicizer, also giving them an insight into the day-to-day work as a Racing Groom, and a chance to have plenty of fun!

To complement these college visits, we also run raceday events where students get the chance to have a behind the scenes look at a racecourse and experience a sport that despite their general equestrian interest, many have had very little exposure to in the past.

After each event, students are given the details of the Equine Student Progression Programme, a five-week course at the British Racing School that is followed by a guaranteed job at a Trainer’s yard on completion. At this week’s event at Plumpton, 10 students indicated their interest and signed up to the Careers in Racing mailing list.

“These events form a vital part of the industry’s people strategy, introducing young people to a sport filled with career prospects in an area they have already shown an interest in.” said Michelle Douglas.

“Racing to School does a great job and it is fantastic that through this collaboration we are able to reach 700 potential future employees in just three months! It gives us a great chance of hopefully getting graduates through to our Equine Student Progression Programme.”

We are extremely grateful to Careers in Racing for their continued support for this initiative and to The Racing Foundation who generously part-fund our Riders’ Programme, for which we look forward to delivering record participation in 2020.