My Career Story – Callum Helliwell

Are you looking for a career in horseracing or maybe you are considering a career in the sports industry? Kick start your career with the British Horseracing Development Programme. That’s what Callum did…..

Callum Helliwell was offered a placement on the 2018 Programme and we caught up with him recently to see what the programme meant to him and where horseracing has taken him.

“I’ve been horse mad from as far back as I can remember. Nobody in my family is particularly horsey but I’ve always loved horses and I was riding by the time I was five. I was about eight when I discovered “The Morning Line” (a weekly, Saturday morning TV programme covering news and information about racing) and I have been hooked ever since. I can’t see myself doing anything that doesn’t involve an element of the racing industry.”

“I was offered a place on the British Horseracing Development Programme in June 2018 and the initial introduction course was the best two weeks of my life. I learnt so much about the whole industry, from the governing body to the breeding industry.  Following this I spent my three months working for Great British Racing, horse racing’s official marketing and promotional body which included being part of the Student Initiative campaign. This is an amazing scheme that encourages students to be able to attend Britain’s richest race day (British Champions Day in October) at a fraction of the cost of a regular ticket.”

“After completing my placement at Great British Racing, I made the decision to increase my knowledge of the breeding and bloodstock side of the industry and was lucky enough to be accepted onto the National Stud Diploma course. This was an incredible experience which taught me so much about the many complex areas of the breeding and bloodstock industry.”

“Upon completing that course, I followed the National Stud’s resident stallion, Time Test down to Little Avondale Stud in New Zealand where I was part of the yearling preparation team headed by Sam and Buzz Williams. I’d never been involved in anything like this before but it was another experience that will live long in my memory. It was one of the most rewarding elements of the horseracing industry that I have ever been involved in and being able to do it in a country as amazing as New Zealand made it or the more worthwhile.”

“I came back to the UK in March last year right in the middle of the Coronavirus outbreak in the UK and like many people, the world seemed to come to a stop.  I was however fortunate enough to get in contact with a fellow British Horseracing Development Programme alumni, Tim Kent who is the Managing Director of Goffs UK, one of the sales houses where racehorses are bought and sold, and he could not have been more helpful. I’ve been a “Bid Spotter” for as many Goff’s sales as I possibly can, ever since and I’m loving it.”

“The main bit of advice I would give anyone considering a career in racing is to be a positive person, in a world where it’s very easy to get down, depressed and stressed – be the person that can make someone else smile.  Being part of this Programme has taught me so much and enabled me to be where I am today.”

You can apply for the 2021 British Horseracing Development Programme now, click here. Applications close on 28th February 2021.