Racing Staff Week: Saturday 24th June – Saturday 1st July 2023
Racing Staff Week – the industry’s annual celebration of people who work in British horseracing – returns this Saturday (24th June) for a seventh year.
Racing Welfare, horseracing’s human welfare charity, organises the annual celebration which brings together the racing industry and its followers to celebrate the dedicated and passionate racing staff, without whom the sport would cease to exist. Betfair generously supports Racing Staff Week which this year will see five charity races, specifically for stable staff, taking place across the country as well as a host of community events and a competition with a total prize of £500 in vouchers.
The stable staff races provide racing’s valued community with the chance to fulfil what may be a lifelong dream for some, whilst also raising essential funds for Racing Welfare. More than 50 riders are taking part.
The first stable staff race takes place at Ayr racecourse on Saturday 24th June. Local trainer Mike Smith is supporting the race with two runners being ridden by staff members Natasha McKee and Alexandra McQueen. He said: “They’re both looking forward to it. Riding in the races, they learn so much, they get to understand how quick they’ve got to go and learn what it takes to get a horse to gallop in a race. It’s a great experience for them and it’s something I’m pleased to support.”
When asked why she wanted to take part in the race, Alexandra said: “I want to understand more about what it’s like to ride in a race and gain invaluable experience. It’s such a thrill to even think about being in a race and I am so excited to have been given this opportunity.
“It is also amazing to be able to raise money for Racing Welfare who are a great support to everyone in the racing community.”
As well as the stable staff races, Racing Welfare will host a number of community events and activities from quiz nights to rounders tournaments, with the aim of bringing the racing community together. All events are listed on the Racing Staff Week website and are free for racing staff to attend.
Back for a second year is the Racing Staff Week ‘Thank You’ competition, where those working in the racing and Thoroughbred breeding industries are encouraged to give a shout out to colleagues who go above and beyond to help others. To enter, staff simply need to submit a video clip saying ‘thank you’ to the person they have nominated. The videos entered into the competition will be judged by the Betfair podcast panel: Kevin Blake, Tony Calvin and Vanessa Ryle and winners will be announced on Betfair’s Weighed In podcast on Monday 3rd July. The winners (nominator and nominee) will each receive a £250 One4all shopping voucher. Further information on the competition can be found here.
Racing Welfare’s Head of Community Engagement, Adam Ferguson, said: “Racing Staff Week is the highlight in our community calendar. It provides a brilliant opportunity for everyone in the industry to celebrate the dedication, passion and skill of racing’s people, whether that be through supporting our stable staff riders, attending or hosting a community event or entering the thank you competition. We’re looking forward to getting started on Saturday and encourage anyone working in racing to get involved if they can.”
For more information on Racing Staff Week head to racingstaffweek.com.