The cross-industry scheme will be aiming to take further training and development opportunities out to 2,400 members of Racing’s workforce.
Launched to coincide with the start of Racing Staff Week, the Racing industry has come together this summer to roll out a far-reaching scheme which will help racing staff develop the horsemanship and life skills they need to enhance their career progression and encourage staff retention in the industry.
The nationwide Regional Staff Development Programme (RSDP) will take training and development out to racing’s workforce, with the objective that 2,400 racing staff – well over one third of the sport’s workforce – will participate in development/training activities associated with the scheme in the next three years, in locations that are convenient to them.
The scheme forms one part of the industry’s staff training and development policy, which offers a total of 35 recognised learning platforms offering a total of 35,000 people training days per year.
Following a successful pilot which took a range of training initiatives directly into yards and training centres, the Racing Foundation has provided a grant of nearly £160,000 for the first 18 months of a 36 month project to extend the regional training to Lambourn, Malton, Middleham and Newmarket as well as the outlying areas nationwide.
The Racing Foundation hopes that by providing further funding, momentum will not be lost and a sustainable industry funding model will be established to deliver the second half of the project and beyond should it prove successful.
The programme offers free or subsidised training across a range of subject areas including improving riding and horsemanship skills through coaching activities with the use of mobile training vehicles. Equine first aid, horse management, fitness, nutrition, finance and lifestyle subjects will be offered with opportunities for staff to gain industry and national qualifications.
Training will come in various forms, including demonstrations by world-class coaches and practical skills development by vets and physiotherapists. Staff may wish to improve their
horse care skills, undertake basic numeracy and literacy skills development or learn more about the industry they work in.
Building on the success of the Jockey Coaching Programme, senior staff may also apply to train as Rider Coaches, giving them the coaching skills to support younger and inexperienced colleagues in their yards.
The following ambitious three-year targets have been set for the scheme:
The Programme is a collaborative arrangement with input from Racing Welfare, National Trainers’ Federation (NTF), Thoroughbred Breeders Association (TBA) and National Association of Racing Staff (NARS) as well as the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) and industry training providers.
Four Regional Coordinators have been appointed who will oversee activity in the racing centres and outlying areas. The Northern Racing College (NRC) is responsible for the overall management of the programme with the British Racing School (BRS) leading activities in the south and the National Stud offering training to stud staff.
Gill Greeves, Vocational Training Manager for the BHA, said:
George McGrath, Chief Executive of NARS, said:
Rob Hezel, Chief Executive of the Racing Foundation, said:
Stephen Padgett, Chief Executive of the Northern Racing College (NRC), said:
Trainer Daniel Kubler said: