Celebrating passion, commitment and free ice-creams in stable staff week

  • A fun insight into life in a race yard has been released ahead of Racing Staff Week.

    The Racing Welfare initiative, sponsored by Betfair, runs from today (1 July) until 8 July.

    Equine Productions’ snappy “second a day” film features more than 100 racing staff from across the UK as well as cameos from Wocket Woy star Mattie Bachelor and ITV Racing’s Ollie Bell.

    All 41 race meetings this week are taking part, with some tracks offering prizes and gifts to stable staff.

    These include free ice creams for racing staff at York today, while Cartmel racecourse will be giving workers sticky toffee puddings to take home. Many courses are also offering increased best turned out prizes.

    Lingfield and Doncaster will host the two stable staff charity races — the Betfair Three Feathers Cup today and the Betfair Clock Tower Cup on 7 July respectively.

    “We are thrilled at the great initiatives being run for racing staff throughout the week, both from racecourses and industry bodies,” said Dawn Goodfellow, Racing Welfare chief executive.

    “Racing Staff Week will not only create awareness among racegoers about the vital role of racing staff, but will also show staff, from across studs, stables and racecourses, how much their skill and dedication is appreciated.”

    The National Trainers Federation is launching a £4,000 award for racing grooms in memory of the late racehorse trainer Toby Balding.

    The annual award will go to a member of stable staff to further their career and train for a higher-level qualification or to undertake personal development training.

    Meanwhile the Racehorse Owners Association (ROA) is putting money towards barbecues or social events at 30 racing yards.

    “The great care and effort given by staff looking after racehorses is very much appreciated by their owners,” said ROA chief executive Charlie Liverton.

    “The ROA is delighted the barbecue initiative has proved so popular as it recognises these vital staff and gives owners an opportunity to socialise with them in a relaxed environment.

    Racing Welfare has also organised events for staff in Newmarket, Middleham, Malton and Lambourn, to which owners are also invited.

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    The British Horseracing Authority and Careers in Racing will be hiding 13 “golden tickets” around racecourses and training centres.

    All bar one of these contain £100 high street vouchers, with the 13th containing an invitation for two to the 2018 Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff awards.

    The National Association of Stable Staff will be holding daily draws for Red Letter experience vouchers and a grand prize at the end of the week.

    “This [week] is a great opportunity for everybody associated with racing to show their appreciation for the work the staff do,” said George McGrath, NASS chief executive.

    Racing is a labour of love requiring the staff to work early mornings and late evenings.

    “Racing Staff Week gives the owners and trainers a chance to say thank you to the staff and raises the public’s awareness of the skilled work we do.”

    Visit www.racingstaffweek.com for more details of events and prizes.

    For all the latest news analysis, competition reports, interviews, features and much more, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, on sale every Thursday.

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