During the “Boot Camp” phase of the Cadetship, students are encouraged to begin their morning with a run. Depending on the string are in, you will either have stable duties in the morning or the afternoon. If you have stable duties in the morning, the day’s jobs and priorities are written out for you to follow on the blackboard. After stable duties, you catch, handle, groom and saddle the assigned horses for the day, which is followed by a riding session where you will learn trackriding skills under the watchful eyes of your instructors.
From noon to 1.00 p.m. is lunch and prepare for our afternoon classes. Afternoon classes are all focused on different areas of the thoroughbred industry and are taught via an online module taking into account covid19 restrictions. Classes are over at 3:00p.m. when you either do our afternoon stable duties or go home and plan for tomorrow.
Stable Duties are a key part of what you do, and morning and afternoon stable duties are assigned to different strings within the program. After your morning stable duties, you proceed with handling, grooming, tacking up and riding horses in one of the arenas or around the track.
After the practical lessons, it’s lunchtime! From 1.00 p.m. onwards, afternoon classes begin with topics ranging from breeding to first aid. On Monday after classes, you have a weekly gym session to get you physically fit. At 4.00 p.m., you either have afternoon stable duties or back to the university.
Wednesday’s are excursion day, where anything to do with the racing or breeding industry is explored. From race days to barrier trials, tours of Ranvet, or hearing from top experts in their respective fields, no part of the racing industry is off-limits here.
The weekends are your free time. Boot Camp runs through the Autumn Carnival so in previous years Cadets have taken advantage of great racing and headed into Randwick or Rosehill.
Students will be provided with an Explorer Cadetship Uniform which they will wear each day.
Fitness is key to working in the Thoroughbred Industry, so Cadets are encouraged to go for a run each morning.
MORNING STABLE DUTIES which may include: hand walking horses, un-rugging, cleaning out boxes or yards and refilling with shavings as required, clean water buckets and refill, grooming of horses, health checks of horses, trot ups, sweep walkways and morning feeds. checking fences, grading arenas or tracks, inspecting tracks or watching track work at a local racecourse.
Students will ride a horse which will be suited to their level. Students will learn to ride to instruction both in the indoor arena, outdoor arena and on the 600-metre track.
Over the program students will be required to ride different horses allowing them to gain more experience. Students will need to develop important riding skills which includes following written and verbal instructions of their instructor.
Once students have finished riding, they will learn how to wash down and check over their horses as is done in a racing stable. Horses will then put in their day paddocks.
Students will have an hour for lunch and have the option to go back to their apartment to make their own lunch, alternatively, there are two Cafés (where lunch can be purchased).
After lunch students will focus on the theory components of their learning. An example of the topics that will be covered are: History of Australian Racing and Breeding, the Rules of Racing, OH & S Procedures, Self-management, Transport of Horses, Personal Health and Fitness, Feeding Programs, Thoroughbred Industry Career Options, Racehorse Performance, Emergency Situations and Veterinary Topics.
Following the theory sessions, students will attend to the horses again, including: hand-walking, skipping out yards and boxes, feed and watering the horses.
End of day – free time.
Dinner – Students will be required to arrange their own dinner at their apartments.
Throughout the 13 week program, each week students will gain valuable insight into the thoroughbred industry through ‘Industry Days’. Industry Days will include going on excursions to the races, yearling sales, morning track work and stud farms, along with hearing from leading trainers, jockeys, bloodstock agents, media and administrators about their careers in the industry.
The Explorer Cadetship Program won’t all be about learning thoroughbred related skills, it will include teaching student’s valuable life skills and at Boot Camp, there will be a different topic covered. Some of the topics will include work ethic, being on time and being reliable, personal presentation and language, manners, self-respect and respect for others, how to conduct yourself and how to be interviewed, how to greet people and how to speak to owners/clients, personal motivation, health and fitness (mental health), healthy eating habits, how to work in a team and how to resolve conflict.