A week in the life of the Cadetship program begins with early morning running – health and fitness is a key part of working in the thoroughbred industry.
Stable Duties are a key part of what we do, and morning and afternoon stable duties are assigned to different strings within the program. After morning stable duties, you proceed with handling, grooming, tacking up and riding of the horses for the day in one of the arenas or around the outdoor track. This is a fun but long class with a three-hour masterclass session working with one of our top trainers.
After all that hard work, it’s lunchtime! From 1.00 p.m. onwards, the afternoon classes begin with topics ranging from breeding to first aid. On Monday after the classes, you have one of your weekly gym sessions to keep you mentally and physically at your best. At 4.00 p.m., you either have afternoon stable duties or home time where recovering and socialising are on the agenda.
On Wednesdays, its excursion day, where anything to do with the thoroughbred industry is explored. From race days to barrier trials, tours of Ranvet, talking with Hugh Bowman or hearing from top experts in their respective fields, no part of the racing industry is off-limits here.
The weekends are filled with hanging out with the members of the Explorer Program, going racing and exploring Sydney.
During the “Boot Camp” phase of the Cadetship, our mornings begin with our daily run followed by breakfast and discussing the day ahead. Depending on the string we are in, we either have stable duties in the morning or the afternoon. If we have stable duties in the morning, the day’s jobs and priorities are written out for us to follow on the blackboard. After stable duties, we catch, handle, groom and saddle the assigned horses for the day, which is followed by a three-hour riding session where we learn our craft and perfect our skills under the watchful eyes of our top trainers.
From noon to 1.00 p.m. we have lunch and prepare for our afternoon classes. Our classes are all focused around the racing industry and are taught by the best in the industry in order to make us competent at our stable and stud placement. Classes are over at 4:00 p.m. when we either do our afternoon stable duties or go home and plan for tomorrow.
You will be provided with an Explorer Cadetship Uniform which you will wear on excursion days and days where we are filming and photographing.
Students to wear their uniform and joggers.
Riding boots and safety equipment will be kept in the tack room at Western Sydney TAFE (WST).
From Western Sydney University (WSU) to WST (APPROXIMATELY 2KM’s)
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 walk ways and morning feeds. checking fences, grading arenas or tracks, inspecting tracks or watching track work at a local racecourse.
(YOU WILL NOT RIDE EVERY DAY AT BOOT CAMP)
RIDING PREPARATION AND RIDING: You will ride a horse which will be suited to your level. You will learn to ride to instruction both in the indoor arena, outdoor arena and on the 600-metre track.
Over the program, you will be required to ride different horses allowing you to gain more experience. You will need to develop important riding skills which includes following written and verbal instructions of your 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.
SUPPLIED BY THOROUGHBRED INDUSTRY CAREERS
You will have an hour for lunch and lunch will be supplied by Thoroughbred Industry Careers at the Café on site.
After lunch, you will focus on the theory components of your 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, you will attend to the horses again, including hand-walking, skipping out yards and boxes, feed and watering the horses.
The end of the day/ free time.
Dinner – You will make dinner with your fellow Cadets at your apartments.
Each week, you will attend gym sessions to work on your personal fitness and endurance levels.
Throughout the 3-month program, each week you 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 each week 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.