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Fifth-annual Youth Racing Experience and Scholarship Program at Arapahoe Park

February 27, 2006     E-mail this page to a friend!

The Rocky Mountain Quarter Horse Association (RMQHA) will hold it’s fifth-annual Youth Racing Experience and Scholarship Program at Arapahoe Park, in Aurora, Colorado on July 29th & 30th, 2006. This one of a kind program allows high school and college students a behind the scenes look at horse racing with the opportunity to compete for scholarships.

Held in conjunction with the RMQHA’s Day at the Races program for the general public, the Youth Racing Experience will allow 24 youth the opportunity to experience quarter horse racing up close. Working hands-on with licensed trainers, the participants will spend two action packed days on the backside. All aspects of racing will be covered, from assisting trainers in prepping a horse for a race, making mock entries, understanding a stewards job, talking with jockeys, to watching a race being called from the announcers booth.

Participants will get an up close, behind the scenes look at horse racing. The two days will be packed full of seminars and real hands on experience working with trainers, track management and the many other people involved in operating a horse race track.

Work with Trainers - This is where participants will spend the largest amount of time. You will get to see what it takes to train a racehorse, from morning workouts, to race preparation, to evening feed time. Licensed trainers will be your guides to the many daily activities they perform in getting a horse fit and keeping them healthy so they can race.

Farrier – Learn why and how a racehorse is shod differently than your roping or barrel horse.

Starting Gate – Many a race is won or lost at the starting gate. You’ll get to see up close why loading a gate is a little different that loading Old Paint in a trailer. Horse racing is horse against horse, but there is always the mechanical end of racing as well.

Entry Office - A race card doesn’t just happen. Races must be written, horses must be entered, races must fill, eligibility checked and then entries are drawn, before a daily race card is ready.

Test Barn – What is the test barn? What is tested? Which horses are tested? You’ll learn all about this important part of race day.

Track Veterinarian – He doesn’t treat horses, so what does this important track official do? He will tell you about the important role he plays in horse racing.

Stewards Office – Racing is highly regulated and the Stewards are the officials charged with daily regulation. Who are these important people and just what their jobs entail will be explained.

Jockeys Room – Meet the jockeys and get a glimpse into their world. You’ll learn what it takes to be a jockey and the hard work and skill their profession demands.

Announcers Booth – Watch a race being called from the announcers booth. Find out how he can call every horse by name and keep the excitement up for the bettors.

Winners Circle Picture – Getting to the Winners Circle is what it is all about, so we will make sure you get your picture in the WINNERS CIRCLE!

Besides the hands on experience and meetings with track personnel, you will get the opportunity during breaks and lunch to meet with:

AQHA Field Representative – What the AQHA’s role is in horse racing and the support it gives to owners, trainers and tracks.

Univ. of Arizona Race Track Industry School – A one of a kind program with scholarships available to participants will be explained.

Arapahoe Park Management – Your host for the Youth Racing Experience will answer your questions about the multitude of activities that must be performed to put a race meet together.

The Youth Racing Experience is open to all high school and college students. The RMQHA’s Race Division awards scholarships to attendees. These scholarships are based on interest in the horse industry, interviews and scholastic achievement. Additionally, the University of Arizona’s Race Track Industry Program will be in attendance and will award a matching scholarship to their university. Two paths of study are available with the Race Track Industry Program: a business based course of study, which includes marketing, management, and other business courses: the other track is more of a traditional equine science program with courses in nutrition, physiology and reproduction.

As space is limited, applicants are encouraged to apply early. For more information or an application, interested students should call the RMQHA office (303) 296-1143, Lucy Gasich (303)774-9158 or email