Sam Weatherley to attend UAE conference
Leading New Zealand apprentice Sam Weatherley will further his racing education in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates, next week.
Weatherley, who will be accompanied by NZTR riding mentor Noel Harris, will attend the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak International Federation of Horse Racing Academies (IFHRA) Training and Education Conference.
Weatherley will leave Auckland on Tuesday night, after riding at Ellerslie that day, and return on November 13.
The 18-year-old, who is apprenticed to Matamata trainer Lance O’Sullivan, was New Zealand’s leading apprentice last term, with 67 wins, and finished in the top 10 on the jockeys’ premiership.
He has also made a strong start to the new season. He is in second place on the national premiership and recorded the second black-type win of his career when successful on Grazia in the listed Christchurch Casino Spring Classic at Riccarton Park last weekend.
Weatherley will not have a race ride in Abu Dhabi but will participate in the jockey workshops, which will focus on video replay analysis, techniques for interacting with media and use of social media platforms. Expert advice will be provided by leading riding coaches from around the world.
The riders will also attend a race meeting at the Abu Dhabi Sports and Equestrian Club, with the racing programme including the World Apprentice Championship Final.
Weatherley had been invited to ride in a heat of the Sheikha Fatima World Apprentice Championship in Algiers last month but was unable to travel when his Algerian visa did not arrive in time.
Both Harris and Weatherley will participate in the Abu Dhabi conference and other topics on the agenda include healthier riders, career planning for jockeys and the IFHRA mentorship programmes.