NZTR Trackwork Rider programme
A new assessment programme for those applying for trackwork rider licences will become mandatory from Tuesday, 1 February 2022.
The need for change and the raising of licensing standards was flagged in the Industry Reshaping document which outlined NZTR’s Strategic Priorities when released in April 2021, and has been referred to in the recently released Training & Licensing Consultation Paper. Significant work has been undertaken by NZTR to help address the safety of trackwork riders and this programme has been developed in consultation with the NZ Trainers’ Association.
The new programme will assess individuals who are applying for a track work licence for the first time and will ensure their basic riding ability and industry knowledge has been assessed before a licence is issued.
The programme will be run by the NZTR education and training team and will include regional assessors. The assessors are skilled and experienced licence holders who will sign-off riders once they display the minimum standard of competency to ride trackwork at half pace on an assessment day.
After an open “expressions of interest” call, followed by the process of interviews and inspections assisted by the NZ Trainers’ Association, NZTR has contracted Donavan Mansour, (North) Barbara Verlinden (Lower South Island), Ross Beckett (Canterbury) and Kim Clapperton (Central District) to fulfil these positions.
Anyone wishing to attain a NZTR track work riding licence from 1 February 2022, will be required to follow a three-step process:
- Lodge a C62 licence application form with the NZTR Licensing department.
- Sign up for the NZQA track rider programme AND complete the associated trainee papers along with the Massey University multi-choice online industry test; and
- Book and attend a practical riding assessment day at their preferred regional accreditation centre.
NZTR will provide more detailed guidance on the process on application. As is noted above, the prospective trackwork rider will complete the associated Primary ITO paperwork and, an online industry based multi-choice test to demonstrate knowledge of equine welfare, trackwork rules and safety procedures.
Like a drivers’ licence assessment, the online Massey test will consist of 20 randomly selected questions. A pass mark of 18 out of 20 is required and there is the option to re-sit.
Where language or learning difficulties occur, the prospective trackwork rider can seek assistance from their employing trainer. There is an expectation that the trainer will take an active interest in helping their staff member achieve the licence. The trainer is expected to allow time for the applicant to complete the online industry test and the NZQA track rider programme.
Following completion of the Primary ITO and Massey assessments, the prospective trackwork rider will take part in the practical assessment. The practical element will include a basic test of strength and fitness; groundwork; saddling; and riding at progressive levels from confined area and to a training track.
A successful assessment will allow the rider to ride slow work up to half-pace (18 seconds per 200m). To ensure a robust system of accreditation the NZTR Riding Master will also be involved in the assessment.
The rider will be eligible to upgrade to a Fast Work riding licence once they have demonstrated competency riding fast work. This assessment will be completed by the employer and an experienced jockey or trackwork rider. They must complete and sign the C63 licence application form and lodge it with the NZTR licensing department. Please note, the two people endorsing the applicant’s skills are declaring that the rider has the competency to ride fast work on a registered Thoroughbred horse.
The fee of $110 includes both the assessment and the trackwork rider licence fee of $30. There is no additional fee to upgrade to a Fast Work licence.
To get the employee to the stage where they are demonstrating the skills to ride half-pace in a safe manner, the employer is expected to have a suitable and officially retired Thoroughbred they can use to provide training. If they do not have a suitable Thoroughbred in the workplace the people listed below as Tuition Providers are available to teach trackwork skills privately.
Because of these changes, NZTR will no longer issue a Stablehand (Riding) licence. Going forward, every new rider who wishes to ride racehorses at trackwork must have completed the trackwork rider assessment and must have either a Slow Trackwork Rider or a Fast Trackwork Rider Licence.
021 078 8355
445 Pound Road
027 437 1940
022 108 5006
TRACKWORK RIDING TUITION PROVIDERS
021 078 8355
027 271 9852
Phil Stevens – Northwood Farm
35 McLeods Rd Sefton
027 519 9470
022 108 5006
021 588 338