Appearance Money Scheme (AMS) at Non Criteria Fixtures

Some trainers have been enquiring about prize money below expected  levels at certain meetings scheduled later this month and further through Program Book 3. These meetings (listed below) are “non criteria” meetings which are commercially very attractive to racecourses but sit outside the optimal time of the fixture list. These non-criteria meetings do not receive central funding including Appearance Money Scheme (AMS) money. Most courses running these fixtures have upgraded their own executive contribution to make up some of the shortfall in prize money but others have chosen not to. Please be aware of this when making plans for your horses throughout the summer and beyond.

The upcoming non-criteria fixtures are:

Redcar 22/07/2018

Beverley 26/08/2018

Hamilton Park 23/09/2018

Stratford on Avon 20/10/2018

EU citizens – their status post-Brexit

The Home Office has provided information on how EU citizens and their families living in the UK can secure their long-term status here with the same entitlements to work, study and access public services as now.

EU citizens and family members who, by 31st December 2020, have been continuously resident in the UK for five years will be eligible to apply under the scheme and will be granted “settled status” which will allow them to stay in the UK indefinitely.

EU citizens and family members who arrive by 31st December 2020 but will not yet have been continuously resident here for five years will be granted “pre-settled status” under the Scheme which will enable them to stay in the UK until they have reached the five-year threshold.  At that point they can apply for settled status.

“Continuously resident” in the UK generally means that the person must not have been absent from the UK for more than six months in total in any 12-month period.  There is no restriction on the number of absences permitted, provided that the total period of absence does not exceed six months in any 12-month period.

Close family members (a spouse, civil partner, durable partner, dependant child or grandchild, and dependant parent or grandparent) living overseas will still be able to join an EU citizen resident here after 31st December 2020 where the relationship existed at that date and continues to exist.

Registration will involve an online digital application which will require the applicant:

  • to prove their identity and nationality (which can generally be done through their passport or EU ID card)
  • to provide evidence that they have been continuously resident in the UK for the five years required for settled status. This may involve an automated check through HMRC data or the applicant will be able to upload documents to prove their residency – more details of what documents will be acceptable will be published by the Government later.

The applicant will also need to provide a facial image which will be checked to see that it matches the photograph on the passport or ID card and to declare any serious criminal convictions.

The application process is not open yet but is expected to open later in the year.  The application fee under the Scheme will be £65 for an adult and £32.50 for a child although if an EU citizen already holds permanent residence there will be no fee.

Further information will be provided in due course but trainers may wish to ensure that any of the employees to whom this may apply are aware of the procedures and that if they are wishing to apply for settled status do not absent themselves from the country for more than 6 months in any 12 month period.

Increased weighing out allowance for new jockey’s safety vest

The BHA has announced that, from 1 October 2018, the minimum acceptable standard for a safety vest (body protector) for race riding for jockeys of all disciplines will be increased. As a result, all jockeys will be required to wear the new Level 2 body protectors, rather than the current Level 1 model. (This does not affect the rules for stable staff.)

This change is because the Level 2 vest offers superior protection of up to 50% to the Level 1 vest against direct blows such as kicks. The relevant rule – Schedule (D)2, Equipment PART 1 – has been updated and Rule (B)22 – Weighing out procedure has also been changed to allow an increase of 1lb in the allowance at the scales when weighing out.

Guide to offering work experience

The NTF needs your help to promote work experience for potential employees in racing yards.

Work experience is an excellent way to show that working in a racing yard can be an enjoyable career. Especially for young people, it helps them understand what to expect so they are more likely to stay once they start working.

We know that some trainers have become wary of offering work experience; they are worried about possible health and safety risks or insurance restrictions. To reassure employers and potential employees, the NTF has been working with the BHA to provide some guidance.

The result is this Work Experience Toolkit

We are planning to promote work experience on the new Racing Groom website, which the NTF is launching soon. The website will show all the positive aspects of working in racing yards and will include a Trainer Locator which can be used by anyone looking for work experience. We will be able to show them which trainers offer work experience and whether those trainers have suitable accommodation.

If you would be prepared to offer work experience to students from schools and colleges, please contact Shelley Perham by email at s.perham@racehorsetrainers.org or 07753 982052. She would also need to know if you are primarily a flat, jump or dual purpose yard and what kind of accommodation you can offer – male/female; on the yard or locally; if locally, how far from the yard?

Thank you very much for your assistance.

John Dunlop (1939 – 2018)

Today’s Racing Post is packed with memories of John Dunlop, who died at the weekend. For us at the NTF, John was all this and more. He gave so much time to the Federation and as a valued Council member instigated the constitutional review which led to the current regional structure and Presidential Triumvirate system.

As a trustee of the NTF Charitable Trust, which makes training grants to racing employees, John helped staff to develop their skills and so forge a career in the sport. This was typical of his approach to people – full of encouragement and practical support. He will be greatly missed and our thoughts are with all his family.

Increase in weighing out allowance for new jockey’s safety vest

The BHA has announced that from 1 October 2018 the minimum acceptable standard for a safety vest (body protector) for race riding for jockeys of all disciplines will be increased. As a result, all jockeys will be required to wear the new Level 2 body protectors, rather than the current Level 1 model. (This does not affect stable staff, who must use Level 3 safety vests.)

This change is because the Level 2 vest offers superior protection of up to 50% to the Level 1 vest against direct blows such as kicks. The relevant rule – Schedule (D)2, Equipment PART 1 – has been updated and Rule (B)22 – Weighing out procedure has also been changed to allow an increase of 1lb in the allowance at the scales when weighing out.

Message about early publication of 2yo ratings from BHA Handicapper Graeme Smith

Following the successful of publishing of full list of 2yo ratings prior to entries for the first nursery being made for the first time last year, we have done so again in 2018, with the list being published on Tuesday 26th June.

The reason for keeping nursery ratings private until late July in the past was that ratings for two-year-olds at that time of year are particularly fluid. For example, a horse may be rated 75 after posting his best effort when second in a novice event, but if several of those he’d run against post figures significantly higher or lower on their next appearance he could have his rating changed dramatically without having run again.

Such movements can be unpopular and are, unfortunately, common place with two-year-olds in early summer as the various form lines are put to the test on handicap terms. Keeping ratings private meant there was less instability for participants as we ran these processes, and the fact the early nurseries are run without rating bands attached (0-70, 0-85, etc) made this possible.

Nurseries continue to be run throughout July without rating bands being attached to give us the flexibility to frame the most competitive races possible. However, in the spirit of transparency and openness we feel it is appropriate to put our data in the public domain while we do this, and simply ask for owners and trainers to be understanding while normal processes are run to bed the file down.

Should you have any questions, feel free to contact me on gdsmith@britishhorseracing.com or 01904 790457.