Members of the BHA’s Youth Collaboration Group (YCG) have spoken positively about how it has progressed their involvement in racing and helped produce ideas to attract younger fans to the sport as the group marks its two-year anniversary this week.
Organised by Careers In Racing, the recruitment and promotional arm of the BHA, the YCG was established in July 2021 with the aim of giving young people a say in how the sport is promoted to potential fans and employees, while also providing skills and work experience in the industry.
The YGC consists of 22 members aged between 14-22 who have provided input into designing merchandise, critiqued promotional and education videos produced by the sport and created content to share on social media providing insight into different aspects of racing.
Ellie Waters, 19, said she joined the YGC after becoming more interested in racing during her A-levels and wanting to assist more people in discovering what careers there are on offer.
“I wanted to help young people get involved in racing like I’ve done myself,” she said. “It can sometimes be a struggle to find the right places on the internet, so we’re created content that can be shared on social media to help people.”
Creating engaging content is central to what Abby Beckett wanted to provide for the YCG after joining trainer Gary Moore as a member of stable staff in December.
Beckett, 18, joined the YCG after doing work experience at the BHA and said: “It’s taught me lots of skills being part of it and I’ve had the chance to do lots of things behind the scenes, like going to the sampling unit at the races.
“We’ve been asked to help give ideas about what might help to get people involved, and I make sure I post lots of videos and photos riding out that people enjoy, which gives them a different view.”
The chance to talk about racing with other young people and to have a stake in shaping its message is what prompted Samantha Martin,18, to join the YGC, and she encouraged others with the same views to take part via the Careers In Racing website.
“It’s good to have a stake in something I’m passionate about, which is getting young people into racing,” she said. “It’s good to be able to influence what’s going on.
“I’m realistic in that there’s only so much we can have an influence over but it’s nice to be able to have that conversation. The more we can get the word out there about it the better.”