We caught up with Clare Loughane and Genevieve Pretorius at DML Racing to discuss their views on apprenticeships.

It was great to hear from Clare Loughnane, racing secretary, and level 3 senior equine racing groom apprentice, Genevieve Pretorius, at DML Racing to discuss their views on apprenticeships.

Clare says, “More young people need to be introduced to the racing industry and apprenticeships are a great way of doing this. Working with enthusiastic people who are eager to learn is rewarding because we watch them grow and become an asset to the team. Studying an apprenticeship encourages learners to progress onto higher qualifications and helps with staff retention.

We enjoy giving young people the opportunity to get involved in racing and to learn their trade on the job. Racing is a practical industry, so it is more realistic to learn in a working environment. We have a fantastic team with a wealth of knowledge and experience to teach our apprentices. Dealing with real-life experiences and situations adds more to their experience and is more valuable over what they may read from a textbook or taught in a classroom.

The team at Haddon Training are very professional and approachable. They have worked with several of our apprentices and offer flexibility for those not wishing to stay away. They are always structured with their approach and communicate very well. The students have deadlines, know their goals, and get regular feedback at visits.

I would advise apprentices to work hard and do everything to the best of their ability. It does not matter what you do in life, hard work always pays off.”

Genevieve says, “Animals have always been in my life. My dad is a vet and from a young age I have always loved horses.

When I was ten, I was privileged to receive an unbroken gypsy cob from my parents. Racehorse trainer, Chris Kellett, offered to break him in at his racing stables, Blythe Stables. My weekends and school holidays were spent at the stables, helping out with the racehorses and learning to ride.

During my GCSEs, I started a part-time job with DML Racing. I knew I wanted to pursue a full-time career with racehorses. I had a conversation with Clare who advised me to start an apprenticeship with them, which allowed me to learn and work on the job.

I successfully completed my level 2 equine racing groom apprenticeship, and I am currently working towards my level 3 senior equine racing groom apprenticeship. I have really enjoyed working because I learn new skills every day. There is a variety of theory and practical work, so it keeps the course interesting and stimulating.

The best part of my apprenticeship is watching the horses I ride and care for improve at home and on the track. I love attending the races with my horses and seeing my hard work pay off. I have had the opportunity to visit many of the tracks around England, including the famous Cazoo Derby Festival at Epsom Downs Racecourse.

My self-confidence has grown since starting my apprenticeship. It has taught me how to work with a team, where good communication is vital.

Without my employers, Mark Loughnane and Clare, I would not be where I am today. They have given me endless support and help if I am struggling with a problem inside or outside of work. My Trainer Coach, Sam Davies-Thomas, is great at explaining things in a clear and simple way and I know he is always at the end of the phone if I have any questions.

After my apprenticeship, I would love to gain more responsibility within my job. I hope to improve my riding and work towards riding more challenging horses.”

Thank you Clare and Genevieve – We look forward to seeing your future success.

If you would like more information on our racing apprenticeship, please contact us here.