Race Day Officer
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Barrier Attendant
Clerk of Course
Clerk of Scales
Harness Catcher
Photo Finish Operator
Race Caller
Raceday Swab Official
Starter

Adam Olszanski - Race Caller LOTJ - Cameo

Related Jobs or Working with these Jobs

 

 

Racing Operations

Each Principal Racing Authority (PRA) has a Racing Operations department which run the administrative side of racing. Each PRA has a core vision and it is the role of Racing Operations to co-ordinate their programming, handicapping and other functions into something that ensures the greatest possible outcomes for its stakeholders.

There are many pathways to entering Racing Operations - a strong interest and knowledge of racing is required and a degree such as Sports Management would give somebody the appropriate skills required for the roles.

 

Raceday Officer
Leisure and Entertainment

Racing Officers work under each PRA and are responsible for the co-ordination of race times and fields, adhering to the Australian Rules as well as any Local Rules that relate to their respective PRA. They may undertake a number of other tasks within the administration of racing.

Raceday Officers could be looking after different types of racing: Motorcycle Racing, Dog and Horse Racing and Yacht racing!


  
ANZSCO ID: 452318

Alternative names: Racing Officer, Race Meeting Officer,

Specialisations:

Casual Positions

During peak racing times a number of casual positions are also often required. These include roles such as:

  • Car Park Attendants

  • Ticket Sellers

  • Gate Attendants

  • Food and Beverage Staff

  • Promotional Staff

 

Knowledge, skills and attributes
  
The basic skills required for the above casual positions are good customer service skills, computer skills and cash handling skills. The length of employment will vary between different race clubs, however the experience will help you learn more about the racing industry, giving you race day experience and the opportunity to meet people within the industry.

The Race Meeting Officer is responsible for controlling the operational responsibilities of the
clubs leading up to, during, and after assigned race meetings, and where appropriate, official trials.

  • Essential that applicants are competent in all aspects of Microsoft Office suite
    including Word and Excel as well as a working knowledge of Microsoft Publisher

  •  An understanding of Harvey, the harness racing national database is also
    desirable - if the Race Meeting Officer is involved in harness racing.

 

Flemington Race Course March 2023
Flemington Race Course at its best - imagine the organisation to do this!
(Source: Victoria Racing Club)

Duties and Tasks

  • Race Meeting Officer to attend all rostered race meetings and trials.

  • Co-ordination of racing operational activities relating to race meetings and
    official trials

  •  Operational race day set up tasks

  •  Control of the race day office

  •  Totalisator and cash handling supervision

  •  Totalisator and casual staff rostering

  •  Processing of reports to PRA and other agencies

  •  Financial reconciliations

  •  Publication of race books

  •  Regulatory compliance - compliance with all relevant regulations and statutory requirements (eg OH&S standards and Purchasing Policies) in order to minimise risk to exposure and liabilities.

  •  Administrative support

  •  Liaison with Integrity Officers

  •  Liaison with Club Committees

Harness Racing
(Source: Racing Queensland)

Working conditions

The Race Meeting Officer co-ordinates all operational activities involved in the preparation of the racecourse, including totalisator and publication of race books. The Race Meeting Officer also manages the rostering and activities of the casual staff that work on race days.

The working week is not standard as the Raceday Officer is expected to be in attendance at all racedays.

The Race Meeting Officer will be responsible for the reconciliation of financial and totalisator
reporting to Finance and Administration at the conclusion of each race meeting.


Tools and technologies

Competent in all aspects of Microsoft Office suite including Word and Excel as well as a working knowledge of Microsoft Publisher.

An understanding of HarVey, the harness racing national database if involved in Harness Racing.


 Education and training/entrance requirements
   

You can work as a Dog or Horse Racing Official without formal qualifications, however, a certificate III or IV in racing services or racing integrity may be useful.

 

Barrier Attendant
Leisure and Entertainment

 

Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingSkill Level 1Skill Level 2

 

 A Barrier Attendant is a horse handler, part of the race day team at the beginning of a race to ensure horses are calm and safe at the starting gates. Future Growth Strong
  
A Barrier Attendant works efficiently to help horses into the barriers, climbs up the side of the individual gate and sometimes stays with a horse keeping them calm until the barriers fly open.

ANZSCO ID: 899999

Alternative names: Racecourse Barrier Attendant,

Specialisations: Regional or Metropolitan races

Knowledge, skills and attributes

  • Preparation of barrier and starting equipment
  • Recognise damaged or defective gear
  • Knowledge of horse behaviour
  • Knowledge of horse handling skills - Excellent horse handling skills and ability to work under pressure
  • Strategies to load difficult horses to minimise the risk to self, horses and others
  • Ability to communicate with Starter about any problems
  • Ability to corner and capture any loose horses
  • Ability to assist fallen riders
  • Able to communicate to Starter and/or Stewards of outcomes of barrier loading and start
  • For Thoroughbred Racing: Knowledge of the thoroughbred racing industry – Racing Operations, WHS and the Rules of Racing


Barrier Attendants
(Source: Herald Sun)

Duties and Tasks

The Barrier Attendant keeps the horses and jockeys safe, checks that approved equipment is being worn and re-fit any damaged equipment. Barrier Attendants are responsible for the loading of horses into the barriers on race days. They provide vital support for the jockeys and horses in and behind the barriers.
  
Some horses wear gear that is only worn on the way to the barriers and it must be removed by the barrier attendants prior to the race start. They must also communicate with the starter to ensure all horses are ready and able to be released for a fair start to the race each time.

  • Racing gear is fitted, adjusted and replaced in a timely manner
  • Horses are loaded into barriers according to Starter's instruction
  • Riders are assisted as required
  • Relay problems to Starter and others
  • Identify any potential track problems or incidents
  • Move barriers for the next race
  • Return barriers to storage area and clean.
  • Report any damaged or maintenance needs
  • Adhere to the operating procedures applicable to the role at race meetings and barrier trials
  • Assist in implementing relevant starting procedures at barrier trials and jump outs
  • Ensure that they are being safety conscious at all times including wearing the applicable safety equipment in their role/s
  • Willing to work as a casual barrier attendant at jumpouts, barrier trials and race meetings as rostered
  • Ensure that they are wearing the correct uniform at all times
  • Attend Racing Stewards enquiries where required


Clerk of Course looking on
Barrier Attendant leading a horse with Clerk of Course watching
(Source: TB Industry)

Tools and Technologies

Pakenham Racing Club in south-east Victoria, Australia, was asked by their barrier attendants (handlers) to improve the safety and ergonomics of their current starting gate. Budget constraints did not allow for a new gate, so it was a case of examining the identified issues and developing a solution.

Recognising that the key issue was to ensure efficient and safe mobility for the barrier attendants, Steriline developed some cost-effective improvements to the gate, which included:

1. Lowering the gate by using low-profile tyres to reduce the height for barrier attendants to climb up,
2. Installing a moveable safety step to provide easier and safer access for the barrier attendants; and
3. Putting a handle on the rear of the gate to assist the barrier attendants to step up.


Two of the above solutions have been available and in use on some Steriline gates for a few years, however, the safety step was a new solution that Steriline designed after feedback and consultation from the industry.

Rather than putting in a fixed step which could result in the horse getting trapped underneath, Steriline designed an innovative movable step solution.

The step is made from hot dip galvanised steel for longevity, it can move backwards and upwards, out of the way of an obstruction or horse, returning back to its natural position after contact with the obstruction. Horses are known to move backwards in the stall, putting pressure on the back gates, and occasionally kicking out under the back gates. Using the Steriline step design, the step moves out of the way so a horse will not injure themselves on a solid step protruding under the back gates. Therefore, protecting the horse, as well as providing easier and safer access for the handlers.

The step increases safety for the barrier attendants by making it easier and more ergonomic for them to manoeuvre up and into the stalls whilst loading the horses.


Safety Step Down and Back
Safety Step Down & Back
(Source: Steriline Racing)

Paddock view
Paddock view of movable step
(Source: Steriline Racing)

 

Working conditions

physically demanding
working outdoors

Barrier Attendants must have experience in handling horses and are employed by Race Clubs. As it is a job that only involves work on race days, most barrier attendants also hold other jobs.
  
Barrier Attendants may also work as stablehands and move into this field when their horse handling skills become more advanced.

Barrier Attendants and Animal Rescue
https://youtu.be/KqR9wRbr2aA  

 

 


Education and training/entrance requirements

Generally, the base qualifications will be the same but some states offer additional training on the required skill sets for Barrier Attendants.

Available Courses
RGR10108 – Certificate I in Racing (Stablehand)
RGR20221 – Certificate II in Racing Industry
RGR30218 – Certificate III in Racing (Stablehand)

Barrier Attendants are given on the job training.

 

Did You Know?

The minimum number of barrier attendants for horse meetings conducted in NSW is as
follows:

Metropolitan: Ten attendants
Other TAB: One attendant per two horses (maximum eight)
Non-TAB: Four attendants (ten plus starters – five attendants)
  
In the case of meetings conducted in the country and provincial areas, the Chief
Steward has the authority to adjust the number of barrier staff dependent upon the
balance of horse numbers.

Each member of the barrier staff handling horses on raceday, are to be supplied by
the Race Club, with a safety vest and a helmet, both of a standard approved by
Stewards. The safety vest and helmet must be worn at all times when handling
horses at the start. Safety vests must be fully zipped and worn in accordance with
manufacturer’s specifications and helmet chin straps properly fastened. Footwear
should be made of leather. Sports shoes or open toe shoes are not permitted.
Should a uniform not be supplied by the club to barrier staff, the minimum standard of
dress shall be long pants and t-shirt. Shorts are not permitted. No unauthorised
advertising is to be worn by barrier staff.

Barrier staff must only be transported to starts in vehicles designed for that purpose.
Due to occupational health & safety requirements, barrier staff must not be
transported on the back of table-top trucks or utilities etc.

All barrier stalls, except those used in the conduct of picnic race meetings must have
fitted, Head Dividers of a design approved by Stewards. Barrier attendants must take
particular care when holding a horses head to the side that it is not positioned behind
the head divider and in all circumstances the horses head is released as the start is
effected.
(Source: Racing NSW)

Did you know that horses can jump from a standing start to 50kmph?!


Barrier attendant sisters on the front line
1 September 2022
By Darren Cartwright
Racing Queensland


Barrier Attendants Sisters
Caitlyn (left) & Alyssa McDougall (right)

Sisters Alyssa and Caitlyn McDougall are only in their early twenties, but have spent more than a quarter of their life working behind the gates as barrier attendants in South East Queensland.

The pair has been leading horses into barriers and been a calming influence for agitated thoroughbreds just before a field jumps since they were 15.

The sisters usually work behind the starting stalls at Kilcoy, Gatton, Esk, and at Corbould Park on the Sunshine Coast where they are pictured at the gates.

Their ‘racing careers' started when their father Brad, who is a clerk of the course at several tracks, asked his daughters if they would like to help behind the barriers, Alyssa (pictured right) said.

“We’ve always been around horses from a very early age. Dad had racehorses, and Caitlyn and I had mini trotters,” Alyssa said.

“We were 15 and still in school and Dad was working at meetings on weekends, and he asked us to try out as a barrier attendant.

“Dad being there and working with us helped, and everyone took us under their wing. We were lucky we got along with everyone very quickly.”

Barrier Attendants
Caitlyn (left) & Alyssa McDougall (right)

Across the seven years they have been helping load and calm thoroughbreds, their mishaps have been few, but notable.

Yet, nothing that would ever stop them from doing the job they love, says Caitlyn, (pictured left) with amusement.

She was left in the wrong stall after a horse reared in the barriers at Kilcoy and knocked her backward. On another occasion one of her fingernails needed to be extracted after a horse firmly flicked its head.

“A horse that was standing perfectly still and not doing anything wrong suddenly went up in the barriers at Kilcoy,’ Caitlyn (pictured, left) said.

“As for the other incident, I’m not sure why I had long fingernails at the time but not anymore.

“As many times as I’ve been hurt, I just love the job.”

Even though they have left high school and started full-time employment, they have not resigned from their race day roles.

Caitlyn, a part-time model for fashion magazines, is studying to be a nurse and Alyssa works with children.

ESK Horse barriers
ESK Horse Barriers


They love the industry and being around horses so much that they don’t consider being a barrier attendant, like being behind the stalls at Esk pictured, a chore.

“Ever since I was young, I wanted to be an equine vet and I have a completely different career working with children, and I love that job,” Alyssa said.

“But working behind the barriers does not feel like a job, it feels like a hobby, and getting paid is a bonus.

“Both Caitlyn and I load them into the gates, and if one needs us to stay a horse in the gates, we will.”

Alyssa’s main mishap sidelined her for three months after a horse, which had been loaded in the gates at Kilcoy, kicked out and fractured her arm.

“We don’t get behind the horses and push them in, but we do shut gates behind them, and one broke my arm kicking back, and I wasn’t ready for it," Alyssa said.

"That was last year, and my arm was in a cast for 12 weeks.”

Despite the pain and setback, nothing was going to stand between her and her hobby, she said.

“I had no hesitation, I went straight back,” she said.

“I am not scared, but I am now wearier about how they are going to react and what to look for.”

 

Clerk of Course
Leisure and Entertainment

Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingSkill Level 1Skill Level 2

Future Growth Very StrongA clerk of the course is an official in various types of racing.
  
In horse racing, recognised by their red jackets, the Clerk of the Course provides assistance to jockeys with getting their horses to and from the barriers.

The Clerk of the Course is mounted on a horse and assists the racehorses and jockeys before and after a race. Their roles may include leading some horses to the barriers prior to a start and also act in emergencies to catch loose horses if they break through the barriers or dislodge their riders at any point.

The Clerk of the Course is the figure in charge of all grounds conditions at a race course. This factors in the racecourse or racetrack that the horses run on, and also includes additional features such as jumps, boundary fences, gates and stables.
 
The Clerk of the Course is an important figure in any race meeting including Motorcycle Racing, Dog and Horse Racing. Their primary responsibility is to ensure the smooth running of the event and to ensure the safety of the competitors. They work closely with the Steward, who has ultimate authority over the meeting, to make sure that everything runs according to the rules and regulations. If you have any concerns or questions regarding the safety or legality of the races, the Clerk of the Course is the person to direct them to. They will be able to provide guidance and refer any unresolved issues to the Steward for further action.
   
In auto racing, the Clerk of the Course is a designated official in charge of managing various aspects of circuit operations, including communication with course marshals, dispatching safety and rescue teams, oversight of track conditions, deploying and withdrawing the safety car and determining whether or not to suspend a race in case of dangerous conditions. Generally, the Clerk of the Course is directly subordinate to the race director or chief steward.


Did You Know?

Remi Gray was named the first female Clerk of the Course at Flemington during the spring carnival in 2018!

First Female Clerk of the Course
(Source: Mail Times)

ANZSCO ID: 452318

Alternative names: Clerk of the Course,

Specialisations: Dog Racing, Auto Racing, Motorcycle Racing, Harness Catcher,
  
Knowledge, skills and attributes
 

Often wearing a red coat and riding a grey horse, the Clerk of the Course ensures nervous racehorses are calm going to the starting gate and helps a jockey if there is an issue between the parade ring and starting gates. The clerk of the course is there to keep everyone on the course safe on race day. They work with Clerk of the Scales, Racecourse Manager and Grounds Team.

  • Clerk of the Course accreditation

  • Extensive knowledge of the horse racing industry

  • Excellent communication skills.

Clerk of the Course
(Source: Just Horse Racing)

Duties and Tasks

In horse racing, the Clerk of the Course is the person responsible for track management and raceday preparation at a racecourse. Their role includes liaising with race participants, including but not limited to trainers, jockeys, drivers, strappers, race day staff, officials as well as the general public.
The Clerk of the Course monitors and assists horses getting to the barriers. The Clerk ride their own horses, and often lead another horse and jockey and generally keep an eye on all of the field. They have a direct two-way radio communication to the Stewards for safety. Our Clerks will also assist during emergency situations and help catch a horse which may have got loose.

During the course of their duties should a Clerk of the Course provide a reasonable request to a licensed person, which is refused or ignored, the stewards should be advised so the matter can be addressed in a formal manner.
Important tasks of the role include:

  • Service customer’s skis and snowboards (prepare them for their time on the mountain)

  • Assessing the course and deciding if it is fit enough to race

  • Maintenance and enhancement of the racing surface

  • Organisation of all Raceday officials, medical and veterinary requirements

  • Management of a team

  • Confirming the official going for the race day

  • Monitoring the going in the run up to the race, and covering or watering the track as necessary to maintain a particular going

  • Preparing and maintaining jumps – both hurdles and fences if required

  • Protecting the turf from overuse

  • Overseeing the maintenance of the course in the lead-up to the race

Clerk of the Course leading horse
(Source: TB Industry)

Working conditions
  

A typical race day for a Clerk of the Course begins early, sometimes before sunrise. They will oversee the racecourse and discuss with the head groundsperson any repairs that need carrying out, or issues to be addressed. The clerk will also meet with the stables manager, to declarations clerk and the steward, and check over paperwork to ensure everything is correct.

Tools and Technologies
  

The Clerk of the Course monitors and assists horses getting to the barriers. The Clerk ride their own horses, and often lead another horse and jockey and generally keep an eye on all of the field. They have a direct two-way radio communication to the Stewards for safety.

Education and training/entrance requirements
   

You can work as a Dog or Horse Racing Official without formal qualifications, however, a certificate III or IV in racing services or racing integrity may be useful.
Certificate II in Racing
Certificate III in Racing (Trackwork Rider).
On the job training

 

Harness Catcher
Leisure and Entertainment
  
Practical or Mechanical
Skill Level 1

In harness racing, horses pull a lightweight, two-wheeled cart called a sulky while maintaining either a trotting or pacing gait. In thoroughbred racing, on the other hand, jockeys ride atop the horses, who gallop at full speed toward the finish line.

Harness Racing
Drivers of Sulkies [Sulky] in Harness Racing
(Source: Horse Racing Sense)

 

Harness Catchers operate as clerks of course but also are skilled and qualified to catch loose harness horses should the driver fall form the sulkie. The sulky’s purpose is to carry the driver, allowing them to guide and control the horse as it races around the track. Its lightweight construction and streamlined design enable the horse to maintain its natural gait, trotting, or pacing while minimizing the impact on its speed and performance.
This is a highly skilled specialised job that requires a suitably trained horse. All Harness Catchers are assessed prior to being allowed to undertake the role.

Harness Racing Accident,Harold Park-03/05/1991 (Sirssamm-D.S.Lang)
Shows the accident and the Harness Catcher - Clerk of the Course
https://youtu.be/TTWYIW1HhoI  

 

 

Clerk of Scales
Leisure and Entertainment

Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingSkill Level 1Skill Level 2

 

Future Growth Very StrongA Clerk of the Scales ensures that each rider in a race is carrying the correct allocated weight. They weigh the jockeys and their riding gear prior to going out to ride and then again when they return. Often jockeys will have to carry lead in their saddle to get their total weight up to the allocated weight by the handicapper. This role requires exceptional attention to detail as a horse that weighs in light will be disqualified from the race.

A Clerk of Scales is prominent at the conclusion of every race when standing with the Chief Steward weighing Rider’s after a race (seen in action by all in the Melbourne Cup televised coverage of riders returning to scale) to ensure that correct weight was carried. Also weigh’s riders out before the race to ensure that all gear is recorded and accounted for at the correct allotted weight thus playing a central role in the operation on race day.
  
The Clerk of Scales ensures all horses have carried their assigned weight by weighing the jockeys before and after their races. They are also responsible for making sure that jockeys are wearing the right silks and horses are wearing the right equipment before heading to the track for their race.

Clerk of Scales
(Source: Liveabout.com)

ANZSCO ID: 452318

Knowledge, skills and attributes
   

The position of Clerk of Scales is one that holds significant importance in assisting the process to ensure that all horses carry the correct handicapped weight in a race. The Clerk of Scales must be a person who is thorough and meticulous with very high standards of accuracy. Importantly the Clerk of Scales must also be a person of unquestionable integrity, with knowledge of industry terminology and an understanding of race meeting procedures.

Additionally the Clerk of Scales must have an extensive knowledge of gear that is approved to be used by jockeys and an understanding of the Rules of Racing relating to the weighing process of riders and the apprentice claims system.

Weigh in
(Source: TB Industry Careers)

Duties and Tasks
  
The Clerk of Scales oversees the pre-race weighing out of each Jockey, ensuring each rider weighs out with the correct equipment and either the exact weight or no more than 0.49kg of the horses advertised allotted weight.

The Clerk of Scales must also ensure that any weight allowance claimed by an Apprentice Jockey is correct and deducted correctly for each of their rides. There may also be permitted circumstances where a Jockey may have permission to ride over the allocated advertised weight that the horse was allotted, this needs to be documented and advertised prior to start time.

After each race the Clerk of Scales is responsible for overseeing each Jockey weighing in with the correct riding gear they weighed out with, and must be at the same weight or within 0.49kg of the weight they weighed out at; and if a jockey weighs back in more than .5kg lighter, then the horse will be disqualified.

Once all jockeys are weighed in after the race, the Clerk of Scales will declare correct weight, and all horse positions are final.

Correct weight may be delayed if any rider is disputing their finishing position by way of requesting the digital photo image or by a protest in the Stewards room.

Working conditions
  

The Clerk of Scales has to work on racing days and in different racing parks. They have to follow strict protocols for weighing in and out. They need to know about the Jockey's gear and record accurately for the Stewards to follow up if there is a dispute.

Here is an example of a template to be filled in by the Clerk of Scales:

Records
(Source: Racing NSW: Clerk of Scales Protocol)

Tools and technologies
  
The gear illustrated below are examples of approved gear for use by Jockeys in races
and must be included in the weighing out process. The items pictured below are
provided as examples of different types of gear and are not the only brands of gear
approved. Clerk of Scales should familiarise themselves with this apparel.

Vests Boots

Colours Saddles

Lead bags

Stirrups

Girth covers

other gear
(Source: Racing NSW: Clerk of Scales Protocol)

 

Education and training/entrance requirements
  
Certificate II in Racing
Racing and industry experience required
On the job training

 

Photo Finish Operator
Leisure and Entertainment

Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingAnalytic or ScientificSkill Level 1Skill Level 2

 

A photo finish occurs in a sporting race when multiple competitors cross the finishing line at nearly the same time. As the naked eye may not be able to determine which of the competitors crossed the line first, a photo or video taken at the finish line may be used for a more accurate check. Photo finishes make it less likely that officials will declare a race a dead heat. Future Growth Very Strong

Finish line photos are still used in nearly every modern racing sport. Although some sports use electronic equipment to track the racers during a race, a photo is considered the most important evidence in selecting the winner. They are especially important during close races, but they are also used to assign official times to each competitor during any race.

Reporting to the Stewards on race days, the Judge and Photo Finish Operator is responsible for operation and maintenance of the finish/timing system at race meetings, to determine the correct finishing order for each race.
The finish of a race is captured by photo finish equipment, a person is required to operate this and then pass the photo onto the official Judge. The Judge then determines the placings and margins of the race which in turn permits the results to be published. The need for accuracy and integrity is high, coming up with the correct outcome is vitally important due to the wagering and the amount of prizemoney involved.

ANZSCO ID: 452318

Alternative names: PFO,

Specialisations: Harness racing, Greyhound racing, Thoroughbred racing, World Athletics, Motor racing, Cycling, Triathlon,


Knowledge, skills and attributes

  • Experience in working as a judge /photo finish operator

  • Strong interest in all racing

  • Strong work ethic

  • The ability to work under pressure, achieve deadlines and ensure accuracy of all work performed

  • A high degree of personal integrity

  • Strong attention to detail, time management and ability to meet deadlines

  • Ability to work independently and/or as part of a team

  • A valid Australian Drivers Licence, and ownership of a reliable vehicle

 

Photo Finish Operator
(Source: Career Advice & Training Service UK)

 

Duties and Tasks

  • Prepare for race day

  • Verify race fields and distances with race organiser 

  • Confirm box or barrier position, racing colours and greyhound or horse identification features 

  • Verify operation of equipment used to monitor race results prior to commencement of race meeting 

  • Prepare contingency plans for possible malfunction of race result equipment 

  • Comply with rules of racing for the declaration of places in a race 

  • Operate race result equipment  

  • Operate race result equipment in a safe and efficient manner to comply with work health and safety and equipment operating procedures 

  • Ensure photo finish image recorder is set correctly 

  • View race results and enhance image when required 

  • Print image of race result and dispatch to race judge 

  • Report outcomes of the race  

  • Identify greyhounds or horses placed at finish 

  • Record race results according to procedures

 

 

Did You Know?

In 2011 with new digital technology recording vision at 10,000 frames per second, Dunaden was declared a winner over Red Cadeaux in the Melbourne Cup.

PHOTO FINISH IN THE MELBOURNE CUP | DUNADEN AND RED CADEAUX RACE ANALYSIS
https://youtu.be/WS7QYOtEVoE




Working conditions
  

Given the unique nature of this position and the operational requirements of the racing industry, the position is expected to travel within between Head Office, country and regional clubs to attend day/night harness meetings, greyhound meetings and thoroughbred meetings. They must be able to work flexible hours, including evenings and weekends.


Tools and technologies
   

A Photo Finish Operator uses specialised race result equipment, including cameras, computers and other technology to officially record the finish of a race. They are accountable for the entry of data into various systems to accurately reflect race results.

Photo Finish
Judge misreads print: in two horse race!
Take for example this finish in a two-horse race at Mansfield picnics in December of 2013. Judge Sean Quin declared $1.25 favourite Vixenite (red cap) the winner, but it wasn't until the photo finish operator checked the official image that it became clear who the rightful victor should have been. The reversal of the placings came too late for those who'd backed The Blue Angel ($3), with bookmakers already having paid-out on the result.

Dog racing
The hand of the dog
In this race at Romford in East London, there was not a betting slip between Droopys Djokovic, Ayamzagirl and Killishan Masai as the three dogs staggered over the line in a titanic 925m battle. Though the 5-dog's paw clearly crossed the line first, the rules dictate that the winner can only be calculated from when the nose crosses the finishing line, so resulting in an official triple dead heat.

(Source: Punters: Freakish Photo Finishes)
 

Education and training/entrance requirements
  
A Photo Finish Operator is provided with on and off the job training.

 

Race Caller
Leisure and Entertainment

Practical or MechanicalNature or RecreationSkill Level 1Skill Level 2Skill Level 3

Skill Level 4Skill Level 5

A Race Caller is responsible for the "calling" of races and trials. Race Callers are employed by the relevant Principal Racing Authority (PRA), radio or television stations. A race caller’s role is to commentate each race on race day. They provide commentary prior, during and post-race, as well as make other on course announcements throughout the day. Future Growth Very Strong
  
The job of a race caller is to accurately describe the running of races so the audience knows what is going on and where horses are located throughout the running of the race. They also spend the day announcing results and other on-course or on-air news between races.
  
The role of a modern Race Caller extends beyond calling a race. They will have media training and a strong understanding or form, jockeys and trainers. They will be required to give their previews for the meeting on radio or television prior to the race meetings being run.

Interviewing Michelle Payne
Race Caller interviewing Michelle Payne, the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup
(Source: Racing Victoria)

A race caller provides live commentary before, during and after a race to on course patrons, radio listeners and to a worldwide television audience. Excellent communication skills, including clear diction are fundamentals of a good race caller.

At any given race meeting, race callers need to recall up to 150 horse names, and recognise their respective jockey’s silks instantly during a race. A deep understanding of all areas of the sport further enhances their commentary, as does the appropriate use of statistics and anecdotes. A sharp memory is imperative.

ANZSCO ID: 452318

Alternative names: Track Announcer,

Specialisations: Different types of motor sports, sports, horse racing, harness racing

Knowledge, skills and attributes
   

In order to be a Race Caller you will need to have a clear voice and very good eyesight. A Race Caller [horse racing] needs to remember the names and colours of up to 24 runners in a race in Australia so they generally have a strong natural aptitude for the role.

Race Caller
(Source: TB Industry Careers)

Duties and Tasks
  
The track announcer is one of the most well recognized racetrack employees though many people never see him/her. He/she calls the races, vividly describing the action to the public. The best track announcers have a unique voice, a great memory and good eyesight. He/she plays an important role in enhancing the racing experience for fans and horsemen. The announcer’s duties include:


  • Observing each race and conveying accurate information about it to the general public

  • Informing the betting public of program changes or additional information not in the racing program, under direction from the judges

  • Informing the public of upcoming events and other on-track promotions - promoting and stimulating wagering on upcoming race meetings by analysing the form and providing opinion based previews, either written or on air.

  • Being on the front line, race callers are often the first to report breaking news from the track.


Working conditions

While the highlight of your job is calling races – you typically call up to 10 races a day – you spend a large portion of your time preparing for them, instead. In the case of a horse race, for instance, you’ve got to memorize the horses’ and Jockeys’ names, silks, and colors so that you can easily identify them on the track.

Tools and technologies

Binoculars, stand for binoculars, microphone and head piece,

You are either linked to the PA system on the track or over the airwaves on radio or TV.

Education and training/entrance requirements

No specific training is required for this type of position, however, training in public speaking and experience in broadcast is preferred.

Understanding of the industry and form
Certificate II in Racing
No specific training but industry experience and broadcasting favourable

 

Adam Olszanski - Race Caller - LOTJ - CAMEO

Adam Olszanski
(Source: Racing.com)

For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be race caller. Following my father to the races every Saturday as a young kid, I quickly got the ‘racing bug’.

In my early teens, I bought a good pair of binoculars, a stand and swivel to place them on, and would go to the races to ‘practise’. I would position myself in a quiet part of the grandstand and call the action into an old tape recorder, eventually progressing to a vacant broadcast box to refine my skills.

After a couple years of doing this every Saturday, I got my first opportunity to call a race - at the Alexandra picnics. From there, the ball started rolling and for six years I worked the P.A. at as many picnic, non-tab and trials meetings as I could – even travelling to South Australia and Tasmania when opportunities arose.

Along the way, I periodically sent demo tapes to the Program Director at Sport927 (now RSN) and this landed me my first telecast TAB meeting at Ouyen harness in early 2005. Shortly after, I took up the post as race caller in Alice Springs, gaining valuable weekly on-air radio exposure on the 4TAB network. Six months later, I was offered a full-time position at the newly formed TVN, where I worked as a race caller and on air presenter for 8 years. In September 2013, I transferred to Racing Victoria, who now manage all full-time thoroughbred callers in the state.
(Source: Racing Victoria)


Why Adam calls a tent his home
By Geoff McClure
November 7, 2005 - The Age


The sporting files are littered with stories about people who go to extraordinary lengths to achieve their dream and one in the process of adding his name to it is 22-year-old Adam Olszanski. Ever since his early teenage days when he used to accompany his father, a keen punter, to the races, Olszanski has wanted only one thing when he grew up and that was to follow in the footsteps of Greg Miles and Bryan Martin and be a racecaller.

Well, if determination counts for anything, the former St Michael's Grammar (St Kilda) student would appear to be well on his way, having just won the job of calling the action at the once-a-fortnight meetings at Alice Springs' Pioneer Park course.

But this is no ordinary appointment because Olszanski pays his own air fares to and from Alice Springs for every meeting — his moderate salary means he is actually out of pocket (about $50 to $100) every trip. So to keep those costs at a minimum, instead of staying at a hotel, he puts up his tent in the local camping ground and sleeps there.

"It's fantastic experience for me — that's why I jumped at the chance when offered the job, even though it costs me money and the accommodation isn't all that flash," Olszanski told us yesterday while back home in Melbourne for the spring carnival.

"The more I get to call races, hopefully the better I will become and maybe get a bit more noticed, too."

Olszanski was only 14 when he bought his first pair of binoculars (and a stand to hold them) and headed off to most of Melbourne's major courses on race day and practised his calling from the stands. One day, former Melbourne caller Ray Benson saw what he was doing and invited him to use a spare broadcasting booth alongside him.

Since then, his burgeoning career has taken in calling picnic meetings at Woolamai and Balnarring and several non-TAB meetings at Wodonga and Burrumbeet. He also works on the trials circuit and not that long ago called a harness race meeting at Ouyen for Sport 927 when the radio station's regular caller fell ill, Olszanski having to dash to the airport just in time to catch a plane.

But it's Alice Springs that he sees as his first big break in the industry, even though he barely earns enough money to make ends meet. So who looks after his Top End "home" when he's not there?

"The racing club is pretty good to me and they let me store it under the grandstand," said Olszanski. "The first thing I do when I get up there is go and grab it and then take it to the nearby camping ground and set it up. I don't mind, really. Hopefully, it will all pay off in the end."


Warrnambool preview - Adam Olsanski & Terry Bailey [2011]
https://youtu.be/D8P3-RLPtp8


Stony Creek appoints new Club CEO
29 July, 2021


Adam Olszanski


MEDIA RELEASE

Bass Coast local Adam Olszanski has been appointed the new CEO of the Stony Creek Racing Club. Club President Michael Darmanin said that the new appointment follows on from the recent resignation of former Club CEO Sarah Wolf, after her pending relocation back to Melbourne.

“After many solid applications and an extensive recruitment process, the Club is pleased to be able to announce Adam as our new Club CEO. Adam has a rich experience within the racing industry, having called races for over 20 years, presented on racing TV networks, which Adam will be continuing these roles as well as more recently being the Secretary at the Woolamai Picnic Races. Adam brings with him some big plans and innovative ideas for the club and we look forward to working with him to strengthen the club’s membership, develop our schedule of race day entertainment and ensure that our community continues to enjoy a great day of quality racing at Stony."

Commencing in August [2021], Adam will be well placed to begin planning for the next season of racing at Stony Creek with the first race of the summer season set to be in late December. Adam said he was excited at continuing the great work already underway at Stony Creek. “I’m looking forward to meeting with members and regular race goers and continuing to build on the work being undertaking by the club in making race days something for everyone to enjoy. As a race caller I have enjoyed coming to Stony Creek for many years, so it is exciting to be able to spend more time at the Club, helping drive future plans and welcoming even more people to the races over summer."

 

Raceday Swab Official
Leisure and Entertainment

Practical or MechanicalClerical or OrganisingAnalytic or ScientificSkill Level 3Skill Level 4

 

Greyhound, harness and thoroughbred racing are strictly regulated throughout Australia. The primary responsibility of a swab official is the collection of urine, blood, excreta, saliva and/or hair samples from thoroughbred horses and greyhounds at race meetings for subsequent drug testing.

Other personnel who can take swabs or urine samples are Stewards, Veterinarians, Inspectors & Investigators. If a urine sample cannot be collected, a blood sample may be taken.

For greyhounds, there is mandatory swabbing for:

  • All winners of category A1& A2 race meetings

  • All semi-final winners of Group 3 or higher events

  • All greyhounds engaged to compete in finals in Group 1 & Group 2 events

  • First, second and third place getters in all group finals

  • Any greyhound that breaks or equals a track record

  • Where a trainer has three or more winners at a single meeting, at least one greyhound trained by that trainer within those three races and every subsequent winner thereafter.

  • In relation to Category B and C TAB meetings: 

    • Winners of all events with total prize money pool of $5,000 or more

    • First, second and third place getters in all events with total prize money pool of
      $10,000 or more. 

  • In relation to non-TAB meetings: 

    • Winners of all events with total prize money pool of $2,000 or more.

 

Bloods tested
(Source: Canine Campus)

 

ANZSCO ID: 452318

Specialisations: Thoroughbred Horses, Harness Racing Horses, Greyhounds. The same protocol will happen in athletics.


Knowledge, skills and attributes

  • High standard of integrity

  • Diligence

  • Professionalism

  • Ability to communicate effectively with people

  • Ability to handle, and be in close proximity with, horses and greyhounds,

  • Ability to work well under pressure

  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team

  • Valid driver’s licence

 

Doping Control

 

Doping Control

The primary objective of doping control is to ensure that, as far as possible, horses do not race with pharmacological active drugs in their system thus complying with the principle of ‘drug free’ racing. The aim is to ensure that racing performances are result of the inherent ability of the horse, the skill of the rider and the trainer and the natural condition of the horse on the day of racing.

Doping may be defined as the administration of drugs (or use of other methods) to manipulate the racing performance of a horse. Doping may attempt to:

* Improve the athletic performance of horse by stimulating the nervous or musculoskeletal system

* Depress the performance of a horse to get it beaten in a race or enhance a horse’s physiological response to training (anabolic steroids, blood building drugs and others)

* Mask the signs of pain and inflammation or the symptoms of disease so that a sore or unwell horse can get to the races and perform better than it would without the benefit of medication.

(Source: Racing Victoria)

 

Duties and Tasks

The critical requirements of the sample collection process are to ensure that the trainer’s representative is provided with the opportunity to witness the entire process, that an uncontaminated sample is collected from the designated horse, that the identity of the sample can be securely linked to the horse from which it was collected, that the identity of the sample is coded and unknown to the analytical laboratory and that the sample cannot be tampered with after collection and prior to delivery to the laboratory without evidence of any attempt to interfere with the sample.

A meticulous record of the chain of custody of the sample must be maintained.
  

Select greyhounds or horses to be sampled for prohibited substance testing in line with racing authority’s swab sampling strategythe collection of urine or blood samples from thoroughbred & harness racing horses as well as greyhounds, at race meetings for subsequent drug testing.

On race day samples may be collected at any time prior to the race or after the race until the horse or greyhound is released by the stewards. Samples are generally collected from winners, beaten favourites or any other horse or greyhound which may be of interest to the stewards.


Working conditions

The Race-Day Swab Official is a casual position that requires, on average, 2 days service a week. Such commitments being on irregular days, including weekends and public holidays, at varying racecourses. The Race-Day Swab Official will require flexible personal commitments to accommodate the role.

As this is an integrity-based role, the Race-Day Swab Official is required to disclose any conflict of interest, perceived or otherwise, with industry participants. All Race-Day Swab Officials have to undergo a probity check.

 

Education and training/entrance requirements

 

Starter
Leisure and Entertainment

Clerical or OrganisingNature or RecreationSkill Level 1Skill Level 2

Starters are used in many competitive races including rowing, motor racing, swimming, athletics, greyhound and horse racing. The primary goal of any competent starter must be to ensure all competitors receive a fair and equal start for each race - for horses, greyhounds, athletics and motor sports.

A Starter is the person who releases a field of horses from the barriers to begin a horse race while a Starter in a rowing race may start the race without reference to absentees. A rowing crew arriving late at its starting position may be awarded a Yellow Card by the Starter. Each code has different and similar policies in order to try and guarantee fairness to each participant in the race.

Olympic Race Starter
Olympic Race Starter
(Source: England Athletics)

For Horse races: The Barrier Attendants and Jockeys communicate with the Starter to ensure each horse is in a ready position to race. The Starter has a view over the field on a rostrum and releases the barriers when they believe all horses will be allowed a fair start. If a horse isn't given a fair start they may be declared a non-runner by Stewards to protect those wagering on the race.

The Starter's goal is to ensures that races are run efficiently, on time and safely.

According to the distance of each race the starting stalls or the barriers will be shifted into position. The Starter will oversee the horses arriving for the start of each race and with the help of the Barrier Attendants, ensures the overall safety of the horse and riders.

The Starter will communicate with the Race Day Stewards and Commentators to broadcast any delays or last minute equipment or Veterinary checks needed.

The Starter calls the horses and jockeys into their correct starting gate numbers with minutes to go before the advertised/official start time, so that the horses are all loaded in a fair and orderly manner.

ANZSCO ID: 452318

Specialisations: Depends on the race that needs starting

Knowledge, skills and attributes

The atmosphere at the start of a race can be one of ease and calm or one of confusion, based on the approach and the actions of the starter at the start line. A competent starter is able to take command and remain calm throughout the starting process. This begins with the ability to give clear, precise instructions and the ability to give the starting commands in a strong but calm voice. This in turn will help relax the competitors and make them feel confident in the starter. If the competitors feel confident that the starter will provide a clean, fair start for everyone, without any quirks or distractions, that is one less thing they have to worry about, which allows them to focus more attention on their race. A good self-evaluation check for the starter (and any other official) is that if you leave the competition unnoticed, your job has been well-done. The attention should always be on the competitors. Officials are there only for the purpose of ensuring the competition is conducted according to the rules, not to “grandstand” or draw attention away from the competitors.

Motor sports starter
Motor Sports Starter with various flags
(Source: Wikipedia)

Other characteristics of a good starter that often are mentioned include being physically fit, mentally alert, having good eyesight and reactions, the ability to concentrate and maintain complete focus, an enjoyment of working with horses, greyhounds and people, and a love of the sport. Common sense and tact also are required.

Because the starter is in complete control of the start of a race, and the starter’s decisions cannot be appealed, s/he must have a complete and thorough knowledge of the rules regarding the starting of races, and an understanding of competition requirements and the needs of the competitor. Since things can happen so quickly at the start line, the starter must be decisive, but not brusque. A good starter must have a great deal of patience, and must be able to project an air of calmness at the start line. It is not enough to be calm yourself; you must be able to project that sense of calmness to the athletes. On occasion a good sense of humour also is necessary. A competent starter should be relaxed and never try to overwhelm the competitors with his or her presence.

2022 World Rowing Championships - The Grand Finale
https://youtu.be/R-hoeAycycc

 

A competent starter also practices preventive officiating. If a starter sees a situation developing that could result in a problem, s/he should do something to correct the situation immediately, before it does become a problem. As should be the case with any other official, the competent starter always gives the competitors the benefit of the doubt. And no matter what the level of competition, whether a youth meet or a national championship, the starter should be able to project the feeling that these competitors are important and that this is the most important race ever started.

Duties and Tasks

Starters are used in many competitive races including rowing, motor racing, athletics, greyhound and horse racing. The primary goal of any competent starter must be to ensure all competitors receive a fair and equal start for each race - for horses, greyhounds, athletics, swimming and motor sports.

 

Swimming Starter's position
(Source: NSW Swimming)

 

Starters can use many methods to start a race. It can be manual: pistol, electronic horn, whistle, flag, or light. With harness racing, there is a motorise starting gate with the driver in contact with the Starter.

Harness Racing from the Starting Car
https://youtu.be/aJYc5TYHrMw

 

Flags

Education and training/entrance requirements

Certificate II in Racing
Certificate III in Racing
On the job training
Racing and industry experience required.

 

 

Related Jobs or Working with these Jobs
(Jobs not linked are currently being worked on)

Bookmaker
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Farrier

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Gardener

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Greenkeeper

Greenkeeper
Horse Trainer

Horse Trainer
Jockey

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Exercise or Track Rider
Journalist

Journalist

Sports Commentator
Landscape Architect

Landscape Architect
Medical Laboratory Technician

Medical Laboratory Technician
Paramedic

Paramedic
Photographer

Photographer
Racecourse Track  Manager

Racecourse Track Manager
Statistician

Statistician

Statistics Researcher - Racing or Horse Racing Data Analyst
Steward of Racing

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Tourist Information Officer

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Material sourced from
Racing SA [Administration Careers; ];
Racing Jobs [Barrier Attendant; Casual Horse Float Drive & Barrier Attendant; Racing Operations; Race-day Swab Official; Other Raceday Services; Race Caller; Photo Finish Operator;  ]
Racing & Wagering WA [Race Day Careers; ]
Racing NSW [Barrier Management Policy (PDF); Clerk of Scales Protocol (PDF); ]
Thoroughbred Industry Careers [A-Z Careers;]
Training.gov.au [Thoroughbred Barrier Attendant Skill Set; ]
Motorcycling Australia [Types of Officials; ]
Wikipedia [Clerk of the Course; Photo finish; ]
Paddy Power [Clerk of the Course Horse Racing; ]
Harness Racing NSW [Operating Guidelines; Starting & Race Track Officials Policy;  ]
Racing Victoria [Photo Finish Operator; Raceday responsibilities; ]
Australian Harness Racing [Race Meeting Officer (PDF); ]
Skills Impact [Photo Finish Operator; ]
A Guide to Careers in Horse Racing [Track Announcer; ]
Career Match [Race Caller; ]
BC Athletics [Starters; ]
Greyhound Welfare & Integrity Commission [Swabbing Policy; ]
Your Career [Racecourse Barrier Attendant; ]

 

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