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May 02, 2013

HRI 'Go Racing Kids' Club' at The Curragh Racecourse

go-racing-kids-club Over 300 Local School Pupils were joined by Trainers Shane Duffy and James Leavy & Jockeys Jamie Codd and Mark Enright

Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) held a ‘Go Racing Kids’ Club’ Day at The Curragh Racecourse this morning (30th April), to promote interest and awareness in horse racing, among primary school children in the Kildare area.

Over 300 5th and 6th class pupils from local schools took part in demonstrations from RACE (Racing Academy & Centre of Education) and farrier, Donal Bennett. They heard talks from jockeys Jamie Codd and Mark Enright and Valet Paul Fox and local trainers James Leavy and Shane Duffy. The pupils also met Racecourse Manager, Paul Hensey who explained how the team at The Curragh Racecourse prepares for a race day. The children had a chance to try out the RACE horse simulator, to assist the farrier with his work and they even took part in a running race right on the famous Curragh racetrack.

HRI Marketing Executive, Lorraine Page, said: “The objective of the ‘Go Racing Kids’ Club’ initiative is to build ties between the racecourses and their local community, encouraging an affinity with racing which will hopefully produce future racegoers. The activities educate school children about racing and show them what happens behind the scenes at the racecourse.”

All of the children received a ‘Go Racing Kids’ Club’ goodie bag at the end of the day and were invited to enter an essay competition based on their experience at the racecourse. The top ten finalists and their parents will be invited to the Newbridge Community Race Day at The Curragh on Bank Holiday Monday, 6th May, where the winner will be presented with a laptop, sponsored by Newbridge Credit Union. There will also be prizes for the nine runners-up.

Evan Arkwright, Commercial Manager, The Curragh Racecourse, commented: “We were delighted to welcome so many children from local schools to the racecourse which gave us the opportunity to not only give children a behind-the-scenes view of what takes place on a race day and the importance of the sport to Kildare, but also promote our Newbridge Community Race Day. The pupils really enjoyed the day and it was good to make them more aware of an important industry that is literally right on their doorstep.”