Idaho, Indiana Host Youth Racing Experiences

Racing affiliates help large groups of youth learn more about racing.

Q-Racing Journal
July 10, 2013

idaho youth racing experience

Legendary jockeys Jerry Nicodemus and Kip Didericksen talk to Idaho Youth Racing Experience attendees.

Racing affiliates in Idaho and Indiana this weekend hosted successful Youth Racing Experiences, exposing enthusiastic youth to the business of horse racing.

There were 27 Idaho youth attending the youth racing experience at Les Bois Park on Saturday, with Taff Heim and Karen Palmer heading up organizing the event. The Boise, Idaho, racetrack that day also hosted five Bank of America Racing Challenge events.

The youth began their day at the races at 5:45 a.m., being introduced to racing trainers who showed them around the barns. Mid-morning, the youth began touring various jobs around the racetrack, including racing officials such as the racing secretary, stewards, starting gate crew, farrier and track announcer. The youth got the opportunity to hear from American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame member Jerry Nicodemus and legendary jockey Kip Didericksen. The day closed out with an evening at the races.

“I think it went really well,” said Clayton Russell, the president of the Idaho Quarter Horse Racing Association. “All the kids learned a lot and had a really good experience.”

At the end of the day, Austin Brewer, 17, of Nampa, earned a trip to attend the AQHYA Youth Racing Experience to be held at the Bank of America Challenge Championships at Los Alamitos in November.

The Quarter Horse Racing Association of Indiana hosted a successful youth racing experience at Indiana Downs in Shelbyville.

The 15 attendees were chosen from 42 applications to attend, and those were treated to a 16 hour day of information. During that time, they worked with trainers and attended lectures and were provided job opportunity information.

Three of the youth were awarded scholarships.

Winner Kacee Kugler received a $2,000 scholarship and a trip to the national Youth Racing Experience.

Kate Gollner was second, and received a $2,000 scholarship. Cheyanna Patrick finished third and was awarded a $1,000 scholarship.