For the first time in the 27 year history of the Jamaica Racing Commission's Trainers' Programme, an entire cohort has finished the course with passing grades. The twenty-two assistant trainers who began their formal training in March, were presented with their Diplomas at Tuesday evening's graduation ceremony at the headquarters of the Jamaica Racing Commission (JRC).
The components of the course included the anatomy, physiology, conformation, energy mechanism, blood flow, muscle development and nutrition of horses as well as animal health, saddling gear and equipment for horses. The course which ran from March through to December, was conducted by the Jamaica Racing Commission's veterinary and stewards departments.
The course required candidates to attain 70 % or over for the exam in part 1 in order to progress to part 2. Three of the graduates, Carlos Leung, Ian Roberts and Shaun Williams, received honours for achieving scores over 90 %.
Williams who was the Valedictorian, also copped the Chairman's Award for the best overall performance as well as the Dr St Aubyn Bartlett award for the best practical performance. He has been an assistant trainer for 22 years, and has worked with six different trainers.
The other sectional accoldade went to Carlos Leung who took home the Dr Sophia Ramlal award for producing the best theoretical performance. The group includes two females, Keisha Lawrence and Kibbiesha Little.
When the 22 graduates receive their trainers' licence from the JRC, it will bring the number of practicing trainers at Caymanas Park to 164.