Thursday, 06 September 2018 12:12

Brady Betlamini - Buck Lake to Breeches

Written by Julie Brewster
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Brady at Edmonton International Airport departing for Ireland Brady at Edmonton International Airport departing for Ireland

Brady Betlamini has embarked on an incredible Irish adventure through the Olds College Racetrack Program and International Federation of Horse Racing Academies. Brady has been awarded a scholarship to complete a four-week mentorship program at Racing Academy and Centre of Excellence in Ireland.

Brady grew up in Buck Lake Alberta in a ranching and rodeoing family, and was first introduced to racing while rodeoing in Australia. He and some friends went to Melbourne for a race day and he caught a bit of racing fever. When he returned to Canada he made some inquiries and spent a day at Century Downs last fall and immediately applied for the Exercise Rider program. “The Olds College program was amazing for someone like me, because I didn’t have any racing experience. They teach the fundamentals of the sport and the program gives a great foundation. The step by step, hands on instruction with the horses gave me some groom skills as well as exercise riding skills. I think the program is a great stepping stone to build from and an introduction to the racing industry.”

Brady graduated as Valedictorian from the Exercise Rider Program in June, and spent most of the summer at Northlands Park. He flew to Dublin this week and has jumped right in to his mentorship in Ireland. “It’s pretty amazing for even think that I’m getting this opportunity. I’m going from Buck Lake to breeches, and I’m thrilled to be representing Canada in Ireland.”

One of the benefits of the racing industry is the opportunity to work anywhere in the world. The IFHRA mentorship program was developed by the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival to provide opportunities for students from 35 racing schools around the world “to nurture and give a positive direction to aspiring flat racing jockeys and Horse Racing Professionals.” While at RACE, Brady will be getting work experience for leading Irish trainer John Oxx. Mr. Oxx has trained 35 Group 1 winners, including 2009 Horse of the Year Sea the Stars. Brady will have some race simulator and gallop training at RACE, the opportunity to attend a number of racecourses including the Curragh and Leopardstown for Irish Champions Day, and learn more about the racing and breeding industry at the Irish National Stud, Kildangan Stud, Coolmore Stud, Redmills Equine Feeds and there are even a few extracurricular tourist days planned to learn more about the culture and see some of the country.

“Thank you doesn’t say enough for this opportunity. For the instructors at Olds College to make the recommendation and the members of IFHRA to accept my application is incredible. I’m only dipped my toe into racing in Alberta and I’m thrilled to get to learn in Ireland. I’m looking forward to learning as much as I can about the gallops and different training and riding methods. This is an unbelievable opportunity to get an Irish racing education.”

Theresa Sealy, head instructor and program coordinator for Olds College Racetrack Programs says “The Olds College/Horse Racing Alberta Race Track programs are proud and excited to send exercise rider and jockey graduate Brady Betlamini to Racing Academy and Center of Education (R.A.C.E.) Ireland for his next step in his horse racing career!  Brady was one of 10 recipients to receive a scholarship, and we are ever so grateful to the International Federation of Horse Racing Academies (IFHRA), Chairwoman Lara Sawaya, and the HH Sheikh Mansoor Global Horse Racing Festival for this opportunity for Brady! Brady will be gaining knowledge and experience in horsemanship and riding to come back to Canada with a new and professional skill set.”

Congratulations, Brady! We look forward to following his journey from #BuckLaketoBreeches!

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