Following the final fixture of the 2017 UK season, the Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) offers their warmest congratulations to ARO Judge, Michael Roberts, on taking up his appointment as a Judge for the British Horseracing Authority. Roberts started his career with ARO three seasons ago, initially in a support capacity, however his long-term aim was always to be a judge.
The primary function of the role is to place the horses as they cross the line, with the support of photo-finish technology where necessary. His role also includes monitoring the sponsorship scheme for owners. He began training for the position at the end of May and undertook his first appointment at Uttoxeter on 28th July. Working primarily in the North West, he has already been as far afield as Chepstow and Market Rasen, and he welcomes the level of variety that the role provides.
Of his time with ARO and his recent appointment, Roberts said: “I’ve aspired to work in racing for a long time and saw ARO as an opportunity to get to know one of the lesser known areas of the sport. I have made some good friends and hope that I’ll be able to continue judging for ARO alongside my BHA commitments.”
He continued: “The experience I’ve gained with ARO has been critical in terms of being offered the BHA position, from having experience I could use in the initial application, to being able to discuss my understanding of the role at interview. There are only about 10 BHA judges in the country, meaning competition for any vacancies is likely to be strong, so having practical experience that makes you stand out is key. I’d encourage anyone who wants to work in racing to join the team at ARO, everyone there has been fantastic, but Genny and Peter Haynes, Gary Capewell and Tricia Newman have been hugely supportive and really helped me to find my feet in the early days.
ARO Director Genny Haynes commented: “Obviously we are delighted for Michael on his new appointment as a BHA Judge. This is yet another example of how Arabian Racing can benefit the wider racing industry by giving opportunities for education and career progression in all areas, not just riding and training horses. ARO wishes Michael every success.”