The Racecourse Manager Certification Program, a continuing education initiative launched in June with an online curriculum focused on educating the next generation of racing surface managers, is now accepting applications for its first in-person course to be held Sept. 13-15 at Keeneland Race Course. Grader School, focusing on combined theory and practice sessions on the grading of racing surfaces, will offer a select number of early career professionals the opportunity to develop highly focused, hands-on expertise that will allow them to adapt and excel to the changing demands of horse racing surfaces.
Grader School will consist of online lectures and examinations in preparation for a two-day intensive workshop at Keeneland. Taught by superintendents of two of the leading racecourses in the United States, Alfredo Laureano and Dennis Moore, the class will include the operation of both a state-of-the-art and an older model grader.
“The most common surfaces used for Thoroughbred racing are dirt and synthetic surfaces. One of the highest priorities and the most difficult part of maintaining a racecourse is the accurate grading of dirt and synthetic racing surfaces,” said Michael “Mick” Peterson, Ph.D., Director of the Racetrack Safety Program at the University of Kentucky and Executive Director of the Racing Surfaces and Testing Laboratory (RSTL).