It's courses for horses

6th October 2000 at 01:00
THE sport of kings has captured the imagination of students at two schools near Doncaster.

Teenagers from Rossington high and Kingwood high can now complete national vocational qualifications in race horse care at the Northern Racing College.

But it's not all Ascot and Jilly Cooper.

Indeed, the thought of the students getting up to muck out stables is likely to bring a smile to the face of most teachers.

In the past, trainers would employ youngsters who had worked on the land and were used to animals, as ong as they were light enough to sit on a flighty two-year-old thoroughbred.

But now, half of the students enrolling at the college have never sat on a horse.

College director Jim Gale said: "The culture has completely changed. Now it's kids from conurbations who are leading out the horses at famous race meetings."

And, as in so many other areas, men have been unsaddled from their position of supremacy: for the first time last year, the number of girls aged 16 to 19 in the industry outstripped boys.

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