Diversity role model Ashleigh Wicheard among Racing Media Academy's class of 2023

Ashleigh Wicheard, the Magnolia Cup winning jockey at Neil Mulholland's Wiltshire yard 4.8.22Pic: Edward Whitaker
Ashleigh Wicheard: among those in this year's Racing Media AcademyCredit: Edward Whitaker

The Racing Media Academy, an initiative designed to make coverage of the sport more diverse, will launch again this year with Magnolia Cup winner Ashleigh Wicheard among the 13 cadets set to form the class of 2023.

Wicheard led the jockeys in taking the knee as a stand against racism before last year's race at Glorious Goodwood and is set for a placement at Racing TV in a step towards her ambition of becoming a racing presenter.

The academy, created by Josh Apiafi and funded by the Racing Foundation, is in its second year and is aimed at promoting inclusivity within the racing media. There were over 100 applicants for the academy from a diverse group of individuals in terms of background, age, ethnicity, religion, sexuality and disability.

The 13 cadets spend a week learning about all aspects of the sport at the British Racing School, before having work experience media placements at the likes of ITV, Sky Sports Racing, The Jockey Club, Racing TV and the Racing Post. Five new placements have been added this year.

Apiafi said: “To see the Racing Media Academy grow again is fantastic, eight of the ten cadets from last year have been offered full-time roles in the sport. That’s proof of concept, if you open your doors to EDI [Equality, diversity and inclusion] you’ll be amazed who walks through it. For the sport to grow and be attractive to a broad demographic it has to be reflective of society. The organisations and individuals behind the RMA should be rightfully proud they're doing just that.”

The induction week starts in April and finishes with a trip to Sandown's jump season finale and a filming of Luck on Sunday at the Racing TV studios.

Racing Media Academy: class of 2023 

Angie Lui (Great British Racing)
Ashleigh Wicheard (Racing TV)
David Griffiths (Racing Post)
Isabel Charnock (Jockey Club)
Jack Ready (Arena Racing Company)
Joanna Grabowska (Equine Productions)
Jon-Ho-Wong (RaceTech)
Joseph Bell (JSC Communications)
Michael Grimes (ITV Racing)
Samantha Cunningham (Nick Luck Daily Podcast)
Thea Lorem (Jockey Cam)
Tom Humphries (Sky Sports Racing)
William Aston (Sky Sports Racing)

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West Country correspondent

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