HWPA and Racing Media Academy link up to improve opportunities and diversity within the sport

Josh Apiafi: delighted by the Racing Media Academy's new partnership with the Invictus Foundation
Josh Apiafi: founder of the Racing Media AcademyCredit: Dan Abraham

The Racing Media Academy (RMA) received a boost before the launch of its third year on Sunday, with the Horserace Writers and Photographers Association (HWPA) announcing its support for the initiative. 

The HWPA will give cadets a free membership, and offer half-price to any new members under the age of 25, which provides them with the support of the association through the next steps of their career, as well as a chance to submit an entry in the Derby Awards each December.

Starting on Sunday, cadets begin a learning week at Newmarket before taking part in a six- to eight-week placement at some of the biggest companies in the racing media. 

The academy was founded by Sky Sports Racing presenter Josh Apiafi with the ambition to increase diversity within the sport and create opportunities for those from a variety of backgrounds. It is funded by the Racing Foundation, Godolphin and Spotlight Sports Group, publishers of the Racing Post.

The link-up will also mean cadets form part of the Derby Awards programme, with video highlights forming part of the presentation, and the work of the cadets to form part of Racing Media Week, an online series of content produced in the build-up to the awards.

Apiafi said: "This partnership cements the RMA as a clear stepping stone into the media side of the sport. The HWPA is positioned as the umbrella organisation of the many individuals within the sport’s varied media channels. By putting diversity and inclusion at the centre of what we do, our sport will become far more reflective of society and thus be attractive to a broader demographic of future fans.

"The only stipulation to apply to become an RMA cadet is a willingness to learn – and it’s amazing who walks through the door when the barriers to entry are removed. Together with the HWPA, we look forward to welcoming this year’s cohort, who start on their course at Newmarket on Sunday."

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