As we tick into a new calendar year, the Australian Trainers’ Association (ATA) will achieve a significant milestone in 2017 when it celebrates 50 years since it was established.
From humble surrounds of a rented office in the Melbourne suburb of South Melbourne, a skeleton staff and single industrial relations purpose, the ATA has today grown to a robust organisation with active branches and/or representation across all Australian states.
Industrial relations are still at the core of our offering to members. However, in keeping with the changing needs of our members, and a rapidly changing racing industry, the ATA has had to keep pace. Our expanded suite of services today include trainer advocacy support for the likes of disciplinary matters, input on rules of racing, race day matters and training infrastructure needs, together with general business support which includes insurance and risk advisory, debt recovery, a short form of training terms and conditions, to facilitating legal and superannuation advice. Our retail subsidiary, Racing Supplies Ltd, also allows trainers to purchase a wide range of equine products - from saddles to vitamins and veterinary products, through to feed, vaccines and stable equipment - at discounted prices.
More recently, the ATA established the Australian Trainers’ Trust, the only national medium of its kind, designed to provide assistance where a trainer suffers acute financial hardship as a result of serious injury, illness and/or death.
Importantly, the ATA has earned the respect of the State Principal Racing Authorities and the industry regulator, Racing Australia. This has been an essential ingredient, which supports and will continue to do so, the constructive consultation which has led to the many working benefits and improvements the ATA has won for trainers over the years.
The ATA is proud to have contributed in a meaningful way to advance the training profession in this country. We remain committed to continuing the forward fight for the benefit of the profession and all trainers, including our 1,000 strong current membership base.
Lastly, and recognising the significance of the 50 year milestone, all ATA communications for 2017 will carry the commemorative logo. We have planned a number of events for roll out across the country in 2017 – with the first being themed race events e.g.: “ATA Celebrates 50 years Handicap”, which will offer bonus trainer payments (in addition to usual prizemoney) to ATA members whose horses finish in the 1-2-3 placings.
Stay tuned, state by state details and timing for all events and promotions will follow very shortly.
Chief Executive Officer