Unit of competency details

RGRSTD401A - Perform duties of stipendiary steward at race meetings and trials (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to RGRSTD409 - Perform duties of a race day stewardUpdated to meet Standards for Training Packages Code and title change to reflect outcomes of unit 17/Dec/2017

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 24/Sep/2008


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 050105 Animal Husbandry  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 050105 Animal Husbandry  24/Sep/2008 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor

Unit descriptor 

This unit of competency specifies the outcomes required to administer race meeting and trial operations and manage the job functions associated with checking eligibility of racing participants, including greyhounds and horses, checking equipment used in races, reading and controlling races, identifying participating animals and ensuring the security, safety and welfare of participants and animals.

The unit requires strong verbal and written communication and the knowledge and skills associated with supervising staff and race meeting or trial personnel, enforcing the rules of racing and safe operating procedures, providing information on races, hearing protests, conducting inquiries and updating reports, records and other relevant documentation.

This unit of competency operates in workplace environments of racing administration, kennels, stables, racecourses and public areas.

Greyhound, harness and thoroughbred racing is strictly regulated throughout Australia. All stewards are appointed under the rules of racing by the relevant racing controlling body. For this reason enrolment in this unit of competency is restricted to people currently employed as a stipendiary or cadet steward or those who have been approved by a State Principal Racing Authority to undertake this unit.

Application of the Unit

Application of the unit 

This unit of competency supports a stipendiary or cadet steward to administer race meeting and trial operations and manage the associated job functions.

Competencies attained in this unit apply to the greyhound, harness or thoroughbred code of the industry. Consequently when performance criteria are applied they will relate to the greyhound code or the harness code or the thoroughbred code, and statements of attainment for this unit will reflect this distinction.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not Applicable


Prerequisite units 

Employability Skills Information

Employability skills 

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria



Prepare for race meetings and trials.

1. Information on race form  is evaluated prior to race meeting or trial.

2. Fields and race distances are confirmed.

3. Club officials and track staff are liaised with on track conditions, race club facilities and racing procedures .

4. Duties are allocated to staff  at race meetings or trials.

5. Control of restricted areas is confirmed.

6. Track conditionis inspected and assessed for racing safety  .

7. Track rating is declared.

Conduct race meetings.

8. Animal welfare issues  are referred to veterinarian or other specialist.

9. Racing participant OHS issues  are identified and resolved.

10. Races are conducted within time available and according to racing protocols and procedures.

11. Operations and incidents are managed within time available.

12. Race day issues are referred for appropriate resolution.

13. Race day incidents and emergencies are managed following racing protocols and safe operating procedures.

14. Riders, drivers and others are assisted after critical race incidents  .

Hear protests.

15. Notice of protest is provided to racing participants.

16. Persons involved are called to investigation.

17. Protest is heard and evaluated.

18. Protest decision is announced.

Reports and post-race activities are finalised.

19. Swab samples are forwarded to laboratory.

20. Steward reports are finalised.

21. Evidence  is secured for appeals or future reference.

22. Race form records are updated.

Required Skills and Knowledge


This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • allocating duties to staff based on a range of operational requirements, staff experience, level of responsibility and complexity of job task
  • adhering to safe handling and work practices when working around greyhounds or horses
  • communicating with other stewards, racing officials, licensed and registered personnel and others using assertive communication techniques to gather, interpret and relay information related to steward duties
  • completing duties in accordance with safe operating procedures and nominated time frame
  • complying with organisational policies and procedures
  • computer skills, including:
  • data entry and retrieval
  • email and internet
  • spreadsheets
  • word processing
  • enforcing the rules of racing
  • identifying different items of industry-approved greyhound and horse race gear and assessing their condition in terms of safe use and need for repair
  • identifying individual animals by industry signalment and documents
  • identifying signs of ill health, injury or pain in racing animals
  • managing race day incidents and emergencies
  • monitoring and maintaining OHS and environmental work procedures
  • providing clear and concise reports on race performance in verbal and written formats
  • reading and controlling races
  • reading and interpreting workplace documentation, including rules of racing
  • relating to people from a range of social, cultural and ethnic backgrounds and with varying physical and mental abilities
  • teamwork skills to ensure completion of job tasks
  • using initiative, discretion and judgements to solve racing issues and problems
  • using video and DVD recording and re-play devices and other equipment and technology for racing operations duties
  • working within the boundaries set by regulatory bodies, other regulations and the racing industry
  • written communication skills to complete workplace documentation and reports.

Required knowledge 

  • avenues and procedures for personnel to access grief counselling
  • communication procedures for communicating with other stewards and officials, including reporting lines within the workplace and wider racing industry
  • ethical conduct standards of relevant racing principal authority
  • greyhound or racehorse identification features
  • hazards and potential hazards in the workplace and risk control procedures
  • industry terminology related to steward duties, racing operations and wider racing industry
  • OHS and environmental legislative responsibilities
  • organisational policies and procedures
  • principles of administrative law and natural justice when applied to racing investigations, protests, inquiries and appeals
  • principles of effective communication
  • procedures for hearing protests, conducting inquiries and gathering evidence
  • procedures for operation and maintenance of required equipment and technology
  • processes and methods used to read races
  • purpose of gear and reasons for identifying and reporting problems with condition, fit and safety
  • racing industry animal welfare requirements
  • racing industry safety requirements, including safe operating procedures
  • reasons racing animals may not perform as expected
  • relevant rules of racing
  • reporting requirements for irregularities and problems
  • roles and activities of licensed and non-licensed racing industry personnel
  • symptoms of and ways of checking for common signs of injury, ill health or distress in racing animals
  • track ratings and conditions.

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

The evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit must be relevant to workplace operations and satisfy all of the requirements of the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge and the range statement of this unit and include evidence of the following:

  • knowledge of the requirements, procedures and instructions that are to apply when performing the duties of a stipendiary steward during race meetings and trials
  • implementation of procedures and timely techniques for the safe, effective and efficient application of stipendiary steward trial and race day duties
  • working with others to undertake and complete the required procedures that meet required outcomes.

Evidence should be collected over a period of time in a range of race meeting and trial contexts, and include dealings with an appropriate range of situations.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Competency must be assessed in a racing workplace that provides access to the required resources. Assessment is to occur under standard and authorised work practices, safety requirements and environmental constraints. It is to comply with relevant regulatory requirements or Australian Standards requirements.

Assessment of the practical components of this unit will be by observation of relevant skills.

The following resources must be available:

  • materials and equipment relevant to assessing candidate's ability to perform the race meeting and trial duties of a stipendiary steward
  • race meetings and trials, and related facilities
  • work instructions and related documentation.

Method of assessment 

Assessment methods must satisfy the endorsed Assessment Guidelines of the Racing Training Package.

The suggested strategies for the assessment of this unit are:

  • written and/or oral assessment of candidate's required knowledge
  • observed, documented and firsthand testimonial evidence of candidate's application of practical tasks.

Evidence is required to be demonstrated over a period of time, therefore where performance is not directly observed any evidence should be authenticated by supervisors or other appropriate persons, at least one of whom should be approved by the State Principal Racing Authority.

This unit may be assessed in a holistic way with other units of competency relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role, for example:

  • RGRCMN401A Maintain and monitor OHS procedures and environmental work practices.

Guidance information for assessment 

Assessment methods should reflect workplace demands (e.g. literacy and numeracy demands) and the needs of particular target groups (e.g. people with disabilities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, women, people with a language background other than English, youth and people from low socioeconomic backgrounds).

Range Statement


The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording in the performance criteria is detailed below.

The range statement provides details of how this competency can be used in the workplaces of the racing industry to perform the duties of a stipendiary steward at race meetings and trials. Workplaces include greyhound, harness and thoroughbred racecourses, training tracks and administration buildings.

Stewards oversee the conduct of all racing-related activities within the responsibilities and powers described under the rules of racing. The conditions under which this unit is delivered and assessed must take into consideration these powers and responsibilities. These powers and responsibilities are further described in the rules of racing for the relevant racing code. It is strongly recommended that training facilitators and learners refer to these powers and responsibilities as part of the range of conditions for all units covered in the steward specialist area of the Training Package.

Methods used to evaluate race form  may include:

  • form guide
  • software for speed map preparation and form interpretation
  • stewards' reports
  • video re-plays.

Club officials and track staff  may include:

  • clerk of course
  • race club operations manager
  • race club secretary
  • race starter
  • track maintenance manager
  • track maintenance staff.

Liaising on track conditions , race club facilities and racing procedures  will include:

  • confirming starting equipment is operational
  • confirming swabbing staff are in attendance and appropriate security for samples is provided
  • conveying accurate information on track condition and rating to:
  • drivers
  • jockeys
  • owners
  • punters
  • trainers
  • ensuring emergency and first aid equipment and facilities are available for humans and animals
  • ensuring phone access is available for contacting TAB and media to advise of race results, late scratchings and protests.

Duties allocated to staff  at race meetings and trials will include:

  • allocating stewards to observation positions around track
  • arranging for swab samples to be sent to laboratory for analysis
  • carrying out or supervising pre-race identification
  • calling greyhounds or horses to parade or marshalling area
  • calling greyhounds to stir-up area and to starting boxes
  • calling horses to starting stalls
  • calling jockeys to mount up
  • checking starting positions of each race
  • checking track conditions
  • checking updated eligibility list against current suspension list
  • conducting post-race protests
  • inspecting bandages and other gear
  • liaising with trainers, drivers and jockeys if there are problems with engaged drivers or riders
  • participating in post-meeting inquiries or appeals
  • selecting animals for pre-race swabbing and supervising the procedure
  • sending field to the start.

Racing safety  related to track condition may include:

  • debris left on track
  • moisture content
  • rail position and condition
  • turf, dirt or synthetic surface maintenance.

Animal welfare issues  may include:

  • epistaxis
  • exhaustion
  • injuries
  • lameness
  • overheating.

OHS issues  identification and resolution may include:

  • adhering to responsibilities under OHS legislation and workplace practices
  • adhering to responsibilities under national and state codes of practice; federal, state and territory legislation; and local government regulations covering animal welfare
  • adhering to rules of racing and rules of the race venue
  • applying correct manual handling techniques, including:
  • carrying
  • shifting
  • lifting
  • considering variables that influence behaviour of greyhounds or horses, such as:
  • fences and equipment
  • lure, wind and noise
  • other persons or animals
  • vehicles
  • eliminating hazardous substances and materials
  • ensuring accident and emergency equipment is available and in good working order, including:
  • fire safety equipment
  • first aid equipment for humans and animals
  • safety signage
  • ensuring trial and race meeting specific health and safety procedures for the protection of others, including:
  • all gear used on greyhounds or horses is approved and of good quality
  • drivers or jockeys are in a fit state to compete
  • required equipment and vehicles are well maintained and in operational order, including:
  • barriers
  • lures
  • mobile start vehicles
  • starting boxes
  • tractors
  • personal protective equipment conforms to required standards
  • track is in a fit and proper state for safe and competitive racing
  • following safe operating procedures
  • identifying hazards and applying risk control measures
  • reporting unsafe work practices
  • understanding accident and injury procedures.

Assistance following critical race incidents  may include:

  • advising persons involved or immediate witnesses of ways to access counselling
  • identifying emergency or accident, and responding in accordance with race club procedures
  • working within safe operating procedures.

Evidence  may include:

  • copies of betting sheets and fluctuations
  • inquiry transcripts
  • stewards' reports
  • swab materials
  • videos.

Unit Sector(s)

Unit Sector 

Greyhound, harness and thoroughbred racing codes

Co-requisite units

Co-requisite units 

Functional Area

Functional Area 

Racing common