Equine Guelph Supports BGRA and Donates Courses for Derby Winners


Equine Guelph, a leader in equine research and dedicated to improving the health and well-being of horses, is supporting the Bill Galvin Racing Alliance (BGRA) by providing complimentary courses for the senior division winners of the four horse themed youth contests.

“Equine Guelph supported the 2018 Literary Derby, and we are very supportive of the BGRA and its mission, said Gayle Ecker, director of Equine Guelph. “As an enthusiastic partner in the promotion of the four contests, and a strong advocate of education for young horse lovers, Equine Guelph is pleased to provide online Horse Behavior and Safety courses for the winners of the senior divisions in the Youth Literary Derby, Art Derby, Photo Derby and Video Derby. We hope the winners will enjoy furthering their interest in horses and learning the language of the horse during this highly interactive course,” Ecker continued.

“We are very pleased to have Equine Guelph’s support along with their enthusiasm and willingness to promote the contests at events they are participating in this year,” said Karen Hauver, founding Director of the BGRA.  “Partnerships like this are very important in furthering the mission and the work of the Alliance.”

The deadline for the Youth Literary Derby and Youth Art Derby is coming up fast – June 27, 2023.  The winner in each division will receive $250, second prize will be $150, and third place will take home $100.

Students can write a short story or poem on a Standardbred foal to enter in the Literary Derby with separate contests for poems and short stories and they can draw or sketch a Standardbred mare and/or foal for the Art Derby.

Mares and foals at Tom Rankins Farm visited by Youth Derby contestants

The Photography Derby and Video Derby will take place over the summer months with entries due on August 31, 2023. Students and their parents will be encouraged to visit family friendly events at Ontario racetracks for inspiration for the theme which is Standardbred horses.

Prominent Standardbred owner and breeder, Tom Rankin, has generously sponsored the prize money for these four contests.  On May 13, Rankin hosted a very successful Open House event at his St. Catharines breeding operation to provide some inspiration for aspiring writers and artists.

Contest Rules, videos, resources, and other information are available on the BGRA website.

Bill Galvin Racing Alliance logo

About the Bill Galvin Racing Alliance

A group of Ontario harness racing enthusiasts who were friends and associates of the late Bill Galvin, formed the BGRA to promote Ontario harness racing in the Hall of Famer’s honour.

The mission of the BGRA is to work together to create and encourage partnerships and programs that will promote and grow harness racing by engaging the public with the racing community.

For more information on the contests, contact [email protected]