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Eric Decoster standing in front of barn with horse
Eric hotwalking at Saratoga Racecourse

Eric Decoster: Wanamaker's

This summer, I was provided the wonderful opportunity to intern for Wanamaker’s, an online auction house for the Thoroughbred racehorses, in Saratoga Springs. At the direction of my boss, Liza Hendriks, I was tasked with helping develop the catalogue for the monthly online auctions, writing descriptions for horses entered in the sales, and recruiting potential sales prospects. This allowed me to see what goes on “behind the scenes” and the logistics of putting together a horse auction. It was amazing to be part of an innovative company within the Thoroughbred racing industry.

During this time in Saratoga, I was also able to work as a hotwalker for trainer Ray Handal. Ray was able to give me so much insight into what it takes to train a racehorse and the care that is put into the profession that I had never had exposure to before. Additionally, I was able to shadow him, as well as trainer Tom Morley, at two different Fasig-Tipton sales that took place in August. Given my immense interest in the bloodstock aspect of the industry, being able to pick the brains of these two men, as well as many other people, taught me so much about the intricacies of the Thoroughbred.

Overall, my experiences in Saratoga were life changing and only furthered my desire to be a part of the Thoroughbred racing industry. The countless people I met and relationships I was able to form are ones I hope to continue to develop, both personally and professionally, and I hope to return to  Saratoga for the summer in the very near future.