Eric DeCoster


Eric Decoster: Horseshoe Indianapolis, New York Racing Association, and Wanamaker's online auction house 

RTIP alum Eric Halstrom and Eric DeCoster at Horseshoe Indianapolis

I spent three days at Horseshoe Indianapolis shadowing RTIP alum, Eric Halstrom, Vice President and General Manager of Racing at Horseshoe Indianapolis. We originally connected through the Joe Hirsch Speaker Series and later at the Global Symposium on Racing. Halstrom showed me the day-to-day operations of the track over the course of the three days, as well as had me shadow other key members of his team.


Last summer I was fortunate enough to spend 12 weeks interning with the New York Racing Association between Belmont Park and Saratoga. Throughout my time I was able to work and shadow the many different functions of the racing office and racing department. I enjoyed working during some of racing's biggest days including the Belmont Stakes Festival and Whitney Stakes Day at Saratoga. In the mornings I would help take entries and finalize race cards alongside the racing office staff. Once operations moved to Saratoga, I worked as the assistant paddock judge, Helping check equipment and maintain flow during the races. I was even fortunate enough to call "Riders Up!" during the G1 Saratoga Derby and G2 Shuvee Stakes. I also got the privilege of working under Keith Doleshel and RTIP Alumn. I enjoyed my time in New York and can't wait to apply the skills I learned once I join the racing workforce. 

Eric DeCoster standing with a horse

Eric DeCoster hotwalking at Saratoga

The previous 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. — Eric DeCoster