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Obtaining a RUS License

If you have previously held a RUS license you are eligible to renew at any time. The easiest and fastest way to renew your license is through Online Services , a secure area for you to conduct business with the USTA via an online account.

What are the basics on obtaining a new RUS license?

  • You must be a current member. For information on membership please click here .
  • We will need a completed application and the fee.

*Please note: the expiration date on your RUS license will be the same as your membership. If you have a multi-year membership you will need to pay for a multi-year RUS license.

  • The fees for a new license are as follows:

One Year $55
Three Years $165

*If you are obtaining a new membership additional fees apply.

Once the application is submitted what is the process?

  • Letters are mailed to the references. At least 2 satisfactory reference forms must be returned before the licensing process can continue.
  • We will then notify you in writing that you are eligible to take the required written examination. You will also be advised of the procedure that is in place for the administration of the exam. There is a $10 fee that is due when you take the exam.
  • Exams can be taken at the USTA office in Columbus, OH or you may select an examination supervisor from the approved supervisor list. This list will be provided to you when you are notified that you are eligible to take the test.
  • Once you have satisfactorily completed the written exam you will be required to take the practical exam. We will send you a practical examination form via mail or email. This will need to be taken to a presiding judge of a pari-mutuel racetrack who will sign the form upon his approval.
  • Upon your satisfactory completion of the practical exam, your license will be issued and mailed to you. Please note: applicants for a new RUS license are required to furnish a current eye exam report before the license can be issued.

Can reference forms be mailed to me or to the track?

All reference forms are mailed or emailed directly to the licensed reference. All the information contained on the reference form is strictly confidential.

Is there any material available to help pass the tests?

We strongly encourage you to read the USTA Rules and Regulations. This booklet is available on our web site or one may be mailed to you. The New Care & Training of the Trotter and Pacer is also available for current USTA members. These are both excellent study tools.

How are the tests scored?

Tests are graded as "Satisfactory" or "Unsatisfactory". A numerical score is not given.

Please note: If an "Unsatisfactory" score is received you must wait 60 days before re-examination. If a second "Unsatisfactory" score is received you must wait 6 months before re-examination.

What does the written test consist of?

The test consists of a variety of questions including true/false and multiple choice. There is a 2 hour time limit for completing the test.

What does the practical test consist of?

This exam requires you to demonstrate the following:

  • Go TWO satisfactory workout miles in a specified time behind the starting gate
  • Correctly identify various overcheck and driving bits
  • Identify various shoes and know their uses

Do I have to submit an eye exam?

Eye exams are required to obtain a new RUS license. We would encourage you to submit the Eye Exam form when you return the practical exam form. Please do not send an eye exam with your initial application as it may be outdated by the time you are licensed. Eye exam forms are not required by the USTA for renewing a license, however, some states require the information to be on your license.

Tips on making the process as smooth as possible:

  • List at least four persons and their USTA license numbers who can give firsthand information on your qualifications.
  • All persons listed must have a current USTA membership and RUS license.
  • Each qualified person listed as a reference will be sent a reference form by the USTA to their permanent address or email as reported to the USTA.

RUS Electronic Eligibilities

Horses that plan on racing under saddle must have RUS electronic eligibilities activated prior to entering for any RUS event. This is in addition to the eligibility they hold for regular harness events. If a horse has been issued lifetime US eligibility there is no fee for RUS activation, simply call the USTA office at 877-800-8782, extension 1 and request RUS eligibility.

RUS Rules

The USTA Rule Book contains the rules and regulations for racing in the United States.

North American Race Records


Trotting on a Mile Track

TT1:54.1 Moni Maker b m, 7, by Speedy Crown - Nan's Catch (Julie Krone)
The Red Mile, Lexington, KY, October 6, 2000

1:56.3 Modest Prince, b g, 6, by Rc Royalty - In To Me (Helene Gregory) Meadowlands, East Rutherford, NY, November 5, 2016

Trotting on a Five Eighths-Mile Track

1:58.3 Lets Leavem b g, 7, by Angus Hall Who Tookem (Sarah Town) Kawartha Downs, Fraserville, ON, September 23, 2017

Trotting on a Half Mile Track

1:59.3 Santo Domingo, b g, 8, by Amigo Hall - Victory Lady (Philippe Masschaele)
Flamboro Downs, Dundas, Ont., October 31, 2015


Pacing on a Mile Track

1:59 Highly Rated, b g, 4, by Nukes Image-Fair Rating (Darla Conklin)
Hoosier Park, Anderson, IN, June 14, 1998

Pacing on a Five Eighths-Mile Track

1:59 Highly Rated, b g, 4, by Nukes Image-Fair Rating (Darla Conklin)
The Meadows, Washington, PA, August 7, 1998

Pacing on a Half Mile Track

2:00 Highly Rated, b g, 4, by Nukes Image-Fair Rating (Darla Conklin)
Northfield Park, Northfield, OH, July 26, 1998


Contact Information
Michele Kopiec
Racing Under Saddle Administrator
(877) 800-USTA (8782) ext. 3294

RUS Schedule
No New Events Are Scheduled

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