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Horse Racing Jockeys

Horse Racing Jockeys - Introduction

Horse Racing Jockeys are the people that actually have the job of riding the horse in the race. Generally jockeys specialize in either "jumps" racing or "flat" racing. This is because the skills needed to ride on jumps are very different from flat racing. Obviously it is a very special skill to navigate fences on steeplechases, as compared with the flat where they are no obstacles. If you have ever seen the sheer size of the fences at Aintree Racecourse, which are among the most challenging in the world, then you will realize that riding over "jumps" is alot more difficult than it looks. There is also the consequent problem of "fallers" i.e. where the horse being ridden fails to make the fence, causing the jockey to be thrown off the horse! This can be a very dangerous outcome, espcially when the other horses are travelling at some speed e.g. 40 mph

The Flat, also has its difficulties however. to begin with a jockey has to deal with the "stalls" and sometime difficult horses, that do not like being placed in such a confined space. This means some horses will "buck" i.e. rear up on their hind legs, possibly causing injury to a jockey. Races run on the Flat, especially sprints, are also run at a frantic pace, and although "falls" are very rare, should they happen, injury to a jockey is more likely than over Jumps. There are occasionally horses that "slip" on flat courses, and these can cause major problems for jockeys

Flat Jockeys have to deal with the problem of the "weights", which can be a real challenge. This is because the weights can start very low e.g. as low as in the 7lb region. A jockey has to ensure their own personal weight is kept under very strict control, if they are to meet the weights set for each horse. It should of course be remembered that a jockey will be riding lots of horses within a week, all at very different weights, so "making" the weight of some of the novice or maiden races will be a real problem. It has been known for some jockeys to "giveup" the racing game altogether due to thw problem of meeting the weights

Top Horse Racing Jockeys In 2006

A listing of the Top 10 Jockeys based on data from placed and winning horses in their charge is given below:

Flat Racing



Ryan Moore

182:1174 16 147 141 127 2,720,806

Jamie Spencer

155:840 18 113 98 88 2,583,778

Eddie Ahern

140:1155 12 128 109 129 1,248,007

Robert Winston

136:981 14 121 104 100 1,379,889

L Dettori

135:591 22 81 73 57 3,353,832

N Callan

129:1028 13 127 128 94 1,521,291

Seb Sanders

117:834 14 105 80 79 1,252,267

Richard Hughes

113:804 14 95 107 76 1,854,639

Joe Fanning

108:938 12 94 99 98 1,054,594

Paul Hanagan

107:1040 10 118 101 123 1,132,646

Jump Racing



A P McCoy

184:758 24 117 97 67 2,272,807

Richard Johnson

154:847 18 138 108 95 1,997,443

T J O'Brien

107:556 19 82 67 48 962,441

Robert Thornton

99:551 18 77 66 49 1,638,282

Timmy Murphy

98:542 18 71 53 59 1,452,637

G Lee

89:675 13 97 65 60 1,030,495

P J Brennan

80:512 16 59 62 59 945,680

Noel Fehily

75:474 16 65 65 40 841,445

R Walsh

73:291 25 55 40 22 2,304,412

Sam Thomas

73:462 16 68 40 49 765,443
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