How Much Does A Horse Jockey Weigh?

The weight of a jockey usually ranges from 108 to 118 lb (49 to 54 kg). Despite their light weight, they must be able to control a horse that is moving at 40 mph (64 km/h) and weighs 1,190.5 lb (540.0 kg). Though there is no height limit for jockeys, they are usually fairly short due to the weight limits.

What is the average weight of a horse jockey?

  • The weight of a jockey usually ranges from 108 to 118 lb (49 to 54 kg). Despite their light weight, they must be able to control a horse that is moving at 40 mph (64 km/h) and weighs 1,200 lb (540 kg). Though there is no height limit for jockeys, they are usually fairly short due to the weight limits.

What is the average height and weight of a horse jockey?

On average, a horse jockey weighs between 108 to 118 Pounds & their Average Height Is 4’10” to 5’6 ″ It takes a lot of hard work and discipline for a rider to maintain weight. Jockeys have to meet minimum weight requirements to make sure all horses in a race are fairly matched.

How much does a horse jockey make?

The salaries of Horse Jockeys in the US range from $10,049 to $271,427, with a median salary of $48,880. The middle 57% of Horse Jockeys makes between $48,882 and $123,036, with the top 86% making $271,427.

How much does a flat jockey weigh?

It’s typical for flat racing jockeys to weigh less than their jump racing compatriots, with the former being the ones that come in at around 8 stone and the latter at 9 stone. Different races will have different weight requirements, with limits being typical.

Why do jockeys weigh in before and after a race?

Each horse in a race has to carry a certain amount of weight. To make sure that it does so, all jockeys must weigh out before a race to make sure they and their kit (including the saddle) are the right weight. After the race the jockey must weigh in with all his kit, to confirm that the horse carried the right weight.

Do jockeys make good money?

A top-ranking professional jockey will make an average of $271,427 yearly, with very few making upwards of $2 million a year. To make it all the way to the top takes years of experience and lots of talent. Only a few jockeys will become millionaires during their career, as most will barely make a living wage.

Can a jockey own a racehorse?

Can jockeys own racehorses? No, jockeys are not allowed to own a horse they ride. Too much gambling money at stake, and even the appearance of impropriety is avoided.

How many times can a jockey whip a horse?

Whip Rules The permitted number of uses of the whip with hands off the reins is 7 times for Flat races and 8 times for Jumps race. Stewards will consider whether to hold an enquiry if a rider has used his whip 8 times or more in a Flat race or 9 times or more in a Jump race or misused the whip in some other way.

Does whipping a horse make it run faster?

Jockeys hit horses during a race to encourage them to run faster to win their race. But a recent study of the effectiveness of whipping horses indicates that horses don’t run any faster when hit; however, horses are individuals, and some may increase their speed when encouraged with a whip.

Do jockeys talk during races?

Jockeys do talk to each other during races. The leading Flat jockey Greville Starkey used to do a marvellous imitation of a barking dog and occasionally went into his routine during a finish to put off an opponent’s mount.

Do jockeys train with horses?

Sometimes jockeys have relationships with trainers and exercise all his horses. Horses’ entered into an allowance or stakes races are commonly ridden by their race day jockey for their official workouts. These rides during workouts give the rider a feel for the horse before the race.

What is the lowest weight recorded for a jockey?

Giovanni Porte is known to be the lightest horse jockey on record. He weighed just 88 pounds (40 kg).

What happens if a jockey is overweight?

If the rider is too heavy, he may be replaced by another rider, or be permitted to carry ‘overweight’, which will always be announced on the racecourse before a race begins. However, no rider is allowed to weigh out at four pounds or more over the weight he is set to carry.

How much weight do horses lose during a race?

A horse can lose up to 5% of his body weight in a one-mile race; for an average-sized Thoroughbred, this calculates to more than 50 lbs. The majority of weight loss in a race is fluid. Horses burn lots of calories and lose fluids during regular exercise, but when the weight they lose is staggering.

What percentage does a jockey get for winning a race?

The real money for jockeys comes from prize money, if they can ride a horse to finish first, second or third in a race and earn part of the purse. The percentages a jockey receives for a thoroughbred race range from 5% for a second- or third-place finish to 10% for first place, according to the Covington Reporter.

How Much Do The Kentucky Derby Jockeys Weigh? There Are Strict Rules

Jocks, like wrestlers, must adhere to rigorous weight limitations, which frequently necessitates them keeping a careful eye on their physical condition. If you watch the Kentucky Derby on Saturday in Louisville, you’ll undoubtedly notice that the jockeys who will be competing are all rather diminutive in comparison to the horses they will be riding. The exact amount that Kentucky Derby jockeys weigh, on the other hand, may surprise you, as the famed race has a very low weight limit. For each race, the regulations are slightly different.

The Kentucky Derby is on the heavier end of the spectrum, with a maximum weight of 126 pounds.

The fact that the vast majority of jockeys are male makes the low limit all the more egregious.

As a result, they have petite athletic builds that allow riders to ride racehorses without impeding the animals’ ability to move quickly.

Thirty percent of jockeys vomit up to reduce weight, 69 percent skip meals, and 14 percent use laxatives to drop weight, according to a 1995 research on jockeys’ health conducted by the Chicago Rehabilitation Institute.

The bowls, which were often a square porcelain bowl with a hole that was higher than a toilet, were removed from the Kentucky Derby’s Churchill Downs track ten years ago, but the incidence of bulimia in the sport has not been completely eliminated.

Horse racing is highly opposed by animal rights organizations because of the toll it takes on the animals.

The former rider Jeff Johnston told CNN’s Sheena McKenzie in 2012 that “we’re simply in the process of teaching jockeys on healthy diets and raising up minimum weights.” “In that regard, the United States lags far behind Europe.”

How Tall Are Horse Jockeys? How Much Do They Weigh?

Have you ever sat through a horse race and pondered what it takes to be a jockey on a horseback? Then you’ve arrived to the correct location. Here, we will address all of your concerns concerning the physical qualities of successful jockeys in one comprehensive essay.

What Is a Horse Jockey?

A jockey is a person who makes their living by riding horses in races. They are often self-employed and race for the benefit of horse owners and trainers in exchange for a fee. In addition, they are often paid a portion of whatever winnings the horse generates. Generally speaking, jockeys specialize in a particular type of horse racing. Races in which the horse must gallop around an oval track, leap over obstacles, and do other tasks are examples of such activities. There is no difference between the types of races in that the aim is to get the horse to reach the finish line first, before any other horses do.

How Much Does a Horse Jockey Weigh?

The average weight of a horse jockey is between 108 and 118 pounds. Because race commissioners specify the maximum amount of weight that a single horse may carry, including equipment, there is minimal fluctuation in the weight of jockeys and their horses. When feasible, racehorses are saddled with the lightest riders possible to give them the best potential advantage. The less weight a horse must bear, the quicker it will run. The health of the horse is frequently stated as a justification for severe weight restrictions, with some claiming that carrying too much weight might cause the horse to suffer damage.

With a weight restriction of 126 pounds, the Kentucky Derby is one of the most liberal races in the country.

How Tall are Horse Jockeys?

The height of a horse jockey is a little more varied, often ranging between 4’10” and 5’6″ in height. This is due to the fact that racing commissioners do not impose a minimum or maximum height requirement. Horse jockeys, on the other hand, are often shorter than the general population since it is extremely difficult and often harmful for a taller individual to maintain such a low body weight. The fact that the majority of jockeys are male makes the extremely low weight standards all the more dramatic.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

How Fit Do Horse Jockeys Need to Be?

In addition to satisfying strict physical requirements, jockeys must be in excellent physical condition. Jockeys must be both nimble and strong in order to maintain control of a powerful horse weighing at least 1,000 pounds. A jockey’s career might be jeopardized if he or she fails to do well in this area. When it comes to becoming a jockey, you must have powerful legs and a very strong core in order to maintain control of the horse while being balanced on the saddle. Furthermore, you must possess considerable endurance.

Jockeys are known to resort to diets and rapid weight-loss techniques such as sauna sessions in order to ensure that they weigh in at or below the maximum weight allowed for a given race.

In addition to endangering a jockey’s general health, these activities are dangerous since they make it difficult to remain concentrated and powerful on race day. Image courtesy of dreamtemp and Pixabay.

Final Thoughts

Horse racing is not only physically demanding for the horses, but it is also physically demanding for the riders. Simply being present on the racecourse is a high-risk endeavor due to the possibility of falling from the horse and receiving significant injuries. When they are not racing, jockeys must make a conscious effort to maintain their fitness level and race weight in order to ensure that they will be able to compete in the future. A career as a horse jockey is not for everyone, and it is important to evaluate the physical demands and hazards involved, as well as the amount of devotion required to be successful in the profession.

He has a bachelor’s degree in zoology from the University of Adelaide (who declined to be pictured).

Ollie has since discovered a new passion for working online and blogging about animals of all kinds.

Horse Jockeys: How Big Are They & Their Fight to Make Weight

Any links on this page that direct you to things on Amazon are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase, I will receive a compensation. Thank you in advance for your assistance — I much appreciate it! While watching a horse race recently, my thoughts began to wander to the size of the jockeys, and I began to wonder how tall they are and how much weight they must be carrying. As a result, I conducted some study on jockey sizes. A horse jockey weighs between 108 and 118 pounds on average, and their typical height ranges from 4’10” to 5’6 ′′.

To ensure that all horses in a race are evenly matched, jockeys are required to adhere to minimum weight restrictions.

Average Male (US) Average Male Jockey Average Female (US) Average Female Jockey
Height 5’9″ 5’2″ 5’4″ 5’2″
Weight 200 lbs 113 lbs 170 lbs 107 lbs

Why Jockeys Can’t Be Big?

Given the little stature of some of the jockeys, I’m often concerned about their ability to control a thoroughbred hurtling down the racecourse at breakneck speed. This leads to another question: why can’t jockeys be as huge as they want to be? There is a minimum weight requirement for each horse in a race, which is normally 115-116 pounds inclusive of equipment. There are no minimum height criteria for horses competing in races. A tall individual, on the other hand, will find it nearly hard to attain the requisite weight while still maintaining the strength to ride and control their horse.

  • To guarantee that the exact quantity is obtained, the jockey must walk on the scales and weigh himself while holding his equipment (including saddle).
  • Once the race has concluded, all of the jockeys must go through the same procedure again.
  • During the race, a horse is weighed to check that he is carrying the appropriate amount of weight for the distance.
  • They feel that when the horse is on a living body, the weight is carried better by the horse than when the animal is carrying extra weights in a bag.

I created an essay on jockeys, which included some intriguing facts about why they dress the way they do, as well as some photos. For anyone interested in learning about the life of a jockey, I recommend that you visit this website.

How do jockeys stay so small?

“Some riders will go so far as to saw their legs off in order to stay below the limit.” Eddie Arcaro is a retired jockey who is a member of the Hall of Fame. Racehorse owners usually prefer a lightweight jockey to ride their horses, because jockeys only earn money while they are on the track. Riders were permitted to weigh as little as 95 pounds, including the weight of their equipment, in 1929. Over the years, jockeys have employed a variety of strategies in order to achieve their weight objectives.

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Weight loss methods used by jockeys

The following is a list of the most popular weight loss strategies employed by jockeys, in no particular order:

  • Flipping is a word used by jockeys to describe vomit that they have experienced. It became such a prevalent practice that “flipping bowls” were erected in the jockey quarters to prevent it from happening again. The practice of “flipping” has continued to be practiced despite the removal of the bowls over the years
  • The Chicago Rehabilitation Institute conducted a study on jockeys’ health and discovered that 69 percent of the jockeys missed meals in order to lose weight
  • This is consistent with other studies. These drugs are often used to aid in the stimulation of bowel motions. They’re used as a constipation treatment as well as a popular weight-loss method in many cultures. There are several various types of laxatives, and each one works in a different way to stimulate bowel motions. To decrease water weight, jockeys use diuretics, which they utilize to dehydrate themselves. It is not just diuretics that cause a person to ‘lose water,’ but they also do so in a variety of ways, one of which is by impairing the kidney’s capacity to reabsorb salt. Laxis is another drug that jockeys utilize to reduce water weight, which they do in saunas and hot baths. To shed weight rapidly, athletes would wear in rubber suits or thick sweatshirts and run in place of their normal clothing. Cigarette smoking: The usage of tobacco is utilized to suppress one’s hunger. Dietary Supplements

Jockey, like other sportsmen who must fulfill rigorous weight standards, subjected their body to a grueling physical test. Not only do they need to drop a significant amount of weight, but they also need to maintain a level of health that allows them to ride and control their horse. The lighter a rider is, the greater the number of horses he or she may ride.

Jockeys suffer serious health problems make weight.

The struggle to gain weight that jockeys face has both short- and long-term consequences for their health. Their efforts to reduce weight have had negative consequences, including tooth erosion, dietary inadequacies, menstruation irregularity, low bone density, dehydration, and heat stress, among other things. Any of these factors might have a negative impact on the rider’s performance on race day. As we all know, the typical weight of a jockey is between 108 and 118 pounds, and the usual height of a jockey is between 4’10” and 5’6″, with the average being 5’2″.

The average weight of a fit female 5’2 is 125 lbs according to the standard Height to Weight Ratio Chart.

Aside from increasing the amount of weight that horses must carry during a race, it makes sense to include more female jockeys because fit ladies naturally have less weight to drop in order to ride in a competition.

Despite the fact that nutrition alterations are beneficial, the most efficient adjustment is to raise the amount of weight horses bear.

Jockeys bones become fragile because of their constant dieting.

Long-term dietary abuse causes a decrease in bone density, which increases the likelihood of breaking a bone when compared to the average person of their height and weight. Falling from a horse while standing six feet tall and running 45 miles per hour is dangerous for the average person. Adding to this equation the fact that the rider is a frail boned and malnourished individual, and you have a recipe for disaster on your hands. The extreme diets followed by the jockeys continue to have a negative impact on their long-term health.

Other side effects include abdominal bloating and distress, low potassium levels, irregular or absent menstrual periods, swallowing difficulties, esophageal damage, and in some severe cases, rupture of the esophagus as well as weak rectal walls.

When it comes to racehorses, Lasix is a medication that is commonly used to reduce fluid retention and control the amount of bleeding that occurs in the lungs. Many jockeys, on the other hand, use Laxis to remove that last bit of water weight that is required in order to make weight.

Jockeys use Lasix to drop weight.

The use of laxatives might force the kidneys to work too hard, which can result in irreversible kidney damage and dysfunction. Every one of these health problems arises in order for these sportsmen to shed a few additional pounds before their competitions. Furthermore, not only does their weight diminish, but so does their strength and ability to protect themselves as well. It is necessary to raise the weight restrictions. A rider who maintains his or her normal weight will have greater muscle and denser bones.

When it came to making weight in the 1920s and 1930s, the jockeys were willing to go to any length to do it.

Sunny Greenberg steamed in a Turkish bath, drank Epsom salts mixed with jalap, boarded a boat from Detroit to Windsor and vomited the entire trip—then donned a rubber suit over several layers of heavy clothing and ran around and around the track to lose enough weight to ride a horse in Windsor, Canada.

He awakened in a pool of perspiration and tried to clear his head by downing a half-ounce of whiskey to help him get back on track.

It was all for nought, as they say.

He handed the mount to someone else and left the country shortly after.” View a race from the perspective of a rider

Why Are There Weight Restrictions for Jockeys?

The basic response is that the horse’s health is paramount. Throughout the years, owners and trainers have maintained that a lighter jockey can exert more control over the horse while also reducing the stress on the horse. They feel that raising the weight of the rider will result in a greater number of breakdowns in the racing horse’s performance. In particular, they anticipate that bearing the higher weight will result in more leg injuries. I published an essay regarding the rate of horse fatality on race tracks that you might find interesting if you’re interested in knowing more about racehorse injuries.

The majority of exercise riders weigh between 150 and 160 pounds, and there have been no reported harmful effects on health.

Steeplechase jockeys often weigh 135 pounds on average.

Steeplechase horses are subjected to tremendous amounts of strain on their legs. Not only are they sprinting at top speed, but they are also jumping high into the air. What makes you think a racehorse galloping on a level track will be able to withstand the weight of these thoroughbred athletes?

Have There Ever Been Any Tall Jockeys?

When we go to the racetrack, there is one really tall rider that stands out from the crowd, yet he is probably just 5’7.” After seeing him on our most recent visit to the track, I began to wonder whether there have ever been any jockeys who were very tall. There have been some really tall jockeys in the past. Stuart Brown, who stood over 6 feet 3 inches tall, was the world’s tallest rider when he competed in his home nation of Australia. Despite the fact that he was particularly tall and had to work hard to maintain the proper weight, he had a long and successful professional career.

  • Richard Hughes from the United Kingdom, who stands at 5’10”, is the world’s tallest male jockey who is currently actively competing.
  • She stands at a towering 6’1″ and weighs just 112 pounds, making her the world’s tallest jockey.
  • He has a height of 7 feet 7 inches.
  • He utilized this as a means of raising finances and bringing attention to the condition of his native Sudan, which he had fled as a child.
  • How much do jockeys make per hour?
  • Nevertheless, the compensation for a race might be as little as $28 per race or as much as $124,000 for a triple crown tournament.
  • Is it possible to find female jockeys?
  • Diane Crumpin was the first female jockey to compete in the Kentucky Derby, which took place in 1970.

Related articles:

  • After a race, why do race horses bleed from the nose after they have finished? How Frequently Do Racehorses Compete
  • The average lifespan of a racehorse is five years. What causes certain racehorses to carry an extra amount of weight? What Causes Race Horses to Be So Young? In a race, does age make a difference
  • What is the purpose of race horses wearing masks and other protective gear? What is the most desirable horse breed? (The top three breeds in terms of activity)
  • To learn more about what horses wear during a race, please visit this page.

10 Things You Never Knew About Horse Jockeys

To horse jockeys, there is a lot more to them than meets the eye. Sure, while you are watching them ride around the track, whether in person or on television, those who are winning races appear to be doing it effortlessly. All of the finest professional athletes, on the other hand, do. With our list of the top 10 facts you didn’t know about horse jockeys, we’re taking the lid off the world of horse racing.

1. There Is No Maximum Height For A Jockey, But Being Small Helps

Jockeys can be as tall as they like, as long as they are able to maintain the weight requirements for the horses on which they ride. Taller jockeys are more likely to battle with their weight – especially as they become older – despite the fact that there is no upper limit to their height in the sport. Due of this, Donnacha O’Brien, a two-time Irish champion Flat rider who stood near to 6ft (1.82m), decided to resign from the saddle at the age of 21 and join his famed father Aidan and elder brother Joseph in the racehorse training business.

The height of a normal horse jockey ranges from a modest 4ft 10in (1.47m) to a tall 5ft 6in (1.91m) in height (1.67m). As a result, size does important, but even though riders are often little, they must be powerful in order to maintain control over their horses.

2. The Tallest Ever Jockey Was 7ft 7in (2.31m)

Manute Bol, a former NBA player, took his hand at becoming a jockey in a charity race in Indiana, and it went well. Standing at 7ft 7in (2.31m), he holds the record for being the tallest jockey to ever ride under rules. In Australia, the late Stuart Brown, who died at the age of 43 despite being 6ft 3in (1.87m) tall, was still able to win races in the saddle. A horse race between the flags in Wales was won by Patrick Sankey, a 6ft 7in (2.01m) British point-to-point rider who stood at 6ft 7in (2.01m).

This demonstrates the difficulties taller motorcyclists have when compared to their smaller counterparts.

Greater-height jockeys are just at a disadvantage in this sport.

3. There Are No Height Restrictions, But Jockeys Must Weigh A Certain Amount

The conditions of the race affect how much weight a rider should carry on his back. There may be predetermined weights, or, if the horse is competing in a handicap race, the jockey’s weight is decided by the horse’s rating in relation to the other competitors. The horse with the highest rating is the one who bears the most weight. If a jockey weighs in too light after a race, he or she will be disqualified from the competition. However, it is not just themselves who are subjected to a weight check on the scales.

  1. The jockey has to bear the additional weight of all of those equipment.
  2. Amateur and conditional jockeys are entitled to allowances, which they can deduct from their starting weights.
  3. A jumps horse jockey is considered to have “ridden out” his claim after they have won 75 races in the saddle and are no longer able to lift any more weight off their mount’s back.
  4. Although it may appear sexist, female riders in France are permitted to claim a gender allowance, which provides them with a competitive edge over their male counterparts in certain circumstances.

4. Jockey Weights For Flat And Jumps Races Are Different

Flat horse jockeys must be significantly lighter than their counterparts who ride over jumps on their horses. Flat races with no barriers to leap can have a weight structure as low as 8st if no obstacles are encountered (51kg). To be able to make bottom weight, a Flat jockey must weigh around 108lbs (49kg) when the saddle and gear are taken into consideration. No horse should be allowed to carry more than 10st on the Flat (63.5kg). However, in National Hunt horse racing over jumps, 10st is the minimal weight that must be carried.

For National Hunt races, heavier saddle cloths are utilized, typically with lead sheets woven into the fabric of the saddle cloth.

Even with the added weight of their gear, it is still crucial for jumps jockeys to maintain a healthy weight and be in shape. National Hunt jockeys may have lengthier careers than their Flat counterparts since the weights are not as harsh as they are on the Flat. This is provided they avoid injury.

5. Jockeys Get Less Than 10 Percent Of Winnings From A Race

Horse jockeys are not highly paid for directing their mounts in a race after putting their lives and limbs on the line to join them in the competition. When it comes to jumping competitions, which are, after all, more dangerous than flat racing, the rider earns between 8 and 9 percent of the prize money. You are in no better shape than a racehorse trainer, with the owners pocketing the lion’s share of wins, which amounts to around 80% of total winnings. Many people, on the other hand, are generous enough to offer a bonus to the handlers, jockeys, and grooms.

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With placed reward money, regardless of the code, the rider receives a pitiful 3.5 percent of the total prize money.

In addition, expenditures, agent’s fees, and a variety of additional deductions are deducted from horse jockeys’ earnings.

6. A Jockey’s Use Of The Whip Has Strict Rules And Limits

Although this is a contentious subject, horse racing authorities have always taken into consideration the concerns of animal welfare organizations when it comes to a horse jockey use the whip. There are well defined guidelines to obey, and any rider who is discovered to have violated them will face serious repercussions. In a Flat race, a jockey is not permitted to use the synthetic material whip with foam padding and air cushioning more than seven times. A fine and/or a suspension for excessive use will be imposed on them if they do not refrain from doing so.

The maximum number of times you can leap is eight times.

If a horse does not respond to the whip, which is one of the stated goals for employing it, then a rider must evaluate the welfare of their mount, which is a difficult decision to make.

7. Horse Jockeys Aren’t Allowed To Place Bets

Horse jockeys making bets are frowned upon by the racing officials, who consider it to be a serious violation of the regulations. Long-term bans can be imposed, as was the case with Hayley Turner, who was suspended for three months when it was discovered that she was betting while still in possession of a riding license. By comparison, this is a rather lenient sentence. In Australia, any horse jockey who is proven to have violated betting regulations faces a statutory two-year suspension. This serves as a significant deterrence, and the authorities in Australia are not afraid to be even more punitive in their sentencing than they are already.

He put two A$500 wagers on horses that he rode, and therefore backed himself into a corner. Because horse jockeys have inside knowledge, the authorities must be firm in dealing with them.

8. Hundreds Of Jockeys Have Died Or Suffered Life-Changing InjuriesAs A Result Of Horse Racing

Horse racing is a risky sport, and while fatalities are fortunately few and far between, life-altering injuries and deaths can occur on occasion. However, more than 100 riders in North America have died as a consequence of injuries sustained while competing since 1950, despite the fact that all jockeys are supposed to wear protective helmets. According to studies, the fatality rates of jockeys in California have considerably dropped since 1980. However, despite significant efforts in areas where horse racing is popular, the risk to both equine and human athletes will never be completely eliminated.

Recent years have seen a rise in the use of thin body shields, which horse jockeys can claim as part of their equipment, in order to protect the spine while racing.

9. You Won’t See Many Riders Over The Age Of 40

Many horse jockeys retire from the saddle beyond the age of 40, citing the fact that it gets increasingly difficult to maintain a healthy weight as they grow older. Riders that continue to ride above the age of 50 are extremely unusual, however there are notable exceptions. Lester Piggott, the legendary British Flat jockey, has come out of retirement at the age of 54. He was 58 years old when he partnered his final winner in the saddle, similar to American rider Bill Shoemaker. That is out of reach for most jockeys, who often retire in their late 30s or early 40s after a long and fruitful career in the sport.

Frankie Dettori will also achieve that milestone in the near future, but the weighing rooms of the globe are significantly different from the ones in which any of these current professional horse jockeys began their careers.

10. Gender Equality Has A Long Way To Go

The sport of horse racing is overwhelmingly controlled by men. There are significant outliers, of however, and much has been done in recent years to bring female jockeys to the public’s attention. With everything from Lizzie Kelly’s first Grade 1 ride on Tea For Two at Kempton to Bryony Frost’s victory in a prestigious race at the Cheltenham Festival to Holly Doyle’s recent exploits on the Flat in the United Kingdom, there is something for everyone to be inspired by. Many of these major race triumphs, on the other hand, are noteworthy because they represent firsts for female athletes.

With her historic double at Ascot, Doyle made history as the first female Flat horse jockey to win a race on British Champions Day and a Group 1 race in the same day.

When female jockeys are questioned, they frequently state that they feel discriminated against in the industry.

When it comes to equal opportunity, horse racing is a little behind the times. For further information about horse racing, see the following:

Average Jockey Height & Weight (Why Limit?)

Anyone who has ever seen a horse racing will be able to identify jockeys very immediately. Because they are frequently dressed in a noticeable manner, it is not difficult to identify them when they are near horses or on the horse track. However, until you get up close and personal with one, it is hard to determine their exact height and weight. Typically, these characteristics will differ significantly based on the horse breed they ride and the sort of horse racing they participate in. In the majority of cases, however, it is easy to calculate the typical jockey height and weight.

Let’s take a deeper look at what’s going on.

Why Does the Jockey Size Matter?

To be able to compete in horseracing, jockeys must adhere to severe weight restrictions. They can differ from one race to the next, but only within certain parameters. As you may expect, the jockey’s height and weight are closely proportional to the health of the horse. Carrying a heavier jockey, in other words, can have a substantial influence on the animal’s capacity to participate in future races. Prior to every race, the commissioners assess the amount of weight that each horse is capable of carrying.

The math is straightforward.

Average jockey height and weight

Average body size Height Weight
Male 69 inches (1.75 m) 200 pounds (90.7 kg)
Male jockey 62 inches (1.57 m) 113 pounds (51.3 kg)
Female 64 inches (1.63 m) 170 pounds (77 kg)
Female jockey 62 inches (1.57 m) 107 pounds (48.5 kg)
Flat jockey 58 to 66 inches (1.47 – 1.68 m) 108 to 118 pounds (49 – 53.5 kg)

Short jockeys are often more popular than tall jockeys in the professional racehorse industry, despite the fact that there are no height restrictions in the industry. The majority of horse trainers believe that greater weight in a smaller body is healthier for the horse. It is also considered that jockeys who are shorter in stature have better control over their horses during a horserace. As a result, when two jockeys of same weight are available, you will see that trainers frequently choose the shorter of the two riders.

Weight Limit for Jockeys

Weight limitations for jockeys are determined by two considerations. The first factor to consider is the size of the horse and the amount of weight that it can carry on its own. The second one is determined by the type of horserace.

Racing type

The secret to winning flat races is to increase the pace as quickly as possible, making it more practical for shorter and lighter riders to ride. Because of this, they will be more successful than others who are bigger and taller than they. Jump racing, on the other hand, necessitates the use of greater muscle and endurance in order to maintain control of the horse. As a result, jockeys’ weight is just as important as their ability. A taller and heavier jockey is required for this race type, who should weigh between 108 and 118 pounds (49 to 53.5 kg) on average.

For example, the Kentucky Derby has a weight restriction of 119 pounds for the horses competing (54 kg).

In the United Kingdom, jockeys competing in flat races must conform to the 112 pound weight limit, which is the least allowed (51 kg). National Hunt jockeys, on the other hand, will not allow riders weighing more than 140 pounds (64 kg).

Weight control at horse racing

Most racehorses are capable of carrying roughly 118–122 pounds (53–55 kg), although it is vital to include equipment weight in their carrying capacity. The fact that the weight requirements are so rigorous during horseraces is one of the reasons behind this. Nowadays, all jockeys must weigh in both before and after a race, and this is standard practice. It also contains the weight of the equipment. If a jockey’s weight is less than the stipulated requirement, the organizers will give little lead weights, which will be attached to the jockey’s saddle.

The jockeys must also check their weight again after the race is over, as a final precaution.

Height Limits for Jockeys

As previously stated, while weight restrictions are important in horseracing, there are no restrictions on height in the sport. However, this does not imply that you will be able to discover jockeys of all shapes and sizes. On the contrary, the majority of jockeys stand between 58 and 67 inches (1.47 and 1.70 m) tall on average. In both the United States and the United Kingdom, the average height of a man jockey is 69 inches (1.75 m). To put it another way, most professionals are shorter than the typical guy in height.

Aside from that, they are stronger as a result of the better proportions of their bodies.

Unfortunately, in the vast majority of situations, it will have a detrimental impact on their health.

Tall jockeys often weigh more than short riders, which allows them to have the extra stamina required for this sort of horseracing.

Exceptions that confirm the rule

As is typically the case, there are exceptions to the norm, and there are a few successful jockeys who are significantly taller than their competition. Patrick Sankey, who won the point-to-point race in 2019 is an example of someone who has recently achieved success. Considering his vocation, his height of 79 inches (2 m) is completely unexpected and out of the ordinary for someone in his position. Stuart Brown, a professional Australian jockey who died in a car accident, stood 74 inches (1.88 m) tall.

One of the most popular theories is that his weight problems were one of the contributing factors.

After winning the Welsh Grand National, the American became the youngest jockey in history to win the English Grand National, which he did in 1938. This remarkable guy stood at 73 inches (1.85 meters) in height.

Extreme Methods Jockeys Take to Stay Small

In order to maintain the necessary weight and remain competitive in the sport, jockeys must adhere to strict dietary regimens and frequently engage in drastic weight-loss regimens. They run the danger of losing their contract and compensation if they don’t. At times, jockeys must take drastic steps in order to keep their weight within the prescribed limits. It is not uncommon to come across people who employ specialized techniques to limit their growth. The unfortunate reality is that such mistakes frequently result in major health concerns down the road.

Irregular eating

Several elite jockeys choose to forgo meals when they believe their weight will be an issue in a specific horserace. This is especially true in the few days leading up to important and well-known events that provide large sums of money to the winners. The diet will be determined by the jockeys themselves in this situation. Some people will eat less than they normally would, while others will skip the entire meal.

Dehydration through diuretics

In horseracing, diuretics are becoming an increasingly serious concern. Jockeys frequently use tablets to help them expel excess water from their body and, as a result, shed water weight. Unfortunately, diuretics have a negative impact on the amounts of other minerals in the human body. Therefore, repeated usage will have a negative impact on their health over the course of time.


Flipping is one of the most harmful ways of training that jockeys do. They make themselves puke before a weight-loss race in order to reduce weight. The technique of flipping became so popular among jockeys that organizers decided to put so-called flipping bowls in their locker rooms. Despite the fact that these bowls are no longer available, the practice of vomiting a few hours before a race is still common among professional riders.

Other Requirements

Professional jockeys are sometimes likened to freelancers due to the fact that they change horses and clubs on a regular basis. They also have to constantly promote themselves to different groups and horse owners to ensure that they are successful. The physique and stature of the jockey are the most distinguishing qualities of the sport. As sportsmen, they must treat their body with the utmost respect, just like any other professionals in other sports. Despite the fact that the upper body is typically the primary emphasis in this activity, having strong lower body components is essential.

They must also pass a variety of fitness tests and weigh-ins before they can enter into new contracts.

Nowadays, a large number of jockeys choose to complete a comprehensive education. The North American Racing Academy, which is located in the United States, is the greatest option for them because it provides a two-year curriculum. To join, you simply need a high school diploma or equivalent.


Horseracing may be a dangerous sport, both on and off the racetrack. Being a professional jockey is a difficult career that takes a great deal of discipline, endurance, athleticism, and mental fortitude. In addition, jockeys must maintain their weight on a regular basis in order to be under the rigorous weight limitations established by race commissioners. Competitions are not open to jockeys who do not adhere to the weight limits set by the organization. Unfortunately, certain weight-loss strategies might cause serious health concerns if they are not used properly.

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How Much Do Jockeys Weigh?

It is reasonable to assume that jockeys are among the most diminutive athletes in the horse-riding world! When you watch them riding a big horse, it might be difficult to comprehend how these lightweight riders can possible be in command of the situation. But how much do jockeys weigh in the first place? For those who follow horse racing, you will understand how significant the weight of a jockey is! The chore of maintaining the proper weight for a professional jockey is one that requires dedication and perseverance.

What Is A Horse Jockey?

A jockey is a professional horse racing rider who competes in horse races on a regular basis. The majority of jockeys are self-employed riders who are compensated by horse trainers for the privilege of riding their horses in a race. If the horse is entered in the race, the jockey will receive a percentage of the earnings as well as the horse. A top-class rider will earn more money because they will be chosen to ride the very finest horses, which will increase their earning potential. As a result, a winning jockey will be requested to ride more regularly, providing him or her an advantage over less experienced counterparts.

Additionally, weight of the jockey is a significant consideration, and trainers will take this into consideration when hiring a rider.

Why Does A Jockeys Weight Matter?

The world of horse racing is a highly competitive one. In order to ensure a fair race and that the horses are as closely matched as possible, several mechanisms must be in place before the race can begin. One method of accomplishing this is to assign a specific amount of weight to each horse, which must be carried by each horse. The method by which this weight is determined is one of two options available to racing officials. The first technique is a handicap system, which is intended to establish the ideal circumstances for a race in which all competitors are evenly matched.

Therefore, a young, inexperienced horse that has never won a race would carry less weight than an experienced racer that has won several races in the past.

For example, all of the colts in a race that have never finished first will be given the same amount of weight as the other horses.

Both of these approaches are intended to produce a race that is evenly matched throughout, culminating in a thrilling conclusion. Whenever a horse finishes with a large margin of victory, it will be granted a substantially greater weight the following time they compete!

How Are Jockeys Weighed?

The jockey’s weight as well as the horse’s equipment are included in the weight assigned to a horse. All of these items are weighed together, and if the combined weight is too low, lead weights are placed on the saddle. Horse trainers prefer that their horses carry the live weight of a jockey rather than weights when it comes to racing. This implies that they will want the rider to be as near as possible to the ideal weight for the rider’s height. Therefore, the trainer places great emphasis on how much a rider weighs in his or her training program.

During the race, the horse will have to bear the additional weight.

Does The Jockey Height Matter? Average Height Of A Jockey

It is no secret that jockeys are not very tall individuals! The height of a rider, on the other hand, is not taken into consideration when giving handicaps for a race, unlike weight. The fact that jockeys are not very tall can be attributed to the low body weight that they must maintain. It would need a taller jockey to have a dangerously low body weight in order to be within the weight restriction established for the majority of racehorses. If a tall rider were to ride competently during a race at this low weight, he or she would not have the physical power or fitness to do it.

  1. The average Thoroughbred racehorse weighs more than 1000 pounds and has the ability to run at speeds of more than 40 miles per hour.
  2. A rider who is short in stature will have a lower bodyweight than a jockey who is higher in stature, for obvious reasons.
  3. The risk of being too skinny and weak to handle a fit racehorse during a high-pressure race increases as the jockey’s height increases.
  4. A 5’8 guy will weigh around 156 pounds on average, but a shorter 5’2 man would weigh approximately 137 pounds on average.
  5. In most cases, jockeys are between the heights of 4 feet 10 inches and 5 feet 6 inches when it comes to height.

What Is The Average Jockey Weight?

In the United States, the average weight of a jockey is between 109 and 116 pounds. To account for the equipment, horses are often assigned a handicap weight of between 112 and 128 pounds in most competitions. Consequently, after the weight of the saddle and the jockey are placed together, there is typically very little more weight that has to be added on the horse. So, how much smaller does a jockey appear to be in comparison to the typical person? The typical guy in the United States weighs 197 pounds, which is over double the weight of a jockey!

The majority of the time, they consume a diet that is extremely high in protein and low in fat. Steam chambers are also frequently used by jockeys to shed those last few pounds before an important race.


To offer their horse the best potential edge in the race, a rider, as we have learnt, must maintain an extremely low body weight during the race. The majority of jockeys weigh between 109 and 116 pounds, making them one of the world’s tiniest horse-riding athletes, and they compete in the Kentucky Derby. The height of a jockey is not restricted, however smaller jockeys will have an easier time maintaining a lower weight. We’d love to hear your opinions on how much jockeys weigh in the comments section below.

Alternatively, perhaps you have some queries regarding how handicapping in horse racing works.

Find out more about Draft Horse Height.

Kentucky Derby Jockeys: 5 Fast Facts You Need To Know

There are 140 horses in the Kentucky Derby this year. (Getty) Every year, the world’s attention is drawn to a dirt horse track in Louisville, Kentucky, for “the quickest two minutes in sports,” as the phrase goes. Participants in the Kentucky Derby discover the identities of the contenders and ultimate victors, including as California Chrome, American Pharoah, and Nyquist, who will go down in history as the “Run for the Roses.” The Kentucky Derby is broadcast live on ABC and NBC. The jockeys who ride these horses, on the other hand, tend to garner less attention, and many of them aren’t well-known.

However, there is much more to a horse’s performance than merely jogging the day before a big race.

Most are familiar with the course at Churchill Downs, but they put in the extra effort to make sure their horse is ready for the race.

Click here to see a complete list of the jockeys that will be racing in the 2017 Derby.

1. The Average Weight of a Horse Jockey Is 109 to 116 Poundsthe Average Height Is 4’10” to 5’6″

Mario Gutierrez wins the 142nd Kentucky Derby (2016) riding Nyquist. (Getty) The average height and weight of a horse jockey is very important, as these athletes must be nimble and also strong. Mostjockeys weigh somewhere between 105 and 119 pounds. There is no maximum or minimum height for a jockey, but most of them tend to be short because of the weight requirements. Most jockeys only stand about 5’0″ tall, give or take a few inches. Here is a rundown of the heights of the most well known jockeys in the sport.

Mario Gutierrez: 5’3″ (pictured above) (pictured above).

John Velazquez: 5’6″.

Julien Leparoux: 5’5″.

2. A Derby Jockey Makes Between $100,000 – $200,000 Per Year

After riding Orb to victory in the 139th Kentucky Derby, jockey Joel Rosario celebrates with his team. (Getty) Although the majority of horse jockeys do not win Triple Crown races, their pay are often respectable. Although not all jockeys earn six figures, the vast majority earn between $100,000 and $200,000 per year. Jockeys who have their horses finish in the top five in the Derby standings receive a 10 percent share of the total prize money. Participants who finish in the lower half of the field often get little more than a customary “mount fee,” which may be anywhere from $40 for lesser races to $500 for major events like as the Kentucky Derby.

According to Forbes Magazine, many jockeys earn a large sum of money in a single day of racing.

A percentage of the profits (about 25 to 30 percent) is then distributed to the jockey’s agent and valet, who keep the rest.

Irad Ortiz Jr. received $1.88 million in compensation. Victor Espinoza’s net worth is $1.68 million. John Velazquez’s net worth is $1.63 million. Joel Rosario’s net worth is $1.38 million (pictured above).

3. Horse Jockeys Do More Than Just Ride Horses at the Derby

Whitmore will be ridden by Victor Espinoza in the 2016 Kentucky Derby. (Getty) A horse jockey cannot will his horse to have a good day, and the outcome of a race is ultimately determined by the animal, not the jockey or the trainer, in the final analysis. Horse jockeys, on the other hand, do much more than simply saddle a horse on race day. As previously said in this piece, a horse jockey will take the time to get to know his or her horse and will tailor his or her riding style to the horse’s specific skills.

Some horses are better at gathering speed during turns than others, and some horses are better at pushing hard in the final stretch.

“Good jockeys do their homework on their opponents as well.

In the case of three speed horses entering a race, for example, you might want to let them fight it out for the lead position and then surge after they become fatigued,” according to Slate Magazine.

4. Several Jockeys Have Won Multiple Derby Titles

The 131st Preakness Stakes, held at Pimlico Race Course, was won by Javier Castellano. (Getty) Many horse jockeys have set themselves the aim of winning the Kentucky Derby; however, some have been successful in accomplishing this objective more than once. The following is a list of jockeys who have won the “Run for the Roses” more than once in their careers: Bill Hartack has won a total of five Derby championships. Iron Liege in 1957, Venetian Way in 1960, Decidedly in 1962, Northern Dancer in 1964, and Majestic Prince in 1969 were among the victories he earned.

  1. He won the Triple Crown with Lawrin in 1938, the Triple Crown with Whirlaway in 1941, the Triple Crown with Hoop Jr.
  2. Bill Shoemaker has won four consecutive Kentucky Derby races.
  3. Victor Espinoza has won the Derby on three separate occasions.
  4. He also won the Triple Crown with War Emblem in 2002.
  5. Street Sense was his first win in 2007, Mine That Bird was his second win in 2009, and Super Saver was his third win in 2010.
  6. With Real Quiet in 1998, Fusaichi Pegasus in 2000, and Big Brown in 2008, he was victorious on three occasions.
  7. Winning Colors was the last filly to race in the Derby.
  8. also has three victories at Churchill Downs in his career.
  9. Earl Sandewon three Derbys throughout his career.

He won the Triple Crown with Zev in 1923, Flying Ebony in 1925, and Gallant Fox in 1930, all with horses he trained himself. Isaac Murphy was one of the first people to win the race more than once. He won with Buchanan in 1884, Riley in 1890, and Kingman in 1891, and he won with Riley again in 1892.

5. Only 6 Female Jockeys Have Competed in the Kentucky Derby

Untapable, ridden by Rosie Napravnik, takes home the Breeders’ Cup in 2014. (Getty) While watching the Kentucky Derby year after year, you’ve most likely observed that there aren’t many female jockeys in the field this year. Despite the fact that the sport is dominated by male riders, female jockeys have competed in the Derby in the past. On Derby Day, a total of six ladies will be mounting colts for the race. Diane Crump, Patti Cooksey, Andrea Seefeldt, Julie Krone, Rosemary Homeister, and Rosie Napravnik are the members of the group.

Rosie Napravnik is one of the most well-known female jockeys to have come out of that group.

NAPRVNIK was the first female jockey in history to win the Oaks on two occasions, according to Sports Illustrated.

In the same year, Napravnik rode Bob Baffert’s horse Code West to victory in theBelmont Stakes, becoming her the first and only female jockey to have competed in all three races of the Triple Crown.

Following her victory at the Breeders’ Cup in 2014, Napravnik declared her retirement from the sport.

Check out the video below for some extra information about Napravnik’s history and culture.

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