04 Nov 1999 Pre-2014 Releases

Seminar Attendance to Become Condition of a Jockey’s Licence to Ride

Published: 4 November 1999

The Jockey Club will be introducing mandatory jockeys’ seminars in the year 2000. Starting next spring, there will be three seminars for Flat jockeys and then two more for National Hunt jockeys during the winter. The seminars will be attended by all professional riders licensed by the Jockey Club, except 7lb claimers who will attend Continuation Training Courses at the British Racing School. The seminars will concentrate on the race riding rules that most regularly affect jockeys, such as interference, use of the whip and horses not running on their merits. Chief Medical Adviser, Dr Michael Turner, will also be present at each seminar together with the Jockey Club’s Senior Course Inspector, Richard Linley.

Malcolm Wallace, the Jockey Club’s Director of Regulation, said: “Every year jockeys get suspended and lose their livelihood unnecessarily because they may not fully understand the rules and how they are implemented. We very much hope that these seminars will prevent that in the future. We consider that time spent at a seminar will save days, maybe weeks, of jockeys’ suspensions.”

Malcolm Wallace continued: “In 1998 we held three jockeys’ seminars on a voluntary basis, however, of the five hundred jockeys licensed at the time only a total of 28 attended. After consultation with the Jockeys’ Association, it has been agreed that from next year all riders applying for a professional jockey’s licence will give an undertaking to attend a seminar. The Jockey Club considers this to be in the best interests of jockeys in particular and racing in general.”

Following consultation with the Jockeys’ Association, dates and venues have been selected with the aim of causing the jockeys as little inconvenience as possible. The relevant information will also be published by the National Trainers’ Federation so that trainers will be aware of the details and the requirement for all jockeys to attend. It is hoped that most jockeys will be able to ride out prior to attending the seminars.

Michael Caulfield, Executive Manager of the Jockeys’ Association of GB, added:
“I encourage jockeys to look upon this initiative as a positive development. A considerable amount of thought has gone into the selection of dates and venues. We want to make it as easy as possible for jockeys, so that they can all gain the full benefit of attending. I’m sure that the seminars will provide a good forum for discussion and will also contribute to riders avoiding unnecessary suspensions in the future, which must be in everyone’s interests.”

Notes for Editors:
The first three dates for the seminars will be: Wednesday 5th April – Newbury, Thursday 20th April – Newmarket, Tuesday 16th May – York.