I've come across a few webpages about jockeys, in the US and maybe
England, vomiting to lose weight, or using stringent dieting.
I thought that the jockey and his saddle were weighed before the race,
and if any pair of them was below some fixed weight, weights were put in
bags attached to the saddle to make the load on each horse the same.
So that the horses were compared fairly and no horse had an advantage
because its jockey or saddle weighed less than some other horse's.
And that this was a meaning of, or even the original meaning of,
Am I totally wrong? If this used to be the system, when did they
switch to having jockeys starve themselves so they could weigh less than
other jockeys? Besides the health question, it doesn't seem like a
fair comparison of the horses.
Underweight is rare. Overweight is very easy given the maximum of 116
pounds. I'd have to ride at least two horses
This explains a lot.
But there is no mention of adding weight to anyone.
Under my system, there's no reason for jockeys to starve, sweat, or
purge, because if they lose weight it just gets added as a steel weight.
But so far, no evidence they've ever used my system, even though I doubt
that I made it up out of nothing.
I googled some more, using Why do they weight jockeys and
found some evidence that part of what I said is true Best Answer, to
why is the jockey weighed after the race:
" To make sure the horse carried its assigned weight during the race and
wasnt tampered with between weigh in and the finish line* The saddles
have weights put in them to make up the difference in jockey weight and
the weight assigned to the horse- they are checking these weights havent
been tampered with.
Source(s): been to the races lol
Michelle S · 6 years ago
To make the race fair, the horses are all assigned weights. For
instance, all Kentucky Derby colts must carry 126 pounds. If one horse
gets to carry much less weight, they have an advantage. So the jockeys
weigh in with all their equipment before the race and right after the
race to make sure the jockey was at the proper weight for the entire
race. In the old days, the saddle pads had pockets on the sides where
they'd put actual weights in the pockets to make the right weight...
riders would reach down during the race, pull out the weight and throw
them on the ground so their horse was carrying less! Nowadays, the pads
themselves are weighted so you can't do that. But to be fair, they want
to weigh the jockeys just to make sure no crafty jock ditched some
weight along the way!
kmnmiamisax · 6 years ago "
So if these two people are right, once the jockey is below 119 (126
minus the 7 pounds of gear) why bother losing weight!
And if they have to kill themselves to get to 119, just raise the 126
limit and put more weight in the saddles of those who do weigh that
I'm sure the horses can carry a few more pounds. After all, full size
men who weight 200 pounds ride those horses or similar ones.
This looks like a problem of the racing business's making.
This comment, centered around Australia, NZ, and the UK, goes further
This I didn't know, but it makes sense. That's the same meaning
handicap is used with in golf**.
That woudl make for an exciting race, when each horse has a chance to
finish at the same time.
How common are handicap raices? They probably aren't for big money.
I've been saying for years that it's a shame handicapped people stopped
using a word which meant they would finish but would take a little
longer (which is true for most of them, for more and more actually), and
now seem to prefer disabled, which to me means, Once able, then
disabled, now unable. can't do it. A terrible choice of words.
Back to the topic. This might explain it: "As for jockeys - different
horses and different races will require different weights. It's in their
best interest to be as small as possible to get the most potential
rides, since a trainer isn't likely to put a jockey up who is carrying
more weight than is required. So you and your saddle weigh 115 lb. The
first race requires your mount to carry 120 lbs - you get weights
totalling 2 1/2 lbs for each side of your saddle. For the next race your
mount has to carry 127 lbs - so you get different weights." So if you
and the saddle weighed 124, you could run the second race with 3 lbs
added, but even with no weight added, you'd be 4 pounds heaviier than
required for the 120 race, and you wouldn't get hired for that.
**(Well, at least they talk that way in golf. But if someone with a
handicap of 4 strokes plays a 75, 3 over par, and a guy with a handicap
of 2 plays a 74, 2 over par, I've never heard of them subtracting the
handicaps and declaring the first one the winner. And it certainly
doesn't work that way in tournaments either.
So if one jockey comes in at 160, they just add weight to the others?
As long as the maximum is ridiculously low, there will be purging.
Maybe a little less for a few, but you'll never see a pot bellied jockey.
Nor did I finf it, but it seems like a way to make thing even.
Logical, but won't happen. If you add 5 or 10 pounds to the max, race
times won't be the same, records cannot be compared, etc. Trivial to
us, major to the horsie set.
Just like comparing baseball stats with pre-steroid records.
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