You may be a huge horse lover, you have books and a horse sculpture, you follow all the excitement of horse racing – Royal Ascot, Cheltenham Gold Cup and the Grand National – you or even your children may be watching those jockeys and thinking – that looks like great fun how do I get to do that?
You need to start young to make it – Most jockeys have started to pursue their career from the age of 16. Of course, one of the main things that you will need to make it as a jockey is to be a certain height and weight, so many people are not suitable purely on these grounds, but generally by the age of 16 to 17 you will have a good idea if you will be or not.
The training is quite intense – The initial course is a residential course that can last around a year, which is then followed by a two-year apprenticeship. When this is complete, you can then apply for a license to ride against other jockeys professionally.
Physical Fitness is important – It is important to be physically fit as well as meeting the height and weight criteria – you do not need to have prior knowledge of riding a horse though. Although there is not top age limit for jockeys, by the age of 50 most will have retired, and moved onto another job withing racing, where they can use the skills and knowledge they have built up over their years as a jockey to help younger ones.