NSW Jockeys propose to limit international riders

If a jockey is a top-three rider in an international metropolitan premiership they would also qualify to ride in NSW, but the proposal is they shouldn’t be able to stay for more than six months.

“With 200 jockeys and apprentices currently licensed, they state that there is no shortage of riders,” the proposal obtained by the Herald says.

“The association states that some visiting jockeys will stay for a few months and reap the rewards of the high levels of prizemoney and conditions in our state but, in reality, only the high-profile riders bring promotion to our industry.

“They take back with them fees and prizemoney that could be earnt by our NSW jockeys, some of whom leave the industry early due to reduced opportunities.

“The association has no issue with international riders coming to NSW for major races and carnivals, but recommends criteria be introduced for other times as is the case in many other racing countries.”

Marquand won more than $4.4 million in prizemoney during his stay earlier in the year, including winning the $2 million Inglis Millenium on Prime Star, and broadened awareness of Australian racing.

The NSWJA has also taken aim at international apprentices who have been successful when they have come to Australia. They have proposed an apprentice would need to have ridden 80 wins or 20 metropolitan wins to ride in NSW and then only on a short-term basis. Otherwise, they want the NSW apprentice program restricted to Australian residents.

Trainers are struggling to find apprentices and the past three Sydney apprentice titles have been won by Englishwoman Rachel King and Robbie Dolan, who came from Ireland looking for an opportunity.

The leading apprentice in the state this season is another Irish export, Tom Sherry.

“We would also like to discuss some conceptual planning for the advancement of NSW Apprentice Jockeys and a Future Academy,” the jockeys added in their proposal.


Racing NSW said it is continuing a consultation period with the jockeys and trainers about the matter.

Meanwhile, the Australian Turf Club is finalising protocols to have more members of the public at Saturday’s Randwick meeting and expect to make an announcement about how many punters will be allowed on course on Thursday.

In other news, the TAB put tickets on sale to own a slot in the $1.3 million Kosciuszko on Wednesday.

There are 14 slots up for grabs with the winners able to negotiate with the owners of country gallopers to run in the race, which is on Everest day at Randwick on October 17.

Racing writer for The Sydney Morning Herald

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