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Deborah Ann Butler

In this paper I ask how it is that women, despite being a significant part of the workforce in horseracing, are still only a minority of professional jockeys. I explore the relationship between social practices and the gender based inequalities and use Bourdieu’s concepts of field, capital and habitus to analyze its classed and gendered nature. I draw on an ethnographic study of a racing yard, focusing particularly on the experiences of Anne Dudley, one of my female interviewees, who, unusually, had ridden as a jockey. She typifies the ways in which women’s career trajectories within the racing field are shaped by access to physical and social capital. I argue that habitus can be used to illustrate how redirection(s) in practices or ideas are brought about within a patriarchal, masculine field of power.

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Lewis King, Sarah Jane Cullen, Jean McArdle, Adrian McGoldrick, Jennifer Pugh, Giles Warrington, and Ciara Losty

sport of horseracing, in particular, the athletes aboard the thoroughbred racehorse, jockeys. Despite the fact the sport has been labeled as high risk and demanding ( Warrington et al., 2009 ), there is a dearth of literature examining the stressors experienced by jockeys. Moreover, few sports involve

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Lewis King, SarahJane Cullen, Jean McArdle, Adrian McGoldrick, Jennifer Pugh, Giles Warrington, and Ciara Losty

ensure confidentiality and anonymity of female participants due to the low number of female jockeys competing in Ireland. Male and female jockeys experience the same racing demands and compete against one another in the sport of horseracing. Participants were on average 28 years old ( SD  = 2.9) and had

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Emily Stadder and Michael L. Naraine

“Casinos,” “slots,” “horseracing,” and “sports betting.” These words are just a few that will evoke images of the gaming and gambling industry. A global phenomenon, this industry is continuing to grow and expand. In 2015, the gross gaming yield worldwide was measured at $430 billion U.S. and

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George Wilson, Jerry Hill, Daniel Martin, James P. Morton, and Graeme L. Close

make weight all year round ( Martin et al., 2017 ; Wilson et al., 2014 ). The weight allowance given to apprentices in GB flat horseracing is allocated based upon the number of winning rides for each jockey, with 7 lb (3.2 kg), 5 lb (2.3 kg), and 3 lb (1.4 kg) being allowed until he/she has ridden 20

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Bryan E. Denham

This article addresses how The New York Times, through an investigative series on drug use and catastrophic breakdowns in U.S. horse racing, influenced policy initiatives across a 6-month period. Beginning with the March 25, 2012, exposé “Mangled Horses, Maimed Jockeys,” the article analyzes how the newspaper helped define policy conversations at both the state and national levels. The article also addresses how the Interstate Horseracing Improvement Act of 2011, a fledgling piece of legislation, became what Kingdon described as a “solution in search of a problem” and thus a political lever in policy deliberations. Long recognized for its capacity to influence the content of other news outlets, the article concludes, The New York Times can also play an important role in legislative arenas, informing lawmakers of salient issues, as well as opportunities for substantive and symbolic policy actions.

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Jan M. Moore, Anna F. Timperio, David A. Crawford, Cate M. Burns, and David Cameron-Smith

Jockeys are required to maintain very low body weight and precise weight control during competition. This study examined the weight loss and weight management strategies of professional horseracing jockeys in the state of Victoria, Australia. An anonymous, self-completed questionnaire was administered (55% response rate, n=116). Almost half (43%) reported that maintaining riding weight was difficult or very difficult, with 75% routinely skipping meals. In preparation for racing, 60% reported that they typically required additional weight loss, with 81% restricting food intake in the 24 hours prior to racing. Additionally, sauna-induced sweating (29%) and diuretics (22%) were frequently employed to further aid in weight loss prior to racing. These rapid weight loss methods did not differ between the 51% of jockeys who followed a weight management plan compared to those who did not. The impact of these extreme weight loss practices on riding performance and health remains unknown.

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SarahJane Cullen, Eimear Dolan, Kate O Brien, Adrian McGoldrick, and Giles Warrington

Balance and anaerobic performance are key attributes related to horse-racing performance, but research on the impact of making weight for racing on these parameters remains unknown. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of rapid weight loss in preparation for racing on balance and anaerobic performance in a group of jockeys.


Twelve apprentice male jockeys and 12 age- and gender-matched controls completed 2 trials separated by 48 h. In both trials, body mass, hydration status, balance, and anaerobic performance were assessed. Between the trials, the jockeys reduced body mass by 4% using weight-loss methods typically adopted in preparation for racing, while controls maintained body mass through typical daily dietary and physical activity habits.


Apprentice jockeys decreased mean body mass by 4.2% ± 0.3% (P < .001) with a subsequent increase in dehydration (P < .001). The controls maintained body mass and a euhydrated state. No differences in balance, on the left or right side, or in peak power, mean power, or fatigue index were reported between the trials in either group.


Results from this study indicate that a 4% reduction in body mass in 48 h through the typical methods employed for racing, in association with an increase in dehydration, resulted in no impairments in balance or anaerobic performance. Further research is required to evaluate performance in a sport-specific setting and to investigate the specific physiological mechanisms involved.

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Mark A. Leydon and Clare Wall

The purpose of this study was to determine the nutritional status, eating behaviors, and body composition of 20 jockeys working in the New Zealand Racing Industry. Seven-day weighed food records showed the mean daily energy intake for male and female jockeys was 6769 ± 1339 kJ and 6213 ± 1797 kJ, respectively. Energy and carbohydrate intakes were below the recommendations for athletes, and the jockeys did not meet the RDI for a number of micronu-trients. Of the jockeys, 67% used a variety of methods to "make weight". including: diuretics, saunas, hot baths, exercise, and the restriction of food and fluids. A number of jockeys (20%) showed signs of disordered eating. Forty-four percent of jockeys were classified as osteopenic, and a number of factors may have contributed to this outcome, namely: reduced calcium intake, delayed menarche (14.5 years) in female jockeys, alcohol intake, and smoking. Percent body fat of male and female jockeys was 11.7 ± 2.9 and 23.6 ± 3.8, respectively. Current weight restrictions imposed on jockeys by the horseracing industry impacts on their nutritional status, which may compromise their sporting performance and both their short- and long-term health.

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Tanya McGuane, Stephen Shannon, Lee-Ann Sharp, Martin Dempster, and Gavin Breslin

( Burke, 2006 ; The British Horseracing Authority, 2015 ; The Turf Club of Ireland, 2007 ) assign more-successful horses to carry heavier jockeys in an attempt to improve competitive fairness. The minimum competition weight requirement for jockeys riding in flat races is 7 stones 12 pounds (45.21 kg