National Jockeys Celebration Day is a national event of remembrance and recognition for Australian riders, held at the commencement of the racing season, on the first weekend in August each year and Tasmania hosts its event at Ladbrokes Park Elwick in Hobart on Sunday.
A special ceremony will take place in the mounting yard at Elwick before the horses parade prior to race eight, and the rider of the number one saddlecloth in races five and eight will wear the National Jockey Trust silks.
All jockeys will assemble and line up in their silks before they are due to mount up prior to race eight.
National Jockeys Celebration Day celebrates the achievements of former and current jockeys, commemorates those who have lost their lives and raises awareness and funds for the National Jockeys’ Trust.
The principal purpose of the National Jockeys Trust is to provide support for former and current jockeys, and their families who are in necessitous circumstances resulting from serious injury, illness, or death of a jockey.
The National Jockeys Trust has provided assistance to over 480 jockeys and the families of jockeys who have been killed, that assistance has now exceeded $4.5 million.
National Jockeys Celebration Day activities:
- National Jockeys Celebration Day Handicap
- Minute Silence
- Blessing of the Track
There are 850 jockeys registered in Australia and here are some statistics that support the need for the NJT:
- 890 Australian jockeys have been killed in race falls since 1847
- Approximately 200 riders are injured each year on Australian racetracks
- Combined with trackwork, we have nearly 500 falls annually.
- 89% of jockeys will have a fall that requires medical assistance
- 9% have fallen more than 20 times
- Each year 40% of jockeys will have a fall that will prevent them from riding for an average of 5 weeks.
- Approx. 5% of these falls would be termed career-ending injuries.
- Over 50% of Australian jockeys earn less than $60,000 per year (before expenses)