With minimum weights rising a kilogram across Victoria from January first next year we take a look at the positives it will offer jockeys.
It’s true that not all riders will get a great deal of benefit and some say they are losing a competitive advantage however the general consensus is that this is a positive step.
Brad Rawiller is one jockey who is anxiously anticipating 2012 and feels the extra kilo will make things a lot more comfortable.
“Each part of the year is different for me, but with the extra kilo, it’s going to be massive for me,” Rawiller said.
As it stands Rawiller is in a constant battle with the scales, often still cutting down right up until the start of a race meeting.
He said not only does this potentially give him a greater number of rides, it also makes the entire industry a more attractive prospect.
“Every generation coming through is taller and bigger. For our industry, we want young people thinking, ‘This is an industry I want to be a part of’,” he said.
“It’s a commonsense decision on a whole number of areas.”
Rawiller was originally told he was too big to be a jockey but now days he’s usually giving away height to others in the jockeys room.
Another who will benefit from the rise is Victoria’s leading jockey Luke Nolen.
His resting weight sits somewhere between 56 and 57kgs meaning he’s now that little bit closer to the minimum.
He says no time will it be more beneficial than the start of the new year.
“Your weight always seems to go up in this, the silly season,” he said.
“In the silly season, you enjoy most of the activities that most people do, but you just can’t indulge. You just have to show restraint.”
Indeed there are many in the same boat as Rawiller and Nolen but don’t expect any massive changes.
The jockeys generally agree that while the increase may ease some of the burden the general routines of being a jockey will remain largely unchanged.
The New weight scale for Victoria from January 1st 2012 is listed below.
MINIMUM RIDING WEIGHTS
Caulfield and Melbourne Cups 50kg
All other Group 1 races 52kg
Group 2 races 53kg
All other races (incl Group 3 and Listed) 54kg
Night and Non-TAB meetings 55kg
MINIMUM TOPWEIGHT AT DECLARATION OF WEIGHTS
All Group 1 races
(incl Caulfield and Melbourne Cups) 58kg
All other Group races and all 2yo Races 59kg
All other races 60kg
MINIMUM TOPWEIGHT AT DECLARATION OF ACCEPTANCES
All races 58kg