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The Question: How important is a jockey to a horse?

Oct. 08, 1956
Oct. 08, 1956

Table of Contents
Oct. 8, 1956

The Great Drama: Last Act
Preview
Events & Discoveries
The Wonderful World Of Sport
Football: Second Week
Jack Kramer
The Outdoor Week
Rolling Rock
Footloose Sportsman
The One-Shot Killer
19th Hole: The Readers Take Over
Mr. Caper
Pat On The Back

The Question: How important is a jockey to a horse?

MRS. C. V. WHITNEY
Old Westbury, N.Y.
As important as Bobby Bragan is to the Pirates. Bobby took the same kids from last to first place—for a while—in the National League. A good jockey can perform a like miracle. He is as important to his horse as a conductor to an orchestra, because a horse race is a symphony in motion.

This is an article from the Oct. 8, 1956 issue

MRS. E. BARRY RYAN
Lexington, Ky.
You may be sure of a foal's blood strain; you spend lots of time with him—his feed, the vet, his training, etc. Now he's 2 years old and ready—you hope-and you get him to the post. What happens? Everything depends on a little bitty man, with a little bitty cap and a size two shoe.

CHARLES H. WACKER
Chicago manufacturer
For a good horse to put in a good performance a good jockey is essential. But a good jockey can't do much for a poor horse. The only reason Native Dancer was beaten at the Kentucky Derby was because of a scant miscalculation by a jockey who is one of the greatest riders.

JOSEPHINE ABERCROMBIE ROBINSON
Lexington, Ky.
There's a tendency for stables to depend on "name" jockeys, but in a mile-and-a-half race some of the horses are going to break. The best name jockey in the world can't do anything about it. I've been a rider in horse shows. There it's different. A rider means 50% to 60% to his mount.

JIMMY KILROE
Official handicapper
Over a long pull, a good rider can win races that poor riders will lose. A poor rider can get the best horse licked by mistakes in judgment. Race horses run between 35 and 40 miles an hour. Riders have to make instant decisions, and the better riders make fewer mistakes.

MAX HIRSCH
Trainer for King Ranch and other stables
Let's say that the jockey has got to have the horse. With a really great horse—the greatest—and a number of good jockeys to choose from, I'd say that the jockey amounts to about 25% of the race, but no more. Because he has equally good jockeys running against him.

JOHN V. BOUVIER III
Easthampton, N.Y. Stockbroker
In the average horse race a good jockey is worth about 75% of the race and the horse 25%. However, when you have great horses like Citation, Whirlaway, Native Dancer and Man o' War, it's usually the other way round. But even great horses can miss, if the jockey has a temporary lapse.

BELMONT EVANS
Baltimore, Md. Horse Trainer
My opinion may raise some eyebrows, but I sincerely believe that a jockey is about 5% of the horse after the trainer is through with him, and the horse can really run. That kind of horse makes a jockey, even an Arcaro. Any jockey who can hang on can win with Swaps or Nashua.

MRS. ARDEN J. BRAKE
Miami, Fla. Owner, racing stable
Not too important. A jockey has to have good judgment in a tight race but that's all. Everything else being equal, a good jockey can move a horse up by a head in a tight race, but he can't move him up a full length. Give me the good horse in a race and you can have your pick of jockeys.

TEN PHOTOS

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