2012 Champion Jockey Joseph O’Brien joined Ger Gilroy and Johnny Ward on this week’s Friday Night Racing to talk about his career as jockey and trainer.
The 25-year-old from the legendary O’Brien racing family spoke about the difficult and dangerous weight-cutting process in the sport.
O'Brien says he never complained about weight-cutting because he felt he was in such a privileged position.
“I’d feel bad complaining about struggling with my weight because of the privileged position I’m in”
The 2012 '2000 Guineas' winner compared and contrasted the weight-cutting process in mma and boxing to that of a jockey.
He says the major challenge is cutting the weight on the day of the race, keep the body in a deprived state.
Traditionally in boxing and mma the weigh-in takes place 24 hours before the contest.
“I suppose the main difference with mma and boxing is that they have their weigh-in maybe 24 hours before they fight. So, they can be a stone, maybe ten or 12lbs heavier – whatever the case may be, heavier when they actually have to perform,' said O'Brien.
Jockey's have to maintain the same weight until 10 minutes prior the finish. The Jockeys are then re-weighed by officials.
“The jockey has to weigh back in afterwards as well. So, they make the weight a half hour before the race, and then ten minutes after the race they have to be the same weight.
Joseph O'Brien says the fact the jockey has to perform at such a depleted state remains the most concerning part of the process for jockeys.
“You actually have to perform at your bare minimum, so that’s probably the most dangerous part of it."
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