Woottons Riding Ideas: Great Australian Jockeys Reflections on How to Work and Win., Daily Racing Form, 1921-05-04


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WOOTTONS RIDING IDEAS Great Australian Jockeys Reflections on How to Work and Win Here arc some reflections on raeing ways and race riding from Frank Wootton the Australian jockey still at work on the English courses Wootton was contemporary with Maher some ten years ago and a topnotcher at that time Weight told and lie retired but for the past two years lias returned to riding in hurdle races and steeple ¬ chases and is second on the list of crosscountry jockeys of the year Here is his notion of riding races and their winners from si recent number of London TitKits TitKitsA A question I am often asked is Do you think R really clever jockey is born or made madeIf If a young man does not take to riding and does not possess a few natural gifts which will enable him to ride well he would do better to make up his mind to ride in a bus and not on the back of a horse On tlie other hand if he has a natural aptitude and a genuine liking for racing he should do well with practice and ex ¬ perience perienceHe He must ride with his head and must also have plenty of courage and dash The jockey who takes advantage of every chance that comes his way in a race and does not merely ride in the Iiellforleather style will win more races than his less brainy brother for the simple reason that the jockey who rides with his head knows exactly what his own horse is doing and has a shrewd notion of what the other horses in the race are doing doingJockeys Jockeys are often blamed by critics for not getting home first when the fault rests entirely with the horse Fifty yards from the winning post si jockeys mount may appear to be doddling home But suddenly something dashes up full of running gets the leader sprawling and after a sharp struggle instead of winning by several lengths as critics declare he ought to have done the apparently easily winning horse gets pipped by a neck and his jockey is blamed for riding a weak finish finishMore More often than not he has done nothing of the kind After all a jockey cannot pass the post x without his horse and if his mount is not of the Murageous kind what looked from the stands like being an easy victory is turned into a vexatious defeat before you can say Tack Robinson The successful jockey studies his mounts He does not look upon them as galloping machines There is a temperamental side to the character of a thoroughbredI can recall quite a number of cases in which my mounts have chucked up the racing business for the time being because early on in a race they have been bumped by another horse or interfered with in some way or another As a result when going really well they have become soured and dropped out of the race altogether altogetherAgain Again some horses invariably show their best form in the spring while others prefer the summer or autumn as the case may be Other horses only give of their best on certain courses left or right handed uphill or downhill severe or easy in light or heavy going or when ridden by a strong jockey rather than by a mere boy boyI I am sometimes asked whether a jockeys life is one to be recommended for a boy with the necessary qualifications To this I invariably reply with an emphatic Yes tempered by a very big If If he lias the particular qualities I have mentioned if he is prepared to exercise self denial if he will run straight if he will realize that there is always something fresh for him to learn if he is able to avoid acquiring a swollen head in times of success Mf he will study horses in much the same way as a barrister studies the law an actor or actress the stage and so on then I Jim of opinion that the boy who devotes his working life to acquiring the art of raceriding will never have cause to regret his decision decisionAnd And he may also acquire more money than lie Would in another profession

Persistent Link: https://drf.uky.edu/catalog/1920s/drf1921050401/drf1921050401_8_1
Local Identifier: drf1921050401_8_1
Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800