Jockey Jason Taylor rides Zeeluck to victory at Ipswich racetrack. He recently suffered serious injuries at the start of a race. Picture: Claire Power
Jockey Jason Taylor rides Zeeluck to victory at Ipswich racetrack. He recently suffered serious injuries at the start of a race. Picture: Claire Power

Give jockeys a fair go: Their life can depend on it


Anthony Breeze

HOW dangerous and pressurised being a jockey can be has been highlighted again.

For the men or women who sit on horses guiding them around the track, one thought could be what an easy job that would be, getting paid race after race to ride a horse for a living.

However, one bad ride and the public is quick to jump all over the jockey for losing some of their hard earned cash.

Have you considered that every time they jump on to a horse they are putting their lives at risk?

One fall could severely injure them or take their life.

The sport is very dangerous and that's why tough penalties are handed out if jockeys put other riders' lives at risk during a race.

Since the beginning of horse racing in Australia, a staggering 950 jockeys have lost their lives due to falls on the track.

It nearly became 951 when current jockey Jason Taylor was severely injured recently.

The incident occurred at the barriers when his mount reared in the air and crushed him into the ground before lashing out and kicking him in the head. Taylor suffered potential life-threatening injuries, including nine broken ribs, a punctured lung and a badly gashed face.

Thankfully, he is recovering well and has no thoughts of retiring from the sport he loves.

Just remember next time you are berating a jockey that they are putting their lives on the line every time they go onto the track to win you a quick buck.

Meticulous Diggers women

THE Ipswich Diggers under-19 girls team is tackling their inaugural pre-season before stepping out into the newly QRL formed competition.

It is suffice to say that many of the girls have never trained so hard in their life.

The team is leaving no stone unturned with some gruelling training sessions under the eye of coach Darryl Squires.

Squires is a very astute coach who loves to cross his t's and dot his i's. He has a meticulous and well thought out way on how to get the best out of a player.

All players are on a private group chat where they must record all homework (extra training) that Squires has set for them before the next training session.

The girls have been at it now for over five weeks and early signs coming out of the team are that they are willing to learn and put the extra work in needed to get to the top of their game.

The side will shake off some cobwebs on Saturday when they take on Souths Logan at Goodna at 4pm in their first trial for the season.

Quick thoughts

WINNERS: 1. Remember the name Oliver Hoare as he might just get us a medal on the track at this year's Olympics. He has run a sensational time overseas in the 1500m indoors, clocking a staggering 3.32.35.

2. Ben Simmons has been in great form for the Philadelphia 76ers this year. He exploded last Tuesday scoring a record for an Aussie in the NBA by recording 42 points.

3. Ash Barty might have lost her quarter-final match but she still showed everyone that she is a champion with a classy press conference. Another Aussie tennis player could take some tips on how to lose gracefully.

4. Steve Smith went back to state cricket and smashed a one day century for NSW. This man is simply unbelievable.

LOSERS: 1. Third umpires in cricket are normally neutral but in this COVID world we live in, we have had to use hometown officials. Two disgraceful decisions by the third official in India has shown why they must remain neutral.

2. All the whinging tennis players who blamed COVID as soon as they were knocked out. Just remember you didn't have to come.

3. The four Canberra Raiders junior players who had their contracts torn up by Ricky Stuart. You want to misbehave then suffer the consequences.

Sporting birthdays February 18

1. 1966: Phil De Freitas - English cricket fast bowler who played 44 Tests taking 140 wickets. De Freitas also played 103 ODI's.

2. 1967: Roberto Baggio - Italian soccer player who was crowned FIFA World Player of the Year in 1993.

On this day

1. 1932: Norwegian Sonja Henie wins her sixth straight world women's figure skating title.

2. 1969: Doug Walters scores second innings century after a fabulous double century (242) in the first innings.

3. 1977: West Indian cricketers Joel Garner (4/130) and Colin Croft (3/85) make their Test debuts.

4. 1981: A 20 year-old Wayne Gretzky becomes the first player in NHL history to score five career hat-tricks before the age of 21.

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