How Much Do Jockeys Receive for Winning the Kentucky Derby

Riding horses is a dangerous job. The horses that run in the Kentucky Derby are incredibly powerful animals, and while they are highly trained, they are still animals – and animals can be unpredictable from time to time. Many jockeys throughout racing history have been injured, and even killed, during races. To be sure, riding horses for a living is not a job for the faint of heart.

So how large are the financial rewards for riding a horse to victory in a huge race like the Kentucky Derby? Well, for winning the 2015 Kentucky Derby aboard American Pharoah, jockey Victor Espinoza is reported to have taken home $86,800 before taxes. While there is nothing wrong with that sum, it is important to remember that Espinoza won the biggest title in the sport to claim that payday. For the vast majority of races, jockeys will earn far less than that total.

Jockey Kentucky Derby 2016

As a general rule, jockeys earn 10% of the total purse for a win, with lesser percentages for other finishes. Since the Kentucky Derby has one of the largest purses in the sport, it is certainly a race that every jockey would like to claim. However, most jockeys will never have the fortune to even ride in the Kentucky Derby – let alone have the chance to taste victory. Sadly, most jockeys have to scratch out a living on small paychecks despite engaging in such a dangerous and difficult profession. Hopefully, as the sport of horse racing continues to grow and prosper, jockeys will be able to take home an ever-increasing piece of the pie.

April 5, 2016 by : Posted in 2016 No Comments

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