NSWJA March 2018 Newsletter


President: Kerrin McEvoy

Chief Executive: Tony Crisafi

Executive Member: Bob Whyburn


Metropolitan: Hugh Bowman, Brenton Avdulla, Tye Angland

Provincial: Andrew Gibbons, Grant Buckley

Hunter & North West: Leanne Henry

Southern District: Brad Clark

South East: Adrian Layt

Central & West: Tiffany Jeffries

Mid North Coast: Peter Graham

Northern Rivers: Matthew Paget

Welfare Officer: Neil Paine

Contact Tony Crisafi 0430 211 098 email: tony@nswjockeys.org

Withholding Tax

Unfortunately, many jockeys run into tax problems during their career for a number of reasons. The attached form will help you manage your tax. Please print the form, sign and send to either tony@nswjockeys.org ORsruxton@racingnsw.com.au

We would recommend 20% tax withheld but please speak to your accountant if in doubt.

Can I please ask senior riders to speak to apprentices and stress the importance of completing this form and having their tax in order from the very outset!

Plastic Rails

The strategy of Racing NSW must prioritise health and safety of participants. Both Kerrin McEvoy and I have OH&S as our number one priority and plastic rails is on top of that list!


74% of NSW races are on tracks with a plastic rail.

99% of Victorian races are on plastic.

Less than half of NSW 112 tracks have a plastic rail

More than 40 NSW tracks have none or some outside rail.

No track in NSW has been fitted out with a plastic rail for over two years.

Due to the urgings of the NSWJA, three tracks will have plastic installed over the next two months: Warren; Moree & Corowa

This will free up kilometres of aluminium rail that can be used for outside rail on tracks that need.

Racing NSW will soon be releasing a Strategic Plan which gives the industry direction for the next three years. The NSWJA will be strongly recommending Racing NSW to set funds aside to install new plastic rails at three tracks each year.

Betting on Thoroughbreds

Just a reminder that betting on any race, anywhere is NOT ALLOWED!

The Australian Jockeys Association canvassed stewards to differentiate between betting on your horse and betting on another horse, in terms of penalty.

The Conference of Stewards held recently deemed that there be NO DIFFERENTIATION.

That is the penalty is the same for having $100 on your horse or betting $20,000 on another horse in the same race.

AR 83 (c) “Every jockey or apprentice may be penalised: (c) If he bet, or facilitates the making of, or has any interest in a bet on any race or contingency relating to thoroughbred racing, or if he be present in the betting ring during any race meeting”

The only way to avoid breaching this rule is:


Workers Comp + Top Up =

NSW legislation provides the following benefits to jockeys on workers compensation:

* Weekly benefits capped at $2101.70(min $736.72)

Weeks 1-13 . 95% Pre-Injury Average Weekly Earnings (PIAWE)

Weeks 14-130 . 80% of PIAWE

The jockeys’ top-up insurance with Gow Gates will cover the balance of you PIAWE up to $500 p/w

Eg 1 If your PIAWE is $2000pw you will receive $1900 from WC + $100 from the top-up

Eg 2 If your PIAWE is $4000pw you’ll receive $2101 from WC + $500 top-up = $2601pw

Hence, the maximum you can earn is your PIAWE (eg 1.) or approx. $2601pw (e.g 2.)

Should you be in a position where you are earning more than $2601p/w, the strong recommendation is to take out extra cover.


Kangaroos can pose a huge safety risk on country tracks, chiefly toward the latter races before sunset.

The NSWJA thanks Racing NSW for erecting fences around:

2016: Sapphire Coast

2017: Gilgandra

2018: Kempsey (to be done)

Should you witness roos at a track, please inform Tony or your local representative ASAP.


During the recent National Stewards Conference, it was proposed that a recommendation be forwarded to Racing Australia with a view of banning the use of spurs by Australian jockeys.

To the steward’s credit, prior to making the recommendation they have sought the opinions of the jockeys and trainers’ associations.

The view across Australia by both the jockeys and trainers is that we do not agree with the proposal to recommend the banning of spurs.

We will keep you posted on any further developments.


The NSWJA has approached Racing NSW on several occasions with our concerns which include:

  1. Weights dropping at acceptances
  2. Allowing only 53kg jockeys to ride 0.5kg over
  3. Having a minimum of 53kg on Friday nights

Racing NSW are presently looking carefully at the entire weighting system

It is apparent that the hybrid system of benchmarking and class racing is not working!

Minimum Ride

The minimum ride allowance (MRA) of $35.00 is paid to every jockey who has 3 rides or less

A further $75.00 is paid if you travel more than 300km return = a total of $110.00

Racing NSW will note the $35 in your stakes payment but not the $75 travel component,

Every few months they will painstakingly work out if you had less than 3 rides & travelled more than 300km to warrant the $75

We understand that the travel component will be paid in bulk over the next few weeks

Please check that Racing NSW are paying, and have paid you correctly

Damaged Saddles

The NSWJA has come to an arrangement with Racing NSW to reimburse you the cost of a replacement saddle should it be damaged on raceday.

Racing NSW has asked that you abide by the following process:

For future situations, jockeys should please:

- report the matter to stewards & request photographs be taken of the damaged saddle

- the saddle should be repaired if possible, or

- provide a photograph (if able) and quote for the replacement for review and approval

- Racing NSW will arrange direct payment to the supplier or they will reimburse you.

In the first instance, call Tony and he will forward the photo and email to Racing NSW.

Sick & Wounded

John Kissick was involved in an accident away from the racetrack in November 2016. John had serious back injuries and the rod in his back was removed before Christmas. John is seeing the physio, doing a lot of swimming and is hoping to make a full recovery.

Melanie Bolwell suffered a traumatic brain injury at Warialda on 8th April 2017. Mel began driving again in mid-January and recommenced work at Sue Grills stable in February. Mel is in good spirits and is hoping doctors will allow her to ride a pony in April, and then back race riding a few months later.

Michael Travers injured his ribs in a fall on 4th November 2017 at Dubbo. Mick is booked to see the specialist in the next week. Unfortunately the ribs haven’t healed as quickly as he was hoping. We are not sure when Mick will return to riding.

Shelley Walsh dislocated her shoulder in a fall on Melbourne Cup day at the Sapphire Coast. Unfortunately, the shoulder is not healing, and Shelley has pain around the shoulder. Shelley has her next specialist appointment in late April.

Cejay Graham injured her wrists in a fall at Grafton on 8th November 2017. The injury has healed well and Cejay will be returning to riding this Saturday

Daniel Northey fractured his pelvis extensively in a trackwork incident at Scone on 6th December 2017. The injury is healing, albeit slowly. Daniel is in good spirits and is looking forward to returning to the saddle in a few months.

Brendan Ward broke his hip on 20th December at Canberra. Brendan has just returned to the gym and is making steady progress. Hoping to return to riding in a few months.

Nyssa Burrells suffered a traumatic brain injury during jump outs at Warwick Farm on 29th December 2017. Nyssa had made excellent progress and is now recovering from home. Nyssa will be undergoing outgoing rehabilitation for quite some time.

Simon Miller injured his hand in a fall at Nowra on 15th January 2018. Simon has an appointment in late March and is hoping to return to riding soon after.

Aaron Williams was involved in a trackwork incident at Kembla in November 2017, in which he injured his foot, severely tearing tendons and breaking a bone. Aaron’s progress has been slow and is not sure when he will be able to return to riding.

Brock Ryan was injured in a trackwork accident at Kembla on 24th February. Brock tore ligaments in his ankle and soft tissue damage. Brock is hoping to return to the saddle sometime in April

Adrian Layt injured his ribs at Wyong on 3rd March. Adrian is resting and will be having further tests next week to determine the full extent of the injury.

We wish a speedy recovery to all the above jockeys and we hope to see them back in the jockeys’ room.

Godspeed to all other jockeys that have been injured recently.

NSW Ambulance

The NSWJA has only recently been informed on a change of policy regarding the Ambulance costs.

Previously if you were attended to by the paramedics, that cost was absorbed by the NSW Ambulance costs for attending the races.

However, that is no longer the case. If you are attended to by the paramedics or given a lift from the barriers (late scratching) to the jockeys’ room, they will send you an invoice for at least $328.

Should that occur, please send the NSW Ambulance invoice to Tony Crisafi tony@nswjockeys.org – Workers Comp will cover that cost!

Furthermore, a quick reminder, IF you are transported to hospital by ambulance you will receive a bill for between $400 and $600 from NSW Ambulance.

IF YOU HAVE contacted workers compensation and obtained a claim number, the costs will be covered.

IF YOU DON’T obtain a claim number you will required to pay NSW Ambulance the cost.

The Annual Racing Fraternity Mass

Date: Sunday 11th March at 11.00am

Venue: Randwick Racecourse Level 2 New stand

Please bring some racing gear if you want it blessed!

All jockeys & their families are welcome!