1. Please describe how the jockeys are paid in your country. If appropriate, please provide the monetary amount for compensation or the percentage for riding fees, as well as the percentage of the purse distribution. Of these fees, please advise how much, if any, each rider contributes to benefits and/or the jockey association.

All riding fees are paid by JRA directly to the jockeys account weekly, and all percentages, amount decided by the Owners and Trainers Association, are paid to the Trainers Association by the JRA, which will be transferred to the Jockeys Association and be distributed to the individual jockeys.

Further, jockeys will receive incentive allowance of 16,000 yen per ride from JRA, and jockeys contribute this amount to the Jockeys Association.

  • Riding Fee:

Flat Races

Grade 1 races


Grade 2 & 3 races


Other races


Jump Races

Jump Grade 1 races


Jump Grade 2 & 3 races


Other jump races


  • Percentage of the purse distribution:

The Percentages decided by the Owners and Trainers Association to be paid to the Jockeys are 5% of the prize money for flat races and 7% for jump races.

2. Please advise if your country provides socialized medicine. If not, please describe the health care that is provided to riders and who contributes to the cost of such expense.

Yes. In Japan, we have national health insurance plan that applies to all citizens.

3. Please advise if jockeys are covered under a workers’ compensation program or something similar in the event of an accident in your country. If not, who is responsible for the cost of care for the injured jockey?

Besides the national health insurance, there is jockey’s compensation system which is established by JRA, and jockeys mutual aid system established by the Jockeys Association.

4. Please advise if foreign riders are covered if they are injured in your country. If so, who provides the insurance for foreign riders when they come to ride? How long is the coverage? Does it only cover medical care received in your country or does it also cover care once they have returned home?

JRA will fully cover the medical expenses and disability compensation as long as they (JRA licensed foreign jockeys) stay in Japan. They will not be covered after they return home. But as for physical disability lump sum, foreign jockeys can only receive half the amount of that of the Japanese jockeys.

5. Please provide all sources of funding for your jockey association.

JRA will pay 16,000 yen per ride to the jockey as jockey’s incentive allowance and the jockeys contribute this amount to the Jockeys Association, which will be used for retirement benefits, operating expenses and so forth.

6. Please advise if it is mandatory for jockeys to be a member of your organization.

Not applicable. (It is not mandatory for JRA licensed jockeys to be the member of the Jockeys Association but there is 100% membership of JRA licensed jockeys at present.)

7. Please provide all sources of funding for the jockey benefits that your members receive, including contributions from the jockeys, the owners, your association, the government and racing bodies, etc.

Please refer to answer 5 above.

8. Please provide a description of all benefits provided to the jockeys who are members of your organization such as disability benefits including temporary or permanent disabilities, death benefits, pension plans, medical insurance and coverage, etc.

See attached file, at bottom.

9. Please provide a description of benefits provided for retired jockeys, if any, in addition to the benefits provided to active riders.

They have retirement benefits which is a part of jockeys’ compensation system.

10. Please advise if your association receives any of the fines paid by jockeys as a result of racing infractions or violations.

All administrative fines received by JRA will be counted as sundry income of JRA.

11. Please provide any and all information pertaining to the medical standards and guidelines or requirements during race meets. For example, the number of doctors, medical personnel, ambulances, relations with medical trauma centers, etc.

JRA provides:

  • 1 or 2 doctors
  • 1 or 2 nurses
  • 2 - 4 ambulances (depending on the size and shape of the racetrack) Each ambulance consists of a driver, a JRA official, and several part-time relief workers.

12. If required, who is responsible for the cost of liability policies for coverage of the jockeys in the event of an accident?

JRA pays for jockey’s compensation system, and the Jockeys Association pays for jockey’s mutual aid system.

13. Please advise if your organization has a charity fund to assist riders (both active and retired) with hardships and who provides the funding.

JRA does not have any charity fund but the Jockeys Association has special reserved funds accumulated from the contributions by the jockeys.

14. Please provide the standards for the safety vest and for the helmets for the jockeys. Who is responsible for inspecting the equipment to make sure that it is in compliance with the rules. Is any of the equipment provided by or paid for by the association or others?

Jockeys can use any safety vest or helmet as long as they meet the requirements of IFHA standards. However, JRA has developed original safety vests (manufactured by DESCENTE) and helmets (manufactured by ARAI) which would fit to Japanese race conditions including climate, track condition and structure, so JRA recommends the jockeys use to the JRA standard safety vests and helmets.

JRA provides one safety vest and two helmets to every jockey. When they get damaged and showed signs of wear, they have to be replaced by the user’s own expense, but in case of a fell from a horse, we provide a new helmet or a vest as we will send that helmet or vest worn during the fell for research.

15. Is there a minimum and/or maximum age for licensing? Is schooling or training mandated?

Minimum age is 16 but there is no maximum age. Normally 3-year-schooling is required for taking the JRA jockey license exam, but as for licensed jockeys of local governments (NAR racing) or jockeys already licensed by foreign authority, they are not required to receive schooling or training by JRA.

16. Please explain with regards to the kitchens in the jockey quarter or food that is available to riders during the race day.

There are kitchens at jockey’s quarter and jockeys can order some meals and snacks at their own expense. Those kitchens are operated by JRA and JRA pays for kitchen staff expenses and utility costs.

17. Please advise the minimum scale of weights for riders in your country. Additionally, please advise what equipment is included when a jockey weighs out before the race.

The minimum weight for flat races is not specified in our Rules of Racing; 49kgs and in a race designated in the program 48kgs. In the meantime the minimum weight for jump races is specified in our Rules of Racing; 56kgs for 3yo and 57kgs for 4yo and over.

When weighing out, jockey must include his safety vest, racing colors (silks), saddle, lead bag, sponges under the saddle, belt, girth and surcingle.

Number cloth, helmet, whip, goggles, bride, rings, muzzle, hood, blinkers, pacifiers, martingale and anything worn on the horse’s legs are not included.

18. Please advise if your organization provides assistance and education pertaining health and well-being such nutrition, psychological, job retraining, etc.

Our affiliate organization, the Horsemen's Benevolent Association offers seminars on nutrition and so on.

19. Is jockey advertising allowed in your country? If so, what are the requirements to allow for jockeys to wear the advertising? Is it the individual riders who enter into the contracts with the sponsors or does your organization handle to negotiations? How are the proceeds of the contracts distributed or do all of the funds go to the individual jockey?


20. How are the jockey agents and valets paid? What is the usual percentage that the agents receive? What is the usual percentage for valets?

JRA has no information regarding how the agents/valets are paid, as well as the percentage as the contracts are made individually between jockeys and agents/valets.

See below Answers to Q.8 medical, income, death, etc. benefits when


During Races

During Training


Medical insurance

All covered (diagnosis, treatment, medications, operation and so on)

They use national health insurance plan and pay 30% at the hospital in the first place, but JRA covers that amount afterwards.


Disability compensation

1st degree 64,320,000yen

14th degree 2,400,000yen

1st degree 42,880,000yen

14th degree 1,600,000yen


Special compensation

Up to 4,000,000yen

Up to 2,000,000yen


Bereaved family compensation




Increasing of Compensation (if the jockey had any dependent)

30% increase of

1st to 3rd degrees of Disability compensation

Bereaved family compensation


Lump-sum funeral cover



Hospitalization compensation

2,000 yen per day for hospitalization.

If JRA President warrants special consideration concerning the degree of the injury, JRA would pay a special lump-sum up to 400,000yen.


Travel expense for family

With doctor’s direction, one member of the family can receive the travel expense from home to the hospitalized place.He or she may also receive a daily cover of 10,000yen for up to 10 days.


Body transport cost

Actual costs will be borne by JRA



Traveler's insurance

For those jockeys who ride abroad, JRA will have them insured for traveler's insurance.


Difference between compensation and traveler’s insurance

If the jockey got injured or died when riding abroad, the amount of money he/she or the bereaved receives from JRA will be the difference between the amount of JRA compensation and the traveler’s insurance.

Administrative Instruction of Rules of administration for Jockey Accident Compensation


During Races

During Training


Details of Special compensation (Article #5)

Death or Injury of 1st degree to 3rd degree:4,000,000yen

Jockey Retirement or Injury of 4th degree to 7th degree: 2,000,000yen

Death or Injury of 1st degree to 3rd degree:2,000,000yen

Jockey Retirement or Injury of 4th degree to 7th degree: 1,000,000yen


Hospitalization compensation (Article #21)

Injury from riding during racing/training

In critical condition or a severe physical disability (possible chance of 1st to 5th grade of disability) 400,000yen

Injury from riding during racing/training

In case of hospitalization for more than 2 months200,000yen


Traveler's insurance (Article #23-2)

Injury accident

Death 32,000,000yen

Treatment 10,000,000yen


Death 10,000,000yen

Treatment 10,000,000yen

Liability insurance


Travel expense for family


Rules of Administration for Special Provision of Jockey Accident Compensation for Foreign Jockeys



These rules apply to all foreign licensed jockeys who ride in Japan for the specially permitted period of time (hereinafter the ‘foreign jockey’).These rules are made as exemptions to the Rules of Administration for Jockey Accident Compensation.


Special Provision for Medical insurance (#8)

If a foreign jockey who got injured in a race or training leaves Japan after the accident, he/she will no longer be paid the compensation money on that accident.


Special Provision for Disability compensation (#14)

Foreign jockeys can receive half the amount of the compensation listed on the article #14 of Rules of administration for Jockey Accident Compensation.

If the foreign jockey leaves Japan after the accident without being paid the compensation, he/she will not be paid the compensation on that accident afterwards.
Article #19 of the Rules of Administration for Jockey Accident Compensation is not available for foreign jockeys.


Special Provision for Bereaved family compensation (#16)

For foreign jockeys, the amount of bereaved family compensation stated on Article #16 will be:

During the race: 24,000,000yen
During training: 16,000,000yen


Special Provision for Lump-sum funeral cover (#20)

Lump-sum funeral cover will not be paid on these occasions:

when the foreign jockey left Japan after the accident and died outside of Japan
when the foreign jockey died in Japan for the accident but has the funeral outside of Japan


Special Provision for Hospitalization compensation (#21)

When the foreign jockey leaves Japan, he/she will no longer be paid any of the compensation money on that accident.


    • When the foreign jockey rides abroad while licensed in Japan, the compensations will not be applied to the injuries he/she gets outside of Japan.