What does it mean when a jockey claims weight?

When looking at horse race, you’ll often take a look at the weight of a horse as it can make a big difference to your selections. But, sometimes, when an inexperienced jockey is on board, you will hear people talk about him claiming a certain amount of weight. So, what does this actually mean?

Well, basically, as the jockey is inexperienced, he won’t have as good a chance of winning a race as an experienced jockey. For that reason, an allowance is given when these amateurs race against professions.

The allowances range from 7lb to 3lb depending on how many winners the jockey has had in the past. An apprentice jockey can be between the age of 16 to 25, whereas a conditional jockey cannot be older than 26.

There is a table for rider’s allowances so you can fully understand it:

Apprentices:

7lb until they have won 20 races;

5lb until they have won 50 races;

3lb until they have won 95 races.

Conditionals:

7lb until they have won 20 races;

5lb until they have won 40 races;

3lb until they have won 75 races

So, make sure you’re always checking the weights and if an apprentice jockey is claiming any weight from the rest of the field, it could make a big difference!