Apprentice jockey Jordan Vaughan talks to OnToAWinner
How did you first get involved in racing?
I didn’t start riding till the age of 13. This was the age where I found out what hard work is. Every Saturday I went to Barnston Riding Centre at 6am in the morning till 8pm just to get 1 hour free ride. But I absolutely loved it and it led me to a career in racing. At the age of 16 I attended the British Racing School down in Newmarket after seeing advertised in the Internet. And since then… I have never looked back and I still love it today.
What was the first yard you worked at?
After leaving the British Racing School, I continued to stay on in Newmarket for a good trainer called Marco Botti. This where I would say I learnt most of working and riding out in racing. I stayed there for 2 years and I managed to get my apprentice licence out for him but sadly didn’t get a ride off him. So moved on to George Margarson also in Newmarket where he allowed me to race ride. After 2 years of being there, the rides dried up so I moved to my current trainer Karl Burke. This was the best choice I have ever made. He has given me plenty of chances and I am very confident that I will continue working at Karl’s until I (hopefully) lose my claim.
What is a typical day like for you in a racing yard?
A typical day for me in a racing yard is getting myself up out of bed and being in the yard for 7am, ready for first lot at 7.15 am. We will ride 4 lots of horses out and each lot is around about an hour long. We generally finish about 1 pm. If I’m not racing, we will then return to the yard again from 4pm till 6pm. In this time we will look after our horses we attend to, which is usually 5. We will skip them out, hay and water them and groom them.
Which jockey inspires you?
The jockey that most inspired me has got to be George Baker. Not only do I like his style of riding. He is very approachable for advice and for a very tall lad he has managed his weight very well.
What is the best horse you have ridden?
I would like to say Excelebration when I was at Marco Botti’s. But I only trotted him once. I would say now it would after be Quiet Reflection which I ride out most mornings. I’ve picked her because I think she hasn’t showed her full potential yet. I think there is plenty left to come from her.
What has been your favourite horse?
Again this would after be Quiet Reflection along with her being the best horse I have ever ridden, she is also my favourite. I have a very good relationship with this lovely fully and not only I ride her, I look after her. She’s such a sweet filly to handle and look after. A true professional.
What is your ambition in racing?
My ambition in racing is to make it as a top jockey. Not just to lose my claim, but hopefully I will be able to continue getting plenty of rides to look after myself after losing my claim and hopefully take on a nice retaining job for a decent trainer. That’s is probably the biggest worry for a jockey after losing their claim. It’s tough for the lads once we can’t take some weight of.
What has been your most memorable day in racing?
My most memorable day (not for a good reason) has to be breaking my leg at York racecourse. Putting that aside, my most memorable day has got to be my first ride for Karl Burke on Little lady Katie. She is one of my biggest winners so far.
What do you like to do on your spare time?
I love to relax and recharge my batteries. I think this is very important for jockeys because of the amount of miles they cover on the road and the times they get up very early in the morning to ride out for other trainers so you can pick up more spare rides.
What advice would you give to any young person thinking about getting involved in racing?
The advice I would give the young people would be, it’s hard work being in racing but if you want something so much or want to reach a goal so much, you have to push yourself hard. It doesn’t matter how tired you get and the amount of down days you have, you have to keep pushing yourself because the good days will soon come along!