Jockey Matters Film: Substance Abuse and Recovery

Features | 8th September 2020

A new ‘Jockey Matters’ film focusing on Substance Abuse & Support has been released featuring powerful, personal testimonies from Flat jockeys Kieran Shoemark and Ray Dawson.

The launch of the Jockey Matters film coincides with the launch of a formal partnership between the PJA (Professional Jockeys’ Association) and Sporting Chance to become the official provider of mental and emotional wellbeing support services to jockeys.

In the film, both Kieran Shoemark and Ray Dawson speak about the difficult journeys they have been on from addiction to recovery. The pair highlight some of the key issues faced by jockeys and encourage others to access the significant amount of support available.

The film also features Paul Struthers, Chief Executive of the PJA and Alex Mills, Head of Education at Sporting Chance, who explain what support is available to jockeys who may be struggling with substance abuse and the services that jockeys can use to help them in their recovery.

The film is produced by JETS (Jockeys Education & Training Scheme) and the PJA as well as being funded by Great British Racing.

Former England footballer and founder of Sporting Chance, Tony Adams, said:

We are delighted to be working with the PJA. The support they offer their members is excellent and we are pleased to be part of their package of care.

“Horse racing is one of the most physically and emotionally demanding sports we have worked with and jockeys are amazing athletes facing a unique set of challenges. Sporting Chance will provide a confidential, professional and safe place for jockeys to get support and find solutions for any emotional or mental health concerns they might have.”

The Jockey Matters film is supported by the Tom Maynard Trust and, along with other films in the series, will be used as part of the wider Jockey Training & Development Programme educating jockeys on a number of different areas which may affect them during their careers.

Jockeys can find contacts for the wide range of support that is available to them as well as more Jockey Matters videos here.