Jockeys with weight issue may benefit from John Moores University study

The plight of jockeys who struggle with diets could be helped by work by a Liverpool university that has the sport’s powers-that-be taking notice

The suggestion in Saturday’s Guardian that racing does not yet do enough to promote wellbeing among jockeys has been backed up by one rider who has had serious problems maintaining his weight at the low level required by the sport. Gary Bartley, a Flat jockey since 2003, spoke on Sundayabout how his struggles with the scales over the past five years had “pushed me to the edge of insanity”.

Bartley admits that he used to engage in “flipping”, the habit of self-induced vomiting which is apparently still relied on by some of Britain’s jockeys, along with other unhealthy practices, including drinking alcohol as an aid to weight loss. “I was dehydrating myself, sweating in the bath,” he says. “It puts you in a bad place. You take your pressures out on your family.”

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