This week I finally got round to watch the short film The Fall. This film was created to raise awareness of mental health amongst jockeys. I think it is a must watch for anyone who enjoys the racing or any sport where the public place bets on the outcome.
As a lover of horse racing I follow plenty of jockeys and trainers on social media. I am always horrified at some of the comments supposed racing fans make about jockeys in particular. I do enjoy putting some money on the races, so I can understand their frustration. But some of the claims of cheating and sloppy mistakes, from people who have probably never sat on a horse, is shocking. Not only this, but some of them take airing their disappointment to the extreme, making disgusting comments about the jockey and wishing them harm.
The Fall does a fantastic job of highlighting some of the abuse jockeys face on a daily basis. It also does a fantastic job of showing the pressures of being a jockey. The pressure to stay at a certain weight, skipping multiple meals to keep themselves under their natural weight. The loneliness of constantly being on the road, often not seeing loved ones. The pressure to keep owners and trainers happy, to keep the rides and money coming in. All these factors are very hard on someone’s mental health, online abuse is something no one should have to put up with and more needs to be done to support jockeys as our sport would be nothing without them!
While all the characters in the film are fictional, the social media comments included are REAL comments sent to jockeys. This film was created by Equine Productions and supported by the racing industry and charities. I really enjoyed The Fall and found it quite harrowing at times. But it is well worth a watch and highly recommend it. If you have Sky Sports you should be able to watch it on catch up.
Last Updated on 31/10/2021