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Horse Jockeys With Highest Net Worth In 2023




In the world of horse racing, jockeys are the unsung heroes, guiding their noble steeds to victory and bringing home the bacon. 

We all know that horse racing is a prestigious sport where there is a lot of money involved, but just how much bacon are the jockeys home? 

So, let’s look at some of the highest-paid jockeys that managed to accumulate the biggest net worth over their professional careers.

Understanding Jockey Earnings

Jockey earnings are like horse races – there are a lot of factors at play. 

From the prize money of the race to the jockey’s experience and reputation, there’s a lot that goes into determining a jockey’s paycheck. 

Some jockeys even get a cut of the horse’s winnings, making it a high-stakes game indeed.

A jockey’s earnings are determined by a variety of factors. Among these factors are:

Experience and Reputation

The greater a jockey’s earnings are likely to be, the more experience and success they have. Experienced jockeys have demonstrated to be skillful and educated in their trade, making them more desirable to owners and trainers.

Race Prize Money

The amount of money a jockey makes is directly proportional to the race’s prize money. The bigger the prize money, the higher the jockey’s earnings are expected to be.

Owners’ Readiness to Pay

Owners are willing to pay extra for jockeys with a demonstrated track record of success. Successful jockeys are more likely to bring in larger earnings for their owners, making them more desirable.

This means that even though top jockeys have earned more than $300 million in prize winnings throughout their career, their net worth is significantly smaller. 

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Of course, we couldn’t know their actual net worth since they are not open about their finances, but we can guess the number based on their professional career.

Jockeys with Highest Net Worth in 2023

Javier Castellano

The one and only Javier Castellano leads our list of horse jockeys with the highest net worth in 2023. This Venezuelan-born jockey has been a force to be reckoned with in the horse racing world for years, with a staggering net worth of $20 million. 

Castellano has almost 5,000 career victories, including significant races such as the Kentucky Derby and the Breeders’ Cup. It’s no surprise this guy is wealthy!

John Velazquez

Next up, we have the Puerto Rican-born John Velazquez, with a net worth of $16 million. 

Velazquez is a two-time Kentucky Derby winner who has been riding for over three decades, proving that experience pays off big time. His ability to connect with horses and tactical riding style have earned him a reputation as one of the best jockeys in the world, as well as a pretty penny. You can find his name among the winners here: 

Mike Smith

Mike Smith is another jockey who’s no stranger to making it rain, with a net worth of $15 million. Hailing from Texas, Smith has become a top earner in the sport with his smooth and consistent riding style. 

With three Kentucky Derby wins and numerous other victories, Smith has cemented his place in horse racing history, and his bank account reflects it.

Yutaka Take

Let’s take a quick trip to the Land of the Rising Sun, where we find our next jockey on the list, Yutaka Take. This Japanese rider may not be as well-known in the Western hemisphere, but he’s got some serious cred when it comes to horse racing. 

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With a possible net worth of $12 million (maybe much higher), Take has been racking up victories, including triumphs in prestigious races such as the Japan Cup and the Dubai World Cup

It’s no wonder he’s the highest-earning jockey in Japan, with an annual income that would make even the most seasoned Wall Street banker blush. With his impressive skills on the saddle and a record of over 4,000 career wins, Take has proven that he’s a force to be reckone


Q: What is a horse jockey?

A: A horse jockey rides horses in or steeplechase racing, primarily as a profession. The word also applies to camel riders in camel racing.

Q: How much do horse jockeys weigh, and how tall are they?

A: Horse jockeys must be light to ride at the weights assigned to their mounts. The weight of a jockey racing on the flat usually ranges from 108 to 118 lb (49 to 54 kg). Jump jockeys are often taller, with multiple examples over 5 ft 10 in (178 cm).

Q: How do horse jockeys get paid?

A: Horse jockeys are generally self-employed, nominated by horse trainers to ride their horses in races for a fee and a percentage of the purse winnings.

Q: What are the risks of being a horse jockey?

A: Horse jockeys face a very high risk of debilitating or life-threatening injuries as they ride at high speeds on unpredictable animals.

Q: What are some of the awards and honors for horse jockeys?

A: They include the Australia Scobie Breasley Medal, the Canada Avelino Gomez Memorial Award, the United Kingdom Lester Award, the Champion Flat Jockey Award, the Champion Jump Jockey Award, the United States George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award, the Isaac Murphy Award, etc.

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