Jockey

Rich List

The world’s highest-earning jockeys

When you think of the world’s highest-earning sportspeople, the likes of footballers, Formula 1 drivers and boxers probably spring to mind, but some of the highest-earning sports stars in the world are unknown to even some of the biggest sports fans.

Horse racing jockeys compete for some eye-watering sums of money, and while a big chunk of their winnings goes to the owners of the horses, many of them have still racked up some quite incredible sums over the years.

Even more surprising, many of the sport’s very top earners aren’t even that well known outside of their own countries, with no British names making the top 50.

top 3 jockeys
1

Yutaka
Take

@horse.turf07
Career earnings - $796m
Career wins - 4,249

Taking the top spot is Japan’s Yutaka Take, who has earned an estimated $796m over the course of his extensive career, picking up over 4,200 wins in the process. While he might not be that well known on these shores, Take is a living legend in his native Japan, and holds multiple all-time records, after following in the footsteps of his father, Kunihiko, who was also a famed jockey.

2

Norihiro
YOKOYAMA

@neo.shigematy
Career earnings - $561m
Career wins - 2,840

Another Japanese jockey takes second place, Norihiro Yokoyama, with career earnings of over $560m. Again, Yokoyama is virtually unknown outside of his home country, yet has still had some impressive winnings over the years. As you can see, prize funds in Japan are much higher than for jockeys in the UK or USA, which has led many foreign jockeys to try their hand at racing there.

3

Masayoshi
Ebina

@e_torako
Career earnings - $479m
Career wins - 2,538

And yet another Japanese jockey rounded out the top three, Masayoshi Ebina with earnings of $479m. In fact, eight of the top ten highest earners and half of the top 25 all hailed from Japan! Ebina was best known for riding El Condor Pasa and also had some success outside of his native country, winning the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud and coming second in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, both in France.

The highest-earnings jockeys

Ranked

Rank

Jockey

Country

Career wins

Career earnings

Frankie Dettori

Interestingly, just one jockey who mainly plies their trade in the UK cracked the top 50 in our list, which was Frankie Dettori, with estimated career earnings of over $212m, showing just how significantly higher the prize purses are in other countries (especially Japan).

Tony McCoy
& Ruby walsh

For all of their success, the likes of Tony McCoy ($54.8m) and Ruby Walsh ($29m) are still some way off the riches of some of the lesser-known jockeys on our list.

Methodology

The majority of earnings data were sourced from Equibase (for jockeys based in the US) and Umanity (for jockeys based in Japan), while the Racing Post was used to calculate earnings for British and Irish-based jockeys, although only one (Frankie Dettori) made the top 50.