Jockey Silks: Commonly Asked Questions

Silks, also known as “colors”, are the colorful jackets and helmet covers that a jockey wears in a race; they are used to silently announce the owner of the horse and to also help identify the horse and jockey during the race. Each registered owner in each racing jurisdiction in the United States has their own unique set of silks. According to The Jockey Club, there are over 28,000 sets of registered silks in the United States today!

Unless you are actively involved on the backside of a racetrack, much of racehorse ownership is hands off; you likely do not see your horse daily and you are probably not making all of the day-to-day decisions when it comes to the management of your horse. For example, if you have purchased pieces of a racehorse in a syndicate (more about syndicates can be found here), the horse’s jockey is most likely going to wear the syndicate silks. However, if you form your own partnership with friends or family, or own your horse(s) outright, you will be able to design your stable’s silks including: colors chosen, pattern design, and materials used.

One commonly used handicapping tactic for newcomers is placing a wager on the horse whose jockey is wearing a “cool” set of silks!

To read more, click HERE.

Caroline Sumner
Horse Racing 101 founder and south Alabama-native Caroline Sumner grew up riding horses in a variety of English sports such as eventing and hunter/jumper. Her first experience at a racetrack was in 2004 when she and her mother visited Keeneland Racecourse and various breeding farms in Lexington, Kentucky. While she loved the horses, her real passion for the racing industry came a few years later when she met her now-deceased off-track thoroughbred, Kaotic’s Reality.

She graduated from Midway College in December of 2012 with a degree in Equine Studies. Throughout college, she worked on a commercial breeding farm and on the racetrack in various positions that included barn foreman, hot walker, and groom. A career-ending shoulder injury forced her to choose other methods of remaining involved with the horse racing industry, but she remains an avid supporter of thoroughbreds both on the racetrack and in their second careers.

Caroline currently resides in San Antonio, Texas where she operates full-time in addition to two other projects. Her other interests include bodybuilding, cooking, reading, and traveling.

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