RQ announces riding and driving fee increases

Racing Queensland has announced an increase to the base fees paid to jockeys and harness drivers state-wide.

From July 4, 2022, the base riding fee will increase from $225 to $230, while the trials riding payment will jump to $78. 

The increase follows an agreement between both RQ and the Queensland Jockeys’ Association signed in 2020 to increase the base riding fee by $5 per annum over a five-year period.

As a result, Queensland-based hoops will enjoy a 12% rise in payment throughout the agreement period.

The state’s harness drivers – who currently receive $70 per drive – will now pocket $72 each time they step into the bike, meaning fees have increased by over 20% since 2020.

In a further boost for participants, superannuation will increase from 10% to 10.5% as per government legislation, commencing July 1.

“We are pleased to be able to deliver another increase to the base fees for our jockeys and drivers around the state,” RQ Executive General Manager Operations Adam Wallish said.

“This increase is a deserved acknowledgement to the service our jockeys and drivers in the Sunshine State, whose contribution to the success of the sport is immeasurable.

“We look forward to a continuation in delivering positive outcomes for our participants.”

As a part of an ongoing commitment to deliver returns back to its participants, RQ has provided more than $39 million in additional prize money to the thoroughbred racing code since FY16 – an increase of almost 37%.

QJA Secretary Pam O’Neill welcomed the fee increase on behalf of her members.

“We are pleased to be able to work with Racing Queensland in delivering this positive outcome for riders around the state,” she said.

“This increase provides further surety for those at the coalface of the sport, and celebrates the contribution made by jockeys to racing in Queensland.”

Similarly, the harness racing code has received an additional $5.2 million in prize money since FY16, equating to a 31% uplift of returns to the code’s participants.

Breeders, Owners, Trainers, Reinspersons Association President Daren Garrard said that he was pleased to continue working with RQ in delivering beneficial initiatives for the code.  

“BOTRA is pleased to work collaboratively with RQ to continue to increase returns to participants,” he said. 

“This relationship has helped deliver several initiatives in recent years, including an increase in trainer’s percentages to 10%, a continued investment in QBRED for owners and breeders, as well as this deserved increase for drivers.”

By Racing Queensland