In an attempt to produce the next generation of elite performing jockeys, the BHA have announced a major overhaul to the jockeys licensing and training process with the changes due to come into effect on April 1.

Aspiring jockeys will have to pass a pre-licence assessment before being considered for a place on the main apprentice/conditional course.

Currently, the apprentice/conditional courses run for five days. Under the new proposals this will be extended to ten days with the cost per attendee rising to £1650.

Nick Rust, Chief Executive of the BHA, said: “The changes announced today ensure that our jockeys will have access to significantly enhanced technical, personal and professional training.

“A more efficient and extensive assessment process can help aspiring jockeys who have a genuine chance of success to receive the first class levels of support and guidance they require.

“One of our key strategic objectives is to prioritise the welfare of our human and equine athletes and these changes show we are clearly focussed on investing in and looking after our people, as well as our horses.”

There will also be an extension of an annual training day which runs alongside the Jockey Coaching Programme. This aims to ensure targeted and structured professional development for inexperienced jockeys.

Today, 30% of licensing course attendees do not ride a winner and a staggering 88% do not ride out their claim.

These initiatives will ensure that racing is recruiting and training the best candidates

“The changes to the licensing and training programme for conditional and apprentice jockeys is a further welcome progression in the recruitment, training and development of our young riders,” added Seamus Mullins, trainer and 2017 President of the National Trainers’ Federation.

“Along with the present invaluable coaching system, these initiatives will ensure that racing is recruiting and training the best candidates for the future of our industry.

“Although trainers may be slightly inconvenienced by the extra time young jockeys are away from their place of work, this will be rewarded by the improvement in riding and life skills this extra training will provide.”