Groups Form New Amateur Jockeys Organization

The formation of a new amateur jockeys organization was announced by the Amateur Riders Club of America and the National Steeplechase Association.

The Amateur Jockeys Association (AJA), which will be managed by the NSA, will coordinate amateur races at a number of American racetracks and steeplechase meets, in addition to sending American jockeys to international amateur competitions.

"I have been searching for a way to ensure the future of ARCA, and this is it," said Pierre Bellocq, better known as Daily Racing Form cartoonist PEB. "I can work to increase the visibility and health of amateur racing, like I do now, without worrying about the business details. The NSA can work on the licensing and the administration side, while also helping further the cause with its race meets and racetracks."

Bellocq will continue to serve as a liaison between AJA and the host racetracks, as well as the foreign amateur riding organizations. The NSA already coordinates licensing applications and record-keeping for all steeplechase participants, and will do the same for the AJA riders (many of whom are also licensed steeplechase jockeys).

Formed in 1986, ARCA has hosted races at a number of U.S. racetracks while showcasing amateur jockeys from all over the world.

Summer AJA races include events at Philadelphia Park (June 22), Monmouth Park (July 18), Saratoga Open House steeplechase meet (July 20), Colonial Downs, Delaware Park (Sept. 14), Philadelphia Park (Sept. 16).

Six World Cup of Nations events are planned for amateur jockeys this summer and fall -- Aug. 3 at Deauville, France, Aug. 31 at Luzern, Switzerland, Sept. 20 at Arlington Park and Sept. 28 at Merano, Italy.

Further information is available on the internet at www.amateurjockeys.org.

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