A dispute between the Jockeys’ Guild and Churchill Downs Inc. has been resolved with the racetrack operating company agreeing to a contract with the jockeys’ organization.
“CDI agreed to make payments to the Jockeys’ Guild to subsidize health insurance, life insurance and disability benefits for all jockeys who are members of the Guild and ride in the United States,” the Guild said in a statement.
Terms of the multi-year agreement were not announced. Last fall, CDI announced it was ending its annual payments to the Guild, totaling $330,000 for its tracks--Churchill Downs Racetrack, Calder Casino & Race Course, Arlington Park, and Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots. The Guild receives the money in exchange for granting the tracks that participate “media rights” to use jockey images for promotion of the sport.
The dispute resulted in jockeys who ride at the CDI-owned tracks presenting a petition to the CDI board calling for renewal of the contract. Also, two states—California and Illinois—temporarily withheld ratification of advanced deposit wagering licenses to CDI-owned TwinSpires.com.
“We sincerely appreciate the commitment made by CDI to support the benefits that impact our jockeys,” said Terry Meyocks, national manager of the guild said in a statement. “This agreement will directly benefit approximately 950 active, retired, and permanently disabled members. It is critical that we receive support from all of our racetrack partners within the industry. “
Currently, the Guild provides life insurance, AD&D insurance, and temporary disability benefits to its active members, as well as life insurance and aid to the permanently disabled members.