Wincanton gym plays key role in jockey Daryl Jacob's weight
Daryl Jacob knows only too well how important fitness is for a jockey. “When you are competing against the likes of AP, Ruby Walsh and Noel Fehily you can’t get away with a lack of fitness – you can tell in a race who’s fit and who isn’t.”
The ideal scenario would be to have a gym in the house.
Jacob, who will ride Zarkandar in the Champion Hurdle at the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival tomorrow, has not got that but he does have the next best thing – Wincanton Sports Centre a stone’s throw away from his home.
“I use the Sports Centre three or four times a week – I’d be lost without it. The tread mill, the static bikes and the swimming pool are great for me. I must look after my weight and my fitness. If I don’t, my weight goes up but by going there regularly it is not a problem.”
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
Although standing not far short of six feet he can ride at 10st 5lb – he did 10st 2lb on Harry The Viking in the Hennessy Gold Cup this season – but he hit a snag over Christmas when a combination of a riding suspension and over-indulging on Yuletide food saw his weight balloon.
That’s when the Sports Centre at West Hill was worth its weight in gold as he sweated off the pounds, returned to his riding weight and regained peak fitness.
Sports Centre operations manager and racing enthusiast Mark Rickwood said: “Daryl has been a member for three or fours years – we have a lot of banter, he’s a great guy and so dedicated.”
One piece of equipment popular with Jacob is a new £100,000 virtual reality treadmill. “It means you can programme it to be running almost anywhere in the world,” said Rickwood.