Women In the weighing room: gender discrimination on the thoroughbred racetrack

Roberts, Laura-Jayne and MacLean, Malcolm (2012) Women In the weighing room: gender discrimination on the thoroughbred racetrack. Sport in Society, 15 (3). pp. 1-15.

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Abstract

Women jockeys are a small minority on the thoroughbred racetrack and securesignificantly fewer racing mounts than their male counterparts. This suggests female jockeys are facing discriminatory barriers, in one of the only major professional sportswhere men and women compete against each other on equal terms. This exploratorystudy considers discriminatory barriers that exist and the effects they have on women’scomparative profile and participation in the flat racing industry. Six participants wererecruited for the study from different areas within the industry, and with at least threeyears experience. Information was derived from semi structured individual interviews. The data was analysed using discourse analysis techniques. Five main themes wereevident: a culture of sexism, including the sense that women are more nurturing;opportunities, including for women to become trainers; body shape and strength; riskand danger; industry fashion and trends. The results from this study suggest women face discrimination in horseracing onaccount of a number of factors, the three main perceived reasons are due to theirphysical strength, body shape and the tradition and history embedded within theindustry. Whilst there is a shift starting to occur where more women are coming throughin flat racing, this is slow. Participants consider that women may find these barriers andperceptions held by others difficult to overcome, which may result in their inability toachieve equality in this sport. Given the exploratory character of the study, conclusionsare tentative and we propose a number of areas for further research.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Sport & Exercise > Sport and Exercise
Research Priority Areas: Sport, Exercise, Health & Wellbeing
Depositing User: Ineke Tijsma
Date Deposited: 28 Apr 2015 12:40
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2016 18:22
URI: http://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/1635

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