Jockey Phillip Parchment on weight, Wayne DaCostaFriday, September 03, 2021
BY HURBUN WILLIAMS
Since jockey Phillip Parchment decided to reduce his riding weight, his strike rate in terms of winners has improved significantly.
From 94 rides this season, Parchment has ridden six winners, finished second six times, and third on 10 occasions.
“It was a condition (weight issues) with which I have struggled soon after I ceased to be an apprentice rider. But today because of the the reality of having to be competitive, I have had to step up on my work rate to keep my riding weight down to prepare to be in line for consideration to earn a share of the quality opportunities which become available. Formerly, my riding weight was between 120 lb (55 kgs) and 123 lb (56 kgs), but now I am able to get my weight down, most of time, to about 116 lb (53.0 kgs) and 118 lb (53.5 kgs).
“I do my utmost to remain competitive. Since riding at the lighter weight, my forceful approach to riding has become less stressful after my rides and I get more quality calls from more trainers,” Parchment said.
The late Wayne DaCosta always favoured Parchment and handed him his first Derby success.
“Before I begin to talk about riding for Wayne DaCosta, I must let you know that from where I stand, he will be missed. He was much more than a trainer at least to me. He was a no-nonsense person but a well-meaning individual and was quite helpful and instrumental to most of us who rode for him.
“I graduated in the batch with Paul ”Country“ Francis and some of today's more useful riders. The first horse that I won for DaCosta was a horse by the name of Royal Vibes. Royal Vibes was a tough horse to ride. Tough horse.
“That was my first winning ride for him after which Mr DaCosta and Mr Carlton Watson handed me the opportunity to ride for them as they admired my style of riding and from there on DaCosta took me under his wings and began to mentor me and at that time in my life, I just needed someone to guide me properly, and give thanks, he was the one.
“I remained close to him for guidance, counselling and improving my riding technique. From the association, I moved up skilfully but, I was not the first-choice rider. Notwithstanding, I was there learning and working hard sometimes as the second choice even the third-choice rider.
“In my early years under Mr DaCosta's wings, Omar Walker, the first-choice rider, was there. However, at one time Omar got injured and I was called upon for some assistance and I delivered. So, from there on I began to push on and my mentor said he saw my potential and knew that I can ride. From there, I won a few races for him including in last year's Jamaica Derby aboard King Arthur and the Oaks with Princess Anne for him.
“Whatever Mr DaCosta said to you about anything it was something that will mean you good or to any other individual he has spoken with. I will miss him. They do not come like him anymore. By his passing racing has lost much more than a great owner-breeder and trainer of top racehorses. But what is noticeable, is that, his son Jason is not far behind. He is definitely a chip off the old block and he and Mr Watson are continuing the same association in racing that will remain interesting and competitive,” Parchment said.