Former rider Nathan Horrocks teams up with Cold Feet star Robert Bathurst for film which puts spotlight on jockey tragedies in bid to raise awareness of mental health in horse racing
- Nathan Horrocks hopes The Fall will help change damaging attitudes to riders
- It deals with a jockey having to deal with the aftermath of a high-profile fall
- The 22-minute film will be screened on Sky Sports Racing at 10pm on Thursday
Jump jockey turned film-maker Nathan Horrocks hopes his new movie The Fall will help change damaging attitudes to riders inside and outside the sport.
The Fall is inspired by the experiences of Horrocks and his former colleague James Banks, who committed suicide in March last year four months before Grand National-winning jockey Liam Treadwell also took his own life.
The film is dedicated to both jockeys and focuses on the aftermath of a last-fence fall from a winning position for a jockey who is then told he has lost the ride by the trainer and is abused on social media.
Nathan Horrocks hopes his new movie The Fall will help change damaging attitudes to riders
Horrocks believes jump jockeys are afraid to show weakness or seek help because they fear it could have a negative effect on their careers.
Horrocks, who worked on the project with actor Robert Bathurst, best known for Cold Feet, said: ‘I want the world to see jockeys as humans.
‘With jockeys being self-employed, they are always worried about who might take their place.
‘You hear it all the time, “Aren’t jockeys tough?” But they have no choice. They are constantly trying to hide any lack of confidence or weakness. That brings pressures.
Horrocks worked on the 22-minute film with Cold Feet star Robert Bathurst (above)
‘James was a good friend. He was sat across from me wanting to say the same things but neither of us could do it. It is like, “You know I am suffering, but I can’t tell you”.
‘Because of the stigma, I went somewhere privately for help because I didn’t want people to know, but if we have these conversations now, hopefully we won’t have another James Banks.’
A 2019 study found 54 per cent of jockeys suffered from stress in some form, low self-esteem or a mental health disorder, while 2020 research indicated 86 per cent had received online abuse.
The script for The Fall uses real social media messages sent to jockeys.
The Fall is on Sky Sports Racing on Thursday at 10pm.