Magazine article Geographical

Risking It All

Magazine article Geographical

Risking It All

Article excerpt

Horse racing (or pacoa jara) is a way of life for the people in Sumbawa Island near Lombok in Indonesia. The bareback jockeys are all boys, some as young as five, few older than ten, and they ride full pelt with little or no safety equipment to hand.

LEFT: nine-year-old jockey, Farhan. Local officials of the island, which has a population of 1.4 million, sees pacoa jara as part of a Sumbawan tradition they wish to preserve. Some own horses themselves and use the services of the junior jockeys; TOP: ten-year-oldjockey, Aldin M Amin, prepares to ride at the starting line during a race at Lepadi racetrack; ABOVE: at Panda racetrack, the starting box gate opens and the horses burst forward. Amid the noisy applause and merriment of the crowd, the children hang on as firmly as they can to their horses that are galloping at full pelt around the track. The children compete bareback and with little if any safety kit. Accidents and injuries are common

TOP: Adriansyah rides his horse at Lepadi. …

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