Guided by National Steeplechase Association officers, The Steeplechase Fund continues to provide multiple layers of safety-net assistance to the sport’s participants—as it has since the charitable fund’s founding in 1953.
While benefits of The Steeplechase Fund are available to all present and former jump-racing participants, its resources largely have been directed to jockeys injured in NSA-sanctioned races in recent decades, and it is widely known as the injured jockeys fund. Since 1998, The Steeplechase Fund has covered nearly $200,000 in medical expenses for jockeys.
The Steeplechase Fund and the NSA provide three layers of safety-net protection for the sport’s jockeys. The first layer, initiated in 2011, is to require that all licensed jockeys carry health-care insurance. If the health-care policy does not cover some costs, including deductibles and co-pays, the jockey may submit those bills to The Steeplechase Fund for reimbursement.
The second layer also was initiated in 2011 when the NSA obtained blanket accident-insurance coverage for all jockeys in sanctioned races. The policy provides up to $1-million in medical coverage and $200 weekly disability payments for up to two years.
The NSA commits 60% of each jockey’s annual license fee to the blanket accident coverage. The remainder of the premium is paid by The Steeplechase Fund. The premium exceeds $25,000 annually, and The Steeplechase Fund picks up more than half of that expense.
Finally, The Steeplechase Fund provides assistance grants to injured jockeys and other industry participants who are unable to work. Those grants are considered on a case-by-case basis and have totaled more than $75,000 since 2001.
The Steeplechase Fund is administered by a board of trustees comprising the NSA’s president, vice president, and treasurer. It is sustained by its modest investment portfolio and by donations from concerned individuals. As a 501 (c) (3), charitable entity, all donations are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by the federal tax code.
To make a donation to The Steeplechase Fund, please contact the NSA office at (410) 392-0700.