So you’re a jockey?I started training on the horses when I was 14 years old. This is going to be my third year that I’m racing.

I know I’m not supposed to ask this of a woman, but how tall are you and how much do you weigh?I’m 160 centimeters (5 feet, 4 inches). I’m between 110 and 114 pounds. In the winter, I put on a few more pounds.

Do you have to diet?Not really. I watch what I eat, but it’s not too hard. When I go back and start training and riding horses, it’s not hard (to keep the weight down) at all.

How popular is horse racing in Hungary?Not as much as in the past. It’s not a full house (in the stands). But on the big days, a lot of people come.

And what are the big days?The Hungarian Derby. It’s in June. In Budapest. At Kincsem Park (named after a horse). She was a really famous horse in Hungary. She won almost everything.

How much money do you earn?I’m an amateur. We don’t get profit. Even when we win, we don’t get any money. We have a rule that until you win at least 10 races, you can’t use whips. I’ve won five. In 28 races.

If you don’t get paid, then why do it?I love it. The relationship with the horse. And the racing spirit. All the races I’ve won, I was racing with pros. And I could only use my hand!

How did you get started?My sister (Marti) always loved horses. I was a dog person. One day, her and my mother were riding bicycles on the way to my grandmother’s house and passed a training ground. She asked if she could ride and bring me as well. I fell in love with the horses. I’d get up every morning and I would ride one or two of the horses before school.

How did you meet your husband?I was working here in Italy at a club five years ago. I wasn’t making enough money in Hungary. I had a friend who was working there and she told me they were looking for people to work there. I had studied Italian in school. He spoke a little Italian. And he also spoke a few words in Hungarian. Mostly the bad words. I only spoke a few words of English. I learned mostly from the movies. We could understand each other, but no one else could understand us. We have an almost 4-year-old son, Michael.

Do your husband or son go to watch your races?No one can go but my sister. My first four races, everyone came out and watched me, but I didn’t do good. My fifth race, only my sister came and I won. And nobody can bet on the horse I’m riding or I’ll get jinxed. We have a TV station that shows the races, so my family watches that. My husband can watch online (at

How long do you plan to be a jockey?We leave here in July and go to Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. I hear they don’t have any races there. If I can find a stable in America, then, yes, I would like to work there and become a pro.

Interviewed by Kent Harris at Aviano Air Base, Italy.

Judit DickinsonAge: 26

Title: Mom and military spouse at Aviano Air Base, Italy

Her husband, Tech. Sgt. Keith Dickson, is assigned to the 31st Aircraft Maintenance Squadron. (Alternative career: During several months of the year, she’s a jockey — riding race horses in her native country.)

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