Speed Silks full bodyJockeys aboard Bayern and Goldencents sporting racing’s latest innovation.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014 – Twenty jockeys competing in this year’s Breeders’ Cup races at Santa Anita —including winners Bayern and Goldencents­— were wearing Speed Silks®, a new patent-pending aerodynamically-engineered equine jockey uniform.

Speed Silks is the brand name of a product line consisting of silks, helmet covers, jockey pants and boot sleeves. All Speed Silks gear is form-fitting and made entirely of Aero Dimplex®, a patented technical fabric that’s uniquely textured to reduce drag. Aero Dimplex is the world’s most aerodynamically-efficient fabric between 14 and 47 miles per hour.

Darby Racing Technology, LLC sold the first set of Speed Silks in August of 2013; they have since been worn in multiple graded stakes victories and Triple Crown races. Darby Racing Technology has acquired the likes of Baffert Racing, Conquest Stables LLC, Reddam Racing LLC, Team Valor and many other notable stables and owners as clients.

On Friday, W.C. Racing’s Goldencents won his second consecutive $1-million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) with jockey Rafael Bejarano in Speed Silks. The next day, Kaleem Shah, Inc.’s Bayern earned a victory in the $5-million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) with jockey Martin Garcia wearing Speed Silks gear.

Speed Silks creator Matt Darby says he was thrilled to hear from representatives from both barns, especially since they contacted his company so soon after he opened his doors.

“Glenn Sorgenstein of W.C. Racing called me back in February for a couple of sets. He told me he like the idea behind the technology… and that he thought they looked great, which is a nice bonus.

“Jill Baffert was the person who contacted me from Baffert’s organization, and that was back in November of last year. She had seen one of our ads in Trainer, and likewise appreciated the idea of silks engineered for performance. She ended up ordering sets for a number of Baffert clients in the weeks leading up to the 2014 Kentucky Derby, including Kaleem Shah. Those are the same Speed Silks that Bejarano wore last weekend in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. He’s won a lot of races in those silks, actually.

“On Friday and Saturday [October 31 and November 1], we had 20 jockeys in Speed Silks across 13 races at Santa Anita, and in just the Breeders’ Cup races, we had five on Friday and four on Saturday. That would have been enough to keep me happy, but getting a pair of Grade-1 wins is just incredible.”

Matt Darby and his wife Darci designed Speed Silks over two years, and built the product from the ground up exclusively for use by jockeys. Both their blueprint and manufacturing process allow for seamless designs; no matter how complex the silks pattern, no seams are added to the garment, as the colors are dyed directly onto the Aero Dimplex fabric. The state-of-the-art dye sublimation process allows for very bright, saturated colors and razor sharp detail.

Speed Silks are available with an optional thumb-sleeve cuff, modeled after the jerseys worn by competitive cyclists. Darby says it’s testament to the “form-follows-function” philosophy he stuck to during the design process.

“We even manufacture and sell Speed Silks boot sleeves, which are essentially tubes of black Aero Dimplex fabric that are designed to slide down over the jockey’s boots. The texture of our Aero Dimplex fabric is more aerodynamically efficient than even a perfectly smooth surface…our boot sleeves highlight the fact that you want to get every available square inch of your jockey covered in this stuff.

“Aerodynamic drag has a much, much greater effect on the speed of the horse than a lot of people realize,” Darby says. “The horse has to work much harder to overcome wind resistance than he does to overcome the inertia of his own mass.”

Darby Racing Technology is working with Australian equine equipment and apparel retailer Horsefabulous to bring Speed Silks products to the Asia/Pacific market. The two companies are currently working to have Speed Silks officially approved by Australian horse racing authorities, and have already begun selling Speed Silks gear in New Zealand, with expansion planned soon into Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and of course, Australia.

Matt Darby is available for comment or to answer any questions about Speed Silks, and can be reached at or (806) 570-6920. Visit Speed Silks online at or on Facebook (Speed-Silks) and Twitter (@SpeedSilks).

Kerry and Catherine Jordan of Horsefabulous can be reached at or by phone at +61 2 9613 3265 (Australia). Visit Horsefabulous online at

Speed Silks® is a trademark of Darby Racing Technology, LLC in the U.S. and other countries.


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About Editor

Rich Nilsen is an 18-time qualifier to the National Horseplayers Championship (NHC), an event he has cashed in four times. He was the first player to finish in the top 10 of the NHC twice. A former executive with and a member of the NHC Players’ Committee, Rich is a graduate of the University of Louisville Equine Business Program and is founder of, a site devoted to horse racing education and promotion.

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