A Hollywood fantasy became actuality on Saturday when Rachael Blackmore grew to become the primary feminine jockey to win Britain’s grueling Grand Nationwide horse race, breaking down one of many greatest gender limitations in sports activities.
Blackmore, a 31-year-old Irishwoman, rode Minella Occasions to a landmark victory at odds of 11-1 within the 173rd version of the well-known steeplechase at Aintree in Liverpool, northwest England
“I don’t really feel male or feminine proper now. I don’t even really feel human,” Blackmore stated. “That is simply unbelievable.”
Blackmore is the twentieth feminine jockey to compete in a race that has been a mud-splattered British sporting establishment since 1839. Ladies have solely been allowed to enter the Nationwide as jockeys since 1975, making it a male-dominated occasion — till now.
“I by no means even imagined I might get a experience on this race, by no means thoughts get my palms on the trophy,” Blackmore stated.
In any case, the 1944 Hollywood film “Nationwide Velvet” was the story of a 12-year-old woman, Velvet Brown — performed by a younger Elizabeth Taylor — who received the Grand Nationwide on The Pie, a gelding she received in a raffle and one she determined to coach for the world’s greatest horse race. Within the story, Brown was later disqualified on a technicality, having dismounted earlier than reaching the enclosure.
Although Aintree was with out race-goers due to the pandemic, cheers rang out as Blackmore made her means off the course — nonetheless aboard Minella Occasions — and into the winner’s enclosure. She appeared as if she could not imagine what she had executed.