• Sat. Oct 29th, 2022

Blackmore claimed her first victory in February 2011, before going on to turn professional in March 2015

Apr 11, 2021

Rachel Blackmore made a historic achievement at the Aintree Racecourse yesterday, becoming the first female jockey to win the Grand National. Blackmore took home the trophy on 11/1 shot Minella Times.
From previous victories at the Cheltenham festival last month, where again she became the first female jockey to win the Champion Hurdle with victory on Honeysuckle.
But what else do we know about this champion jockey?
The 31 year old Blackmore comes from Killenaule in County Tipperary, her parents working as a dairy farmer and a school teacher.
In her school days, Rachel had aspired to be a vet, getting a degree in equine science and combining her studies with riding out and competing as an amateur jockey.
Despite not growing up around horses, Blackmore claimed her first victory in February 2011, before going on to turn professional in March 2015.
Jockey Rachael Blackmore with An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar after winning with Notebook. (Image: INPHO/Morgan Treacy)
She told the Irish Daily Mirror that “this was never even a dream. It was so far from what I ever thought could happen in my life, after her Cheltenham festival victory.
You cant do it without getting on the right horses, Ive been extremely lucky in that sense and getting linked up with [Honeysuckles trainer] Henry de Bromhead, you need to be riding those horses and thats a massive part of any jockeys career, being in the right place at the right time and getting linked up with the right yard.
“It doesn’t matter what you are. We are jockeys. It is just a privilege to be here.
“To young people out there, male, female, whatever, if you want to do something, go and do it because to me, standing here right now, literally anything can happen.
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With winning comes public interest in Blackmores personal life, but the jockey has been dating fellow racer Brian Hayes,
Although Blackmore has yet to confirm details of her relationship, it was Patrick Mullins, himself a legacy jockey as son of jumps trainer Willie Mullins, who first shed light on Blackmores personal life with the Guardian .
He told the newspaper that when he first moved in with Blackmore and Hayes that he would mostly go racing with Hayes in those early days.
The Shunter (Image: Seb Daly/Sportsfile via Getty Images)
Commitment to competition
While Blackmore is illusive on the details of her personal life, she is more than happy to talk about her genuine passion for racing and competing professionally.
She has given many interviews over the years, after festivals, in which she speaks of her joy and privilege at being able to compete.
Jockey Rachael Blackmore after winning the Grand National (Image: Getty Images)
After her historic win yesterday, she told reporters: I just cannot believe it.
I’m so lucky to be riding [Minella Times] and I just can’t believe we’re after winning the Grand National. This is unbelievable.
[Minella Times] was just incredible. He jumped beautifully and I was trying to wait for as long as I could.
“I didn’t feel I was running away with it across the Melling Road, but when we jumped the last and I asked him for a bit he was there. It was just incredible.
“It is phenomenal for the sport and going to take the sport to a different level.”
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