'I don’t even feel human': Rachael Blackmore makes history as first woman to win Grand National

‘I don’t even feel human’: Rachael Blackmore makes history as first woman to win Grand National

Rachael Blackmore

Irish jockey Rachael Blackmore has made history as the first woman to ever win the Grand National, the world’s most famous steeplechase. On Saturday, she won the 173rd edition of the race on Minella Times, at odds of 11-1.

“I don’t feel male or female right now. I don’t even feel human,” Blackmore said. “This is just unbelievable.”

“I don’t even know if I am Rachael Blackmore anymore! I never even thought about having a ride in the race let alone win it when I started out in 2011.”

Blackmore is just the 20th female jockey to compete in the Grand National since its inception in 1839. The race is the most watched horse race in the world, and women have only been allowed to enter since 1975. Her win is an historic moment for gender equality in sport.

“I never even imagined I’d get a ride in this race, never mind get my hands on the trophy,” Blackmore said.

“It’s unbelievable. It’s just incredible. I just got such an unbelievable passage through the race. Minella Times just jumped fantastic and brought me from fence to fence.”

Former jockey Katie Walsh, who previously held the record as the highest-placed female jockey at the Grand National after finishing third in 2012, said Blackmore’s win was inspirational.

“This is the most-watched race in the world, there are people who are going to hear about this in all different parts of the world and it’s just brilliant for horseracing and I’m delighted for Rachael,” Walsh said.

“She’s an inspiration to male and female jockeys. The result couldn’t have been any better.”

Just three weeks ago, Blackmore also cemented her place in history when she became the first woman to finish as the leading jockey at the prestigious Cheltenham Festival.

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