Monday 5 April 2021

The First Woman to take Part in the Grand National 1977

It may seem a long time ago. 


I was just seven years of age. A 70s child with long hair, shirts with big collars and my favourite toy was an action man with flexible hands. 

For horse racing fans it was a vintage year. A historic day when Red Rum, trained by Ginger McCain, in the ownership of Noel Le Mare, won the Grand National for the third time ridden by Tommy Stack.

It was a day when a legend came into being. Red Rum the only horse to win the National three times (1973, 1974 & 1977). 

The 1977 Grand National was historic for another. It was the first time a female jockey competed. Charlotte Brew rode her own horse Barony Fort . This was as much to do with the passing of the Sex Discrimination Act 1975. Horse and jockey qualified for entry of the Grand National because Barony Fort finished fourth in the Fox Hunters Chase. 

He refused to jump the 27th fence, just four fences from competing the most grueling contest for horse and jockey.

However, her achievement paved the way for female riders to compete at the highest level.

Times are changing, for the better.

The old days of limitation which saw hundreds of male jockeys ride to success are being surpassed by a league of female riders who relish the opportunity to compete.

Katie Walsh has set the level for others to achieve after she finished third on Seabass in the 2012 Grand National. 

Watch this fascinating video detailed by Betway which tells the history of female jockeys in the Grand National. 

It's only a matter of time before the Grand National tells its greatest story. The first female jockey to win the race of races.     

Get ready for the Aintree Grand National on the 10th April 2021. 

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