Famous Female Jockeys Who Made History

The horse racing world has long been dominated by male jockeys. However, there have also been female jockeys who created a huge name for themselves in this field. These famous women have created history and proved to the world that anything is possible with dedication and hard work. They have won some of the biggest races in the world. Below we have listed some of these amazing women who are a source of huge inspiration for those who have dreams of becoming a jockey one day. But before reading on horse racing enthusiasts can check out the amazing Grand National Betting 2023 offers as a preparation for the mega event.

1- Julie Krone

Julie Krone is one of the most famous names in the world of female horse racing. She was born in Benton Harbor, Michigan in 1963. It is said that Steve Cauthen inspired her to become a jockey. She watched the American win the 1978 Triple Crown and that inspired her to pursue a career in horse racing. Krone made her professional debut in 1981 riding a horse named Tiny Star. It didn’t take her long to win her first race and she quickly became a famous name. The amazing female jockey created history in 1993 when she triumphed in the prestigious Belmont Stakes aboard Colonial Affair. Thus, she became the first and only female jockey to achieve this feat. This wasn’t her only big success as she also won races at Monmouth Park, Gulfstream Park and Atlantic City Race Course. The American won an incredible 3,704 starts, making her one of the most successful female jockeys of all time. Krone retired from the sport in 1999. However, she couldn’t stay out of racing for long and came out of retirement in 2002. She earned the distinction of being the first female to win a Breeders’ Cup race in 2003. But she was forced to finally say goodbye to horse racing in 2004 after suffering some serious injuries. Krone has been inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame. Meanwhile, she has also won ESPN's Professional Female Athlete of the Year.

2- Rachael Blackmore

Rachael Blackmore, who was born in Ireland in 1989, started riding from quite a young age. She also has a degree in equine science from the University of Limerick. The Irish started competing as an amateur jockey even when she was in college. Blackmore claimed her first victory as a professional in 2015. Two years later, she earned the distinction of being the first female to win Ireland’s conditional riders’ championship. The amazing jockey later won the Mares Novice Hurdle Championship Final in 2019. Her incredible successes continued over the years as he won the Irish Champion Hurdle in 2020 and 2021. However, the Irish created history when she became the first woman to win the Grand National in 2021 aboard Minella Times.

3- Michelle Payne

Michelle Payne has also carved out a big name for herself in the female horse racing world. Born in 1985, she is the youngest of ten children. The Australian had an inclination towards horse racing from the very beginning and it is said that she told her friends that she would one day win the Melbourne Cup. 

Payne made her professional racing debut when she was only 15. Her first victory came aboard Reigning at Ballarat. She was 18 when she suffered a serious injury during a race but she managed to recover soon. 

Payne recorded her name in history books in 2015 when she became the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup. She shocked everyone by finishing the race first aboard Prince of Penzance at odds of 100-1. The Australian has emerged victorious in over 700 starts in her career so far. 

Payne is also a successful trainer and has trained over 30 winners so far. She has been inducted into the Australian Racing Hall of Fame. The 36-year-old has also won several prestigious awards, including the Longines Ladies Award and the Don Award at the Sports Australia Hall of Fame awards. 

Payne is a great inspiration for women, as well as for the readers of horseracinginsider, who want to pursue a career in horse racing. A feature film, named Ride Like a Girl, is based on her story which was first released in September 2019.