Doyle hoping female influence can continue to grow at Ascot

Rider secured her landmark first winner at the Royal meeting in 2020.

Pa Sport Reporters
Sunday 13 June 2021 16:06
Hollie Doyle is hoping for more Royal Ascot success after opening her account there on Scarlet Dragon last year
Hollie Doyle is hoping for more Royal Ascot success after opening her account there on Scarlet Dragon last year

Female riders are looking to have more mounts than ever at Royal Ascot next week, with Hollie Doyle hoping her exploits, along with those of Hayley Turner will inspire others.

Horse racing is one of the few sports in which men and women compete on level terms and in the past five years, the number of rides for female jockeys during Royal Ascot has increased dramatically from just one in 2016 to 27 last year.

Turner and Doyle are likely to lead the way in 2021 with Nicola Currie, Megan Nicholls and Saffie Osborne also set to be in demand during the five-day festival.

Doyle became the third woman in history to celebrate a win during the prestigious meeting alongside Gay Kelleway and Hayley Turner when winning the Duke of Edinburgh Stakes on Scarlet Dragon in 2020.

Turner also enjoyed a victory aboard Onassis in the Sandringham Stakes last year, becoming the first multiple-winning woman rider at Royal Ascot.

In 2019, she also won the Sandringham on Thanks Be to register a first victory for a female jockey at the Royal Meeting for 32 years since Kelleway. Turner is down to ride the Charlie Fellowes-trained Onassis in the Group Two Duke of Cambridge Stakes on Wednesday.

Doyle told Great British Racing: “It’s great to see that there have been a lot more women competing at Royal Ascot in recent years.

“We are just as good as men given the opportunity and I hope that other women continue to work hard and pursue their dreams of working in racing.

“Riding a winner at a festival like Royal Ascot is a dream come true. I was inspired by Hayley and hope now I can inspire young people too.”

Nicholls, daughter of 12-time champion jumps trainer Paul Nicholls said: “It’s great to have seen Hayley and Hollie enjoy success at Royal Ascot over the last two years and I hope that this inspires other young people to pursue a career in racing.

“There are more and more opportunities for women in racing and their (Hayley and Hollie) success proves that.”