Rachael Blackmore admits to sleepless night as she relived Aintree heroics

Grand National winner says ‘racing keeps you grounded – it doesn’t let you get carried away’

Rachael Blackmore celebrates winning the  Grand National  on Minella Times at Aintree, Liverpool, on  Saturday. Photograph: Tim Goode/PA Wire

Rachael Blackmore celebrates winning the Grand National on Minella Times at Aintree, Liverpool, on Saturday. Photograph: Tim Goode/PA Wire

 

Grand National winner Rachael Blackmore admits she was unable to sleep on Saturday night as she relived her Aintree heroics.

Just weeks after breaking boundaries at the Cheltenham Festival by being crowned the leading rider in the Cotswolds, Blackmore outdid even that on Merseyside.

Riding Minella Times in the most famous race in the world, 44 years after Charlotte Brew (now Budd) partnered the 250-1 shot Barony Fort to become the first female to ride in the race, Blackmore created history.

While she would rather not focus on the issue of gender, she acknowledges that whatever she had previously achieved in her career, the recognition as a Grand National winner is on a completely different level.

“I’ve rewatched it a few times, and I didn’t sleep at all on Saturday night – that’s the kind of high you are on,” Blackmore told Radio 4.

“For me, in racing, the gender thing was never an issue – and I’ve just carried that forward. There’s no taking away from the fact that it wasn’t that long ago people were saying women shouldn’t ride in the National – but personally it’s never been an experience I’ve had, and it should be something that racing is very proud of.”

Despite her headline-grabbing success, Blackmore will not be getting too carried away.

“The one thing that you learn very quickly [in racing] is that you lose a lot more than you win. You’ll have falls, disappointments and you are living for the days when it does work out – days like Saturday. It erases all the other days very quickly.”

Champion jockey

Just about the only thing Blackmore has got wrong in recent years is her choice of mount in the Gold Cup at Cheltenham, when she passed over eventual winner Minella Indo for A Plus Tard – who finished on his tail in second.

With Paul Townend currently sidelined by a foot injury, Blackmore has 10 winners to find to draw level with him in the race to be Ireland’s champion jockey.

She added: “I never set myself massive targets and I’m not going to start now. I just have to take every day as it comes, try to get the best out of every horse each day.

“Of course I’d love to win the Gold Cup, but that is not something that I sit down and target at the start of the year.

“Racing keeps you grounded – it doesn’t let you get carried away. You might have ridden a winner, but then in the next race you get unseated at the first. So racing never lets you get carried away.”

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.