Re­defin­ing the rac­ing land­scape

The Western Star - - ADVERTISIN­G FEATURE - Joseph Bar­clay Joseph.Bar­[email protected]­by­her­ald.com.au

WHEN Michelle Payne crossed the fin­ish line of the Mel­bourne Cup in 2015, she cre­ated his­tory for fe­males in the horse rac­ing in­dus­try sig­nalling the be­gin­ning of a new era.

Payne was able to open doors that pre­vi­ously didn’t seem fea­si­ble and women in rac­ing will hope­fully reap the ben­e­fits of her tri­umph for decades to come.

As his­toric as her win was, there have been a great num­ber of women who have been stal­warts in the rac­ing in­dus­try well be­fore Prince of Pen­zance’s win at Flem­ing­ton, many of whom are at the heart of coun­try rac­ing.

Void of the glitz and glam­our that comes with a metropoli­tan meet, there are an abun­dance of coun­try fe­male train­ers, jock­eys and own­ers who have es­tab­lished a lengthy and suc­cess­ful ca­reer with­out the heap­ing praise, and the Su­rat re­gion is no ex­cep­tion.

One such woman who has stood the test of time in Roma is owner Amy Webb, who has been in­volved in the

❝I have been around horses my en­tire life, more so from a so­cial as­pect of go­ing to meets when I was younger and from there I de­vel­oped a real pas­sion for the sport.

town’s rac­ing in­dus­try for the bet­ter part of 15 years.

“I have been around horses my en­tire life, more so from a so­cial as­pect of go­ing to meets when I was younger and from there I de­vel­oped a real pas­sion for the sport,” she said.

Asked as to what has been a big rea­son for in­creased women rep­re­sen­ta­tion in rac­ing, Mrs Webb al­luded to fe­males earn­ing no­to­ri­ety the right way, through per­for­mance and a strong com­mit­ment to the pro­fes­sion.

— Amy Webb

“There’s def­i­nitely more in­volve­ment from women in rac­ing these days, I think when it comes to say, jock­eys, phys­i­cally they are sought-af­ter be­cause of their lighter frames,” she said.

“On top of that, some­one like Michelle Payne win­ning the Mel­bourne Cup ex­cited so many young women around the coun­try and in­stilled in them a be­lief that they could do any­thing, and that a fu­ture in the rac­ing in­dus­try was a real pos­si­bil­ity.”

With ex­pe­ri­enced and prom­i­nent fig­ures such as Amy Webb and many like her in­volved in coun­try rac­ing, pros­per­ous years for the sport in town’s like Roma are likely to oc­cur.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

SUC­CESS IN NUM­BERS: The own­ers (in­clud­ing Amy Webb), jockey and trainer of the horse Hot Vinni.

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