Frost to become the First Winning Female Grand National Jockey?
Despite 16 female jockeys previous trying – we are yet to see a female Grand National Jockey win the world’s most famous steeplechase. Over the years we’ve seen several female trainers of the Grand National – Jenny Pitman, Venetia Williams and, of course, Lucinda Russell, who handled last year’s winner – One For Arthur.
But, that could all change in 2018 as female jumps rider of the moment – BRYONY FROST – has made a big impact this season and certainly has the credentials to go close. Despite having a strong relationship with the powerful Paul Nicholls yard, it’s not surprise due to her amazing season that her services are being snapped-up by other yards as a Grand National Jockey.
At the time of writing, Frost has ridden 31 winners this jumps season and, in the process, has amassed a cool £546k in total prize money. Winning the £1m Randox Grand National would sky-rocket those earnings and also etch her into the Grand National Jockey history books for all-time.
She’s already one of the few female jockeys to win a Cheltenham Festival race after landing the 2017 Foxhunters’ Chase on Pacher Du Polder, plus she was only the second woman to win a Grade One jumps race (Black Corton) in the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase on Boxing Day. Riding at the big jump meetings has become second nature to this 22 year-old.
Despite a lot of jockey’s riding plans unknown for the Grand National we do already know that Frost has been booked to get the leg-up on the Neil King-trained Milansbar.
Bring number 45 of the current list then – yes – connections would need 5 horses above to come out, but that looks very likely. Staying is not an issue either as he’s landed the Classic Chase at Warwick this season over 3m5f, plus he was last seen running second in the Midlands National over 4m2f at Uttoxeter.
He’s set to carry just 10-5, which will feel like a featherweight for this 11 year-old after racing with 11-0+ in his last three outings. While with 11 year-olds winning the Grand National in 2012, 2013 and 2014 then the older horses have shown recently it can be done.
Katie Walsh currently holds the title of being the highest-placed female jockey in the Grand National when finishing third on Seabass in 2012 – she looks set to have a ride in the 2018 race too on Baie Des Iles, who runs for her husband and trainer Ross O’Sullivan.
However, if Frost wins she will also be following in her father footsteps as Jimmy Frost landed the National on Little Polveir in 1989 – the National always seems to throw out a story of some sort each year, so is this to be the 2018 talking point after the race?