Rachael Blackmore becomes first woman to win Champion Hurdle

Rachael Blackmore becomes first woman to win Champion Hurdle

RACHAEL BLACKMORE has made history by becoming the first woman to win the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham.

The Tipperary woman was paired up with the majestic Honeysuckle, who ran a magnificent race to make history on Tuesday.

A breathless Blackmore was clearly delighted after the race, saying: "Absolutely incredible – I'm speechless to be honest. I really am. I can't believe we just won a Champion Hurdle – it’s incredible."

Showing incredible humility in the interview, even her use of the word "we" shows just how modest this incredible talent is.

And horseracing legend AP McCoy was happy to give her her flowers, saying: "She walks the walk more than she talks the talk.

"I thought it would be really hard for a girl to be champion jockey, but she could easily be. She's got it all. She's as good as any girl I've ever seen on a horse."

It was a strong day for the Irish, with trainer Willie Mullins getting off to a flying start in the first race of the festival thanks to a convincing win for Appreciate It.

The horse was ridden by Corkman Paul Townend, who helped the horse glide to victory with ease in the Novices Hurdle.