Grand National Jockey: Lizzie Kelly
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Lizzie Kelly is the most well-known British female jumps jockey. She has had some high profile wins in televised racing and the coverage is positive. The jockey is personable and promotes women jockeys well. She is the equivalent of Hayley Turner on the Flat. Kelly’s association with Tea For Two has given her prominence. That horse ran in the Cheltenham Gold Cup and won a Grade 1 chase at the Aintree Grand National meeting.
Lizzie Kelly Career
Kelly often rides horses owned by her mother which provides another element to her story and position in jumps racing in the UK. At the moment Kelly is the British female jockey with the best chance of winning the Grand National.
Kelly is an experienced rider in major races in England and France. She finished second on a horse called Aubusson in the 2015 Grand Prix d’Automne at Auteil which is the best finishing position for a lady jumps jockey at Grade 1 level in France. Tea For Two won the Grade 1 Kauto Star Novices’ Chase on Boxing Day 2015 ridden by Kelly. The horse is owned by her mother and trained by her step father.
Unfortunately, the horse unseated Kelly at the first fence in the 2016 Cheltenham Gold Cup. The partnership gained compensation by winning the Betfair Bowl at Aintree the following month. Kelly’s first Cheltenham Festival win was on Coo Star Sivola in 2017. She finished seventh on Tea For two in the Cheltenham Gold Cup in the same year. She rode a second festival winner in 2019, on Sirah Du Lac in a handicap chase.
Over the last five seasons and at the time of writing, Kelly has ridden 54 winners from 401 ides which represents a decent strike rate of 13%. Her win record in different types of races is as follows: hurdle 34, chase 16, National Hunt Flat 4. She has earned over £1 million in win and place money for the connections of her rides. Kelly has a record of 71 wins over her riding career which began in the 2009/10 season.
She would make headlines all around the world if she added to that tally by winning the Grand National. The best finishing position by a lady rider in the race is third place achieved by Katie Walsh riding Seabass in 2012. Kelly has the contacts and ability to get decent rides in the most famous steeplechase in the world.
Lizzie Kelly Trivia
Lizzie Kelly comes across well in interviews on television. She has the confidence to compete against the best male riders and her association with Tea For Two has given her great publicity. The story is enhanced by the fact that she rides horse owned by her mother and trained by her step father.
In addition to Tea For Two’s races, Kelly had a major success on Agrapart in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury in 2016. The race is the richest handicap hurdle in Europe. Kelly was born in 1993 but there are few other details of her private life in the mainstream media. She is based in Devon and had ambitions to become a professional jockey when still a schoolgirl.
Lizzie Kelly’s Record In The Grand National
Lizzie Kelly has been only once for now a Grand National jockey. She pulled up Tea For Two at the 29th fence in 2019. There are 30 fences in the Grand National so Kelly was close to completing the course. The horse had tired and pulling up Tea For Two was the right thing to do in the circumstances. Her mount, aged 10 at the time, carried 10 stone 9 pounds and the Starting Price was 25/1.