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Olympic star Victoria Pendleton makes debut as jockey at Newbury Racecourse

Golden girl finishes eighth in first race after swapping saddles

Dan Cooper

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Dan Cooper

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Olympic star Victoria Pendleton makes debut as jockey at Newbury Racecourse

DOUBLE Olympic gold medallist Victoria Pendleton has told the Newbury Weekly News that she is "relieved she didn't finish last" after making her debut as a jockey at Newbury Racecourse last night.

Britain's most successful female Olympian finished eighth on board 8-1 shot Mighty Mambo, which is trained by Oxfordshire-based Lawney Hill, in her first race since switching saddles.

Pendleton underwent four months of intensive training ahead of the George Frewer Charity Race over one mile and five furlongs.

Speaking to the NWN after the race, she said: “It just happened so quickly and I was just really annoyed that I was right at the back and on the wrong side when the flag went down.

"I was like, ‘Oh, pants’. I had a lot of work to do before I’d even started but I guess you live and you learn.

“My aim for it was just to get through, not look out of place, which I hope I didn’t, I haven’t seen it yet. I didn’t fall off, yes! And I got to the end and I wasn’t last, yay."

Trainer Lawney Hill said: "It was like watching one of my own children out there. I think she did well and certainly didn't look out of place.

"She's already come to me saying 'I did this and that wrong' which is good because she's already recognising the small mistakes she's making without me having to tell her."

For the full interview with Victoria Pendleton, see next week's Newbury Weekly News, out on Thursday July 9.

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