On your marks – jockeys ready to race for Macmillan Charity Raceday

Macmillan Ride of Their Lives 2019.jpg

Amateur riders are one day away from taking on Macmillan Charity Raceday at York Racecourse on Saturday, 15 June – the largest charity raceday in British horseracing.

Months of hard work in gyms and early morning rides on the gallops have led to the Ernest Cooper Macmillan ‘Ride of Their Lives’– a charity horse race raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support.

To help them prepare, the riders gathered at York Racecourse last Friday, 7June, to meet former champion jockey Kevin Darley, who walked the course with them and passed on top tips.  

Earlier in the day, the group were put through a fitness test at Jack Berry House, a jockey rehabilitation and fitness centre in Malton.

This followed last month’s challenging‘Rider Assessment Day’ at the Northern Racing College in Doncaster, which ensured the amateur jockeys had both the strength and skill to handle racing thoroughbreds.

Lady Halifax preparing for the race

Lady Halifax preparing for the race

All of the riders have pledged to raise a minimum of £3,000 for Macmillan to take part. 

The Countess of Halifax has been involved with Macmillan Cancer Support since the late 1970s and has served as its president since 2002. At 70 years old she will be taking on her first ever horse race, as one of the jockeys at the event.

Having watched the race from the stands for the last seven years, Lady Halifax said: “I’ve always thought, ‘I couldn’t do that in a million years’ – and I still have lots of moments wondering what on earth I’m doing!”

Visit the website to support the riders’ fundraising. 

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