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Cycling star claims first win as jockey

2016-03-02 18:27
Horse racing (Gallo Images)

London - Britain's two-time Olympic cycling champion Victoria Pendleton stormed to victory aboard Pacha Du Polder at Wincanton on Wednesday to claim her first win since swapping lycra for jockey's silks.

Pendleton, 35, was unseated by the same horse, trained by Paul Nicholls, on her first start under National Hunt Rules at Fakenham 12 days previously.

But she made no mistake in the Betfair Switching Saddles Hunters' Chase, surviving a couple of uncertain jumps to romp to victory by a huge 29 lengths on the nine-year-old 5-4 favourite.

"I really wanted to get round and give the horse the ride he deserved," Pendleton said. "I feel honoured to ride such a wonderful horse."

As a cyclist, Pendleton won nine world titles and three Olympic medals, including golds in the women's sprint at the 2008 Games in Beijing and the Keirin at the 2012 Games in London.

She announced her intention to become a jockey in March last year and has set herself the target of competing in the amateur Foxhunter Chase at this year's Cheltenham Festival on March 18.

"I will do some more point-to-points and see what the experts around me decide and I will go with their choice," Pendleton added. "But I will definitely be riding for the rest of the season."

 

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