Racing Post – Charlie Fellowes on what Khadijah Mellah’s success can do for diversity in horse…

Video from Racing Post. Charlie Fellowes, Chairman of The Henry Cecil Open Weekend, hopes Khadijah Mellah’s success in the Magnolia Cup can help dispel a perceived lack of diversity in horse racing.

The teenager gained worldwide media attention as the first jockey to ride a race in Britain wearing a hijab, when partnering the Charlie Fellowes-trained Haverland to success in the Magnolia Cup at Goodwood.

“It’s an absolutely remarkable story. What she achieved in such a short space of time was incredible. It’s an amazing story for racing,” Fellowes told The Henry Cecil Open Weekend.

“I thought she had no chance! She fell off twice the first morning she was here, but she worked really hard. She was here every day and rode one or two lots, then she’d go back to the British Racing School and ride out two lots. She put in a lot of hard graft and she deserved everything she got.

“I think racing is very diverse. I think it has a poor reputation that it is not and is a bit of a closed shop. I don’t think that’s true. You only have to come to Newmarket to see the multitude of cultures that are part of the racing industry to understand that.

Fellowes believes The Henry Cecil Open Weekend, which will take place on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd September, is the perfect opportunity to see behind the scenes and a great way to entice young people from all backgrounds into the industry.

“It is a brilliant way for us to showcase our industry and let people see behind the scenes. They can meet the people and horses and get more of an understanding of what goes on.

“Sir Henry was particularly passionate about younger people coming through in racing, so the money raised is going to charities that help them; primarily to our main beneficiaries Racing Welfare and the British Racing School.

Race footage courtesy of Racing TV

By JSC Comms

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