Bryony Frost has become the first woman jockey to win one of Britain’s biggest races, the King George VI Chase, by riding 20-1 shot Frodon to victory over the fences in an impressive front-running display.
Frost’s win gave trainer Paul Nicholls a record-extending 12th victory in the prestigious post-Christmas steeplechase at Kempton Park.
Frodon – one of Nicholls’ four runners – dictated the pace of the 4.8-kilometre jumps contest after going out in front early and jumped excellently throughout under the 25-year-old Frost.
Clan Des Obeaux, another horse trained by Nicholls, was going for a third straight victory in the race.
The 85-40 shot – one of the two favourites – moved to challenge with two fences left but Frost coaxed Frodon into a strong finish, ending up three lengths clear of Waiting Patiently, a 12-1 shot. Clan Des Obeaux was third.
It was more racing history for Frost, who was the first female jockey to ride a top-level Grade One winner at the Cheltenham Festival – also on Frodon.
“The dark days, the hard words you get thrown at you, to gallop round there with him – he has just smashed everybody’s expectations,” Frost said.
“I got some amazing jumps from him. He’s what you dream of as a little girl – absolutely epic.”
There were no spectators present at Kempton because of the coronavirus pandemic for a race which usually attracts about 20,000 fans.