Exeter Racecourse has announced that one of the sport’s brightest talents, Bryony Frost, is the racecourse’s new ambassador for 2018.
Devon born and bred Frost has witnessed a meteoric rise to fame this season and on Boxing Day became only the second female jockey in Britain to win a top-class race over obstacles when she steered Black Corton to success in the Kauto Star Novice Chase at Kempton.
But her roots are firmly set in Devon and the 22-year-old expressed her delight at coming on board with her local racecourse. “To work with Exeter, which is just down the road from where I was born and brought up, is fantastic. I’ve been coming here since I was a child and to be the ambassador is really cool. I’ve ridden a few winners at Exeter and it’s a great course where lots of my friends regularly go racing. I love riding there too.”
Frost’s role will include a regular blog that will appear on the racecourse’s website and in local papers and making appearances on family day, ladies night and when her racing schedule allows.
“I’m really looking forward to it,” she said adding, “I love talking to kids about racing and stopping for a chat with people. If it can get more people interested about racing it has to be a good thing.”
Frost’s father Jimmy was successful in the 1989 Grand National riding Little Polveir and on Morley Street in the Champion Hurdle in 1991. He rode his last ever winner at Exeter Racecourse on Bohill Lad in 2002. Her brother Hadden was also a successful jockey and partnered Buena Vista to victory in the Pertemps Final at the 2010 Cheltenham Festival and now sources and breaks in horses.
Bryony started riding the yard’s donkey, Nosey, before she could walk, and was hunting with the Dartmoor Hunt by the time she was four, sticking close to the then master and huntsman Mike Weir. She recalls: “I was his shadow and it really taught me everything about riding and how to look after horses properly riding across Dartmoor’s tough country. I always admired the way the hounds looked up to Mike. He taught me how to think fast going over the bogs and the difficult terrain, he taught me good horsemanship and Dartmoor’s weather really toughened me up.”
Bryony started in pony races when she was just nine-years-old before she graduated to point-to-points notching up 55 wins between the flags and winning the National Novice title when she was 17. This year she won the St James Place Foxhunter at the Cheltenham Festival and then turned professional in July.
Exeter’s General Manager Jack Parkinson said: “We’re so pleased that Bryony has come on board at Exeter as our ambassador. She and her family are incredibly popular here and we’re very proud that we will be working closely with Bryony to bring both racing and non-racing folk alike an insight into life as a leading lady jockey. What she has achieved is incredible and long may her success continue.”
Exeter Racecourse is part of The Jockey Club, which has been at the heart of British racing for more than 260 years. Today the largest commercial group in the sport, The Jockey Club runs the largest racecourse group in the UK by turnover (2014: £162.9m), courses (15) including those at Aintree, Cheltenham, Epsom Downs and Newmarket, attendances (2014: 1.8m), total prize money (2014: £43.7m), contribution to prize money (2014: £19.1m) and quality racing (Group and Graded races); more than 3,000 acres of world-class training grounds in Newmarket, Lambourn and Epsom Downs; The National Stud breeding enterprise and education provider; and the charity for racing's people in need, Racing Welfare. Governed by Royal Charter, every penny The Jockey Club makes it puts back into British racing. More information is available at www.thejockeyclub.co.uk.