A FEMALE jockey who almost quit social media over awful abuse has been tipped to become the next big thing in racing by Ruby Walsh.
The legendary rider was blown away with Lily Pinchin’s win on Dame Du Soir at Cheltenham last weekend.
Pinchin celebrates after notching her biggest winner yet at Cheltenham
She has been labelled the ‘next generation of female riders’ by legendary jockey Walsh
That was Pinchin’s first professional victory at the home of jumps – and a ride that caught the eye of Walsh on Racing TV’s Road to Cheltenham.
But for all her success in the saddle, Lily told Sun Racing last year that the stick she got from some bitter punters over losing rides was almost too much.
She said: “The other day I was saying to my mum, ‘I can’t deal with it, I want to delete Twitter’.
“When you’ve ridden a horse and you’ve just got beat, there is no one in the world who feels worse than you do.
“So when you go on your phone and you read those sorts of abusive comments, they make you feel awful.
“Twitter can be brilliant, some of the positive feedback I’ve got from people after a winner is amazing.
“But when something doesn’t work out, the people who have lost their bet give you a lot of abuse.
“It’s not good for jockeys. Some can just brush it off but for a lot of people it can really affect and upset you.”
Browse Twitter now, however, and its awash with punters praising her for her skill in the saddle.
One of those going a step further and labelling her the “next generation” of female riders is Walsh.
Commenting on that Cheltenham win in the Class 2 Mares’ Handicap Chase, he said: “I thought Lily was very, very good on Dame Du Soir at Cheltenham.
“Ben Poste was very good in front (on Marta Des Mottes) – but Cheltenham is an easy place to get sucked into asking for an effort too soon.
“But to me, she had Ben covered and she kept waiting on the opposition behind her.
“It’s easy to say that’s how you should do it… but when you’re actually doing it, to have the confidence to wait is a hard thing to do.
“I don’t know what the polite way of putting this is, but I do think she is the next generation of female riders.
“There is no difference when you watch Lily Pinchin to Ben Poste.
“You would never say they’re two people of different genders.”
Such high praise puts Pinchin on the path to emulating the likes of Rachael Blackmore.
A trailblazer over jumps, she became the first woman to win the Grand National with victory on Minella Times in 2021.
Similarly on the Flat, Hollie Doyle has become a household name and was third in the 2020 BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.