Epsom Oaks News: Hollie Doyle hopeful of becoming first woman to win Classic on Nashwa

Hollie Doyle doesn't have much to prove as a leading jockey, never mind a female jockey but a win on Nashwa in the Cazoo Epsom Oaks on Friday, June 3 would be a first for a lady rider.

Hollie Doyle is used to taking on firsts as the UK's premier flat female jockey and she is raring to go in steering Nashwa to Epsom Oaks glory on Friday, June 3.

Doyle has the plum ride of John and Thady Gosden's Frankel filly Nashwa who could well turn over favourite and stablemate Emily Upjohn and turn her into the first woman rider to win a Classic.

"It would be an absolute dream come true" said Doyle. "You're always looking to progress throughout your career and it would be another box ticked,"

"Like Rachael Blackmore winning the Grand National, winning a British Classic is something I dream of doing over the next 10 years or so, so if it could happen on Friday it would be great.

"Look at the reaction there was when Rachael won the Grand National. It's one of the toughest horse races in the world to win and she did that, so if I could win a British Classic it would be a dream come true for me personally and could hopefully inspire other women to get into the sport.

"It's a great opportunity to get a ride with a live chance."

Doyle takes the focus on her sex in her stride now and like, Blackmore, prefers to get on with the job in hand.

"I'm fairly used to it now. Every time I've done something new this is what happens, which is great," said Doyle in a Qipco British Champions Series Zoom call on Monday.

"I'm used to it and take it all in my stride. Ultimately I'm a jockey and I've got a job to do, that's how I approach it."

There are question-marks over Nashwa's stamina for the upper end of middle distance tests but Doyle is optimistic.

She added: "I was very pleased with the performance at Newbury, as at Haydock I kind of gave her a no-excuses ride, jumped out in the box seat and she was a little bit gassy.

"Stepping up into Listed company at Newbury I just wanted to ride her quietly to see how she'd relax and go through the gears and she relaxed beautifully - and was very responsive when I asked her.

"To me there was no definitive answer off the back of that performance whether she'd stay a mile and a half or not, but I think she ticks a lot of boxes that need ticking, so we'll find out won't we?

"I don't see why she won't stay. She relaxes well enough to allow herself to stay that far and give herself the best possible chance.

"A mile and a half around Epsom is a relatively easy 12 furlongs, but there's lots of other variables that you've got to take into consideration."

Doyle got to ride Nashwa in a piece of pre-Epsom work, which only raised her expectations.

She said: "I sat on her yesterday and she's grown a little bit more. It was probably her final piece of work before the Oaks and I couldn't have been happier.

"Every time you get on her there's a bit more that's progressed, so that's great at this stage.

"She's a dream ride really. She's got a lovely mind and a great attitude and I still think she's not the finished article - I think there's more to come from her physically.

"She's everything you want in a racehorse at the moment."

READ MORE: The Epsom Derby 2022 guide: When is it, times, big races, top horses, trainers, jockeys and more

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