Grand National winner Rachael Blackmore is favourite to add the World Sport Star accolade to her stellar CV at the 2021 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards.
The Irish jockey became the first woman to win the iconic Aintree race with her victory aboard the Henry de Bromhead-trained Minella Times in April.
Voting has opened for the World Sport Star of the Year category at the 2021 awards, with Rachael heading the betting as odds-on favourite on a number of betting sites.
The six-strong line-up also features tennis legend Novac Djokovic, athlete Elaine Thompson-Herah – the first woman to complete the Olympic sprint “double double” – the first undisputed super-middleweight boxing champion of all time Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, Formula 1’s Max Verstappen and American football star Tom Brady.
Voting closes at 1pm Tuesday (14 December) and the winner will be revealed live on the BBC Sports Personality of the Year show on Sunday, 19 December.
The shortlist for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2021 will also be announced on Tuesday.
Rachael’s monumental achievements in the saddle this year include Champion Hurdle victory, aboard Honeysuckle, at the Cheltenham Festival. Her six victories at the Festival in March – five of which were Grade Ones – earned her the leading jockey title.
As well as her achievements on British courses, Rachael also scored her second Irish Champion Hurdle, first Punchestown Champion Hurdle and third Hatton’s Grace Hurdle wins this year with Honeysuckle, plus the Slaney Novice Hurdle on Bob Olinger.
The last time a racing figure won the World Sport Star award was in 1967, when eminent Australian jockey and later trainer George Moore lifted the trophy.
Sir AP McCoy won the 2010 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award, coming third in 2013 and receiving the lifetime achievement award in 2015. Princess Anne and Zara Phillips won in 1971 and 2006 respectively for eventing.
Other riders to make the shortlist in recent years include Nick Skelton and Sophie Christiansen in 2016. Hollie Doyle was the most recent connection to the horse world to feature in the running for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year, finishing third in the 2020 edition.
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