First lady returns
Island’s only female jockey Georgina Sergeon returns to race riding after recovering from major fall
AFTER being out of the saddle for just over two years, Georgina Sergeon, Jamaica's only female jockey, returns to competitive race riding tomorrow. Sergeon is listed on the 10-race programme to ride two horses, Good Life for trainer Fitzgerald Richards and Quiet Ruler for Charles Morrissey.
Sergeon's remarkable return after a horrific fall speaks to her dogged determination to continue plying her beloved trade. She has been on the exercise track in the mornings on a regular basis since October of last year and is eager to ride in actual races where she can really test her fitness and her resolve.
The date of January 21, 2012 will remain etched in the memory of Georgina Sergeon. It was on that day in the seventh race that she fell from her mount Tricky Train while negotiating the turn for home after a collision with Dolla Win. After that Sergeon underwent surgery for the multiple injuries she received from the fall, especially on her back, and an even more excruciating period of physiotherapy and recuperation.
"It was not easy. It was painful. I had doubts of ever riding again but I kept hoping and praying that I would recover enough to ride, which is what I really, really want to do," said the country's only female rider.
To get to the point where she has been cleared by her doctors to get into the saddle again on a competitive basis, Sergeon has had to put in very strenuous work. She first went on a horse again in October of last year and has been doing her rounds in the gym to improve her general strength while placing special emphasis on doing push-ups which are aimed at building strength in her arms.
"I have been at the track on a regular basis since October 2013. I have been doing the basics, hacking and trotting horses while I continue to develop my strength by running around the racetrack and doing my scheduled exercises in the gym. It has been a tough, tough road to reach to this stage but I had to do it because I want to ride," said the lady who is by far the leading female rider produced locally, with 55 wins to her credit.
Sergeon, who says she is ready and feeling good for her assignments tomorrow, had special praises for those who assisted her in her comeback.
"There are a number of persons, my family, some of my friends and those from the track who have helped me to this point. But I would like to single out champion trainer Wayne DaCosta. He has been a tower of strength, and without him being there for me every step of the way, it would have been even harder for me," said the first lady of local racing.