Hayley Turner, the joint champion UK apprentice jockey in 2005, is generally acknowledged as the most promising female rider to emerge in the 400‑year history of the Sport of Kings in this country.
Born on 3 January, 1983, in Nottingham, Turner was taught to ride by her mother, a riding instructor. She started riding out for trainer Mark Polglase, who supplied her first winner, Generate, at Pontefract on 4 June, 2000. She also attended the Northern Racing College, and then was apprenticed to Michael Bell in Newmarket.
Turner became the first woman to be crowned champion apprentice when partnering 44 winners during the 2005 Flat (turf) season ‑ sharing the title with Saleem Golam. She also became only the fourth woman in Britain to ride out her claim, following Alex Greaves, Emma O’ Gorman and Lisa Jones.
She has ridden in Dubai over the winter months, including for Godolphin. Her success during the 2005 season led to Turner being awarded a Lester for apprentice jockey of the year ‑ the first woman ever to land the award.
Turner competed in the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup in 2006 and nearly won the Shergar Cup Mile when going down by a short‑head on Tucker. She has ridden just under 270 winners in the past five seasons.
She enjoyed her first victory in the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup in 2007 when she won the Barclays Shergar Cup Juvenile with 33/1 chance Relative Order and finished second behind Australian Hugh Bowman in the Silver Saddle standings. Turner was also on the mark last season when triumphing aboard Gee Dee Nen in the Carvill Shergar Cup Stayers.
In 2008, she became the first female jockey to partner 100 winners in a calendar year in Britain. Turner was forced to miss four months of the current Flat season after an incident on the Newmarket gallops on 3 March, when catapulted from the horse she was riding and knocked unconscious. Turner’s injuries – bruising to the brain – were originally considered serious enough that her licence was suspended for a year. However, following an appeal hearing at the BHA on 9 July, she was declared fit to resume race riding and was back in action at Ascot the following day, finishing second on her return aboard the Bell-trained Prompter.
Turner captains the GB team for the second time, following her debut in the role last year.
Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup 2009 – Great Britain Captain
2009: Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup wins (2): 2007 Relative Order; 2008 Gee Dee Nen
Quick Guide to the annual Shergar Cup