Lillian Jenkinson Holder, Horse Racing’s Fearless Lady
by Roger Peach
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Pub Date 20 Feb 2024 | Archive Date 20 Feb 2024
Rowman & Littlefield, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
The first-ever biography of trailblazing horse racer Lillian Jenkinson Holder, who broke the unwritten rule that women could not be jockeys.
More than four decades before women were allowed to ride as licensed jockeys at recognized, pari-mutuel racetracks, a fearless farm girl turned race rider out of Nebraska was beginning her 47-year jockey career at venues beyond the reach of big-time track rules. Her name was Lillian Jenkinson Holder.
In Jockey Queen: Lillian Jenkinson Holder, Horse Racing’s Fearless Lady, Roger Peach tells the remarkable journey of a woman who never gave up on her dream of racing, despite the obstacles thrown in her path. Kept from riding in major races simply because she was a woman, Jenkinson Holder thrived in the gritty world of no-holds-barred “bush track” racing, ultimately competing in an estimated 10,000 races over almost five decades.
Featuring exclusive interviews with Jenkinson Holder’s surviving relatives and with jockeys who rode against her, as well as behind-the-scenes photos from the family’s collection, Jockey Queen is a fascinating glimpse into the cutthroat world of horse racing and the daring woman who defied all expectations.
Roger Peach has worked as a newspaper reporter and feature writer for Times-Commoner (Salem, Illinois), magazine managing editor for Jersey Journal, publisher for Downstate Farmer, and public relations senior writer and account executive with St. Louis-based Drone and Mueller. A journalism graduate of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, he is the author of Swamper Tales. Peach splits time between homes in Columbia, Illinois, and Las Vegas, Nevada.
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