Teenager Wins World’s Longest Horse Race

Teenager Wins World’s Longest Horse RaceIt’s not uncommon for people to associate horse racing with men – so it is definitely exciting news to hear about Lara Prior Palmer’s latest achievement.  Lara became the first ever British, first female and the youngest rider (aged 19) to win the world’s longest horse race. Now that’s 3 achievements all in one!

The race we speak of is the 1,000km Mongol Derby – which takes their riders over Mongolia.  There was an interesting twist to the race as the American Devon Horn actually crossed the end line first, so Lara thought it was all over – but later the winning horse failed a vet inspection at which point it incurred a 2 hour penalty – leaving Lara the winner.  Lara Prior Palmer has sports in her blood – she is the niece of Lucinda Green who is the Olympic silver medalist in Equestrian.  It seems these guys have some great genes!

Lara said of her win: “I really can’t believe it. I came into the first station last because my horse was so slow and I had to walk him in. I thought that would be the end of my Mongol Derby. I knew that there were 30 people and nearly all of those 30 wanted to win and I really just wanted to finish.

If you compare my first few days to my last few days, I was going so much slower and suddenly I just got the hang of it and how to ride the horses and what to do to catch up with the rest.”

The race took over 6 days to complete and is based on the ancient postal system of Genghis Khan which is a network of 25 horse stations located in the Mongolian Steppe.  At each station – the riders change their horse (each station is roughly 40km apart) – and are taken in by the local families that are home to the horses and run the stations.

As you can imagine it really is a difficult race to run – so much so that out of the 30 competitors nearly half of them had to stop.  Lucinda stated:

“I sent her off with my Gatehouse helmet, some Tubigrips and something called Monkey Butt cream that I was given in Kenya for the saddle sores.”

“Before she left I told her ‘you might not finish but it will still be an amazing experience’. So for her to win is just unbelievable, it is a seriously tough event.”

We can’t be sure that the Monkey Butt cream helped Lara on her way to win her race – but we are sure that Lucinda is extremely proud of her niece for not just coming through but winning the race.  The first 5 riders to cross the winning line were female riders with Clare Temlow who is the fiancée of the National Hunt trainer coming in third.  Well done Lara!

John Richmere first started writing about sports as a hobby. However, his work rapidly found an audience on some of the internet’s leading blogs and websites. Today John’s writing mainly focuses on his first love – horseracing.

Editorial Team
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