A Horse & Hound Podcast Advertising Series with Champion
Welcome to episode four of The Champion Safety Series, a Horse & Hound Podcast Advertising Series, in which our regular host Pippa Roome talks to four special guests about the Riding A Dream Academy, which was set up to help riders from under-represented communities experience the racing industry.
Our four guests on this podcast are:
• Khadijah Mellah, the first British muslim woman to ride in and win a race when she triumphed in the 2019 Magnolia Cup at Goodwood
• Naomi Lawson, co-founder and the programme manager of the academy, as well as communications director of Great British Racing
• ITV Racing presenter Oli Bell, who is also a co-founder of the academy
• Mel Newman, head of marketing at Champion.
Pippa chats to Khadijah about her journey from the Ebony Horse Club in Brixton to racing at Goodwood, while Oli Bell and Naomi Lawson explain how the Riding A Dream Academy was born, and Mel outlines how Champion is helping remove some the barriers that could prevent young riders from becoming involved.
This is the fourth in a six-part podcast series, produced in partnership with Champion. You can listen online here or via your favourite podcast app.
More episodes of The Champion Safety Series podcast
Find out why helmets matter and learn about riding hat design, testing and standards in this new podcast series
Learn about the multi-directional impact protection system (MIPS) that is included in some riding helmets and how it works
From The Champion Safety Series podcast: episode four
ITV Racing’s Oli Bell explains how he first met Khadijah at the start of this incredible journey: “On The Opening Show, which is the show I present for ITV, we played out a feature about the Ebony Horse Club in Brixton. I was surprised that people in the racing industry didn’t really know about Ebony – there are these incredible riding organisations in inner cities in our country, so I wanted to bring them to people’s attention.
“I had the idea to film a documentary taking someone from Ebony and putting them in a horse race. After a few conversations, mainly with Naomi at Great British Racing, we managed to secure a spot in the Magnolia Cup, but we didn’t have a rider. So we went to Ebony and said ‘we’ve got a spot in the race, but we need someone who is over 18, who would be up for doing it’.
“The reason I met Khadijah was because she was the only one available – but it turned out to be the most incredible ride that we all went on. From the moment we met we put all our eggs in one basket, but it was the most incredible basket to put them in because Khadijah turned out to be just an absolute superstar.”