Jockey and Brother With Down Syndrome Break Down More Than One Barrier
Meet Australia’s new favorite horse-racing siblings.
On Tuesday, November 3, jockey Michelle Payne became the first ever woman to win the Emirates Melbourne Cup, which is one of Australia’s most prestigious Thoroughbred horse races. Payne says she couldn’t have done it without her brother, Stevie, who has Down syndrome and works with the horses at Darren Weir stables, BuzzFeed reported.
Brother and sister. My heart hurts. pic.twitter.com/vcfnA7YJRt
— Mark Di Stefano (@MarkDiStef) November 3, 2015
Michelle Payne, 30, was the only woman in the cup and rode a horse named Prince of Penzance to win the $6.2 million race at Flemington Racecourse, CNN reported.
— CNN International (@cnni) November 3, 2015
Her brother is known as one of the best “strappers” around, a term that means person who looks after racehorses. He gave his sister a great start to the race by picking out number one at the barrier draw, which gave her a favorable start gate.
— The Age (@theage) November 3, 2015
“I think it’s great for other people with Down syndrome — to see how capable they can be in normal life,” Payne told ABC. “Stevie can pretty much do anything, and look after himself when he’s on his own.”
Watch the triumphant moment Stevie Payne leads his sister and the winning horse in a victory lap in the video below: