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Jockey and Brother With Down Syndrome Break Down More Than One Barrier

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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.

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.

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.

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.”

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Via Instagram
The siblings are the two youngest members of the Payne racing family, which is well known in Australia. Of the ten Payne children, eight became jockeys.
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Watch the triumphant moment Stevie Payne leads his sister and the winning horse in a victory lap in the video below:

VIDEO: Enjoy the moment strapper Stevie Payne leads 2015 Melbourne Cup champions Michelle Payne and Prince Of Penzance back into the yard. Posted by on Monday, November 2, 2015

Originally published: November 3, 2015
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