daily double

Cheryl White
Cheryl White

became the first African American female jockey. Riding Ace Reward, a horse owned by her mother and trained by her father, White finished last, inspiring the Daily Racing Form headline, "Black Jockette Finishes Last On First Mount." Despite her last-place finish, White attracted worldwide attention. She made special appearances at racetracks across the Midwest and was featured on the cover of Jet magazine, sharing that year’s honor with such illuminaries as: Civil Rights Activist Angela Davis, boxing champion Muhammad Ali, and entertainer
Sammy Davis Jr. Even though White’s father trained two Kentucky Derby starters (1932 and 1944), she never did realize her dream of riding in a Kentucky Derby. However, White did leave her mark on the sport. She rode 21 years and won 750 races. After dislocating her hip in a spill in 1989, White began to lay the foundation for a second career. "I knew I could never be a trainer," she says wryly. "As tough as I am on jocks, I'd be out of them so fast nobody would want to ride for me." By 1994 Cheryl had worked as a patrol judge, film analyst and steward's aide eventually working her way up to an associate steward. Today, Cheryl works as a racing official in California.