Hollie Doyle says rivals 'didn't recognise' her in stunning SPOTY transformation as jockey returns to day job

HOLLIE DOYLE has opened up on the ribbing she has taken from rivals after finishing third in the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.

The record-breaking female jockey – the only woman on the six-person shortlist – finished behind Liverpool and England star Jordan Henderson and F1 world champ and winner Lewis Hamilton.



But there was no time to celebrate for 5ft, 8st Doyle, who was at Lingfield racecourse in Surrey for five races today.

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She had just ridden her 149th winner of the year on 8-1 shot Little Sunflower when she caught up with Sky Sports Racing host Luke Harvey.

The presenter asked Doyle – who once swallowed two teeth in a horror fall – what it's been like among her rivals after she burst into the national conscience at Sunday's awards show.

And Doyle, who hit the red carpet with boyfriend and fellow jockey Tom Marquand, replied: "They said they didn't recognise me last night!"

Doyle, 24, was as long as 33-1 to win the award before a tidal wave of support from the racing community saw her odds plummet to 9-4.

Though not a winner, she was clearly chuffed with her newfound-fame… although a grey and dreary Monday at Lingfield brought her back down to earth.

Still, it was a brilliant way to cap a breakthrough 2020.

Highlights of her incredible year included riding a historic double on the British Champions Day at Ascot.


She also became the first woman to record a five-timer when winning five races in one day at odds of 899-1 at Windsor.

Speaking at the awards, tiny Doyle – who can deadlift double her bodyweight – said: "I know this year's been incredible but I don't want this to be my best year.

"I want bigger and better things. Any sportswoman who gets a taste of success wants more, so I want to keep the revs up and keep ploughing on."

And she paid tribute to all those who voted her when describing what it felt like to finish third.

Doyle said: "It felt unbelievable but felt like it wasn't for myself but for our industry as a whole, which I'm proud to be part of.

"Things like this don't happen to people like me. I'm just honoured to be where I am."

Her boyfriend Marquand summed it up well too, when he tweeted: "Saying I'm proud wouldn't even begin to scratch the surface."

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