Launched by Great British Racing last year and the sport’s Racing with Pride network, Racing Is Everyone’s Sport aims to encourage and welcome LGBT+ participation in the sport of horseracing, bringing the racing community together to champion inclusion for lesbian, gay, bi and trans people.
As part of this year’s Racing Is Everyone’s Sport campaign, Great British Racing brought together current jockeys and friends, Jack Duern and Josephine Gordon, to discuss Jack’s experience of coming out in 2013 and the importance of allyship for the LGBT+ community.
Jockey Jack Duern (pronouns: he/him) said: “Racing has definitely come a long way since I came out in 2013. I’m proud to be the first openly gay jockey in Europe, and also proud of the racing community for accepting me for who I am and for welcoming me back into the sport.
I’m determined to use my platform, and as an ambassador for Racing With Pride, to show other LGBT+ people, both in and out of racing, that they are not alone and that racing is everyone’s sport.”
Additionally, on Saturday 4th December, Racing is Everyone’s Sport will also encourage and welcome LGBT+ participation in the sport of horseracing through a series of activities at racecourses across the UK that day – Sandown Park, Aintree, Chepstow, Wolverhampton and Wetherby.
Rainbow saddle cloths, kindly organised by sponsors the Kindred group (through its Unibet brand), Betfair and Betway, will be worn for a number of races across the day, including the Betfair Tingle Creek at Sandown, the Unibet Becher Chase at Aintree and The Betway Handicap stakes at Wolverhampton.
Jockeys at the four meetings will once again be encouraged to wear rainbow armbands and rainbow pin badges will be given out freely to racecourse staff and spectators to show their support and spark conversation.
Erin Williams, Sport Engagement Manager at Stonewall (they/them and she/her) said: “We’re delighted that Great British Racing is continuing their support for Rainbow Laces this year, joining millions of people around the world who are committed to promoting LGBT+ inclusion in sport and fitness.
Racing With Pride is a network designed to support people who work in British racing and its fans who identify as LGBT+ as well as allies of the LGBT+ community who would like to demonstrate their support regardless of their own identity.
The goals of the network is to offer a safe space for LGBT+ people to meet, have fun and support each other as well as promoting a better understanding of LGBT+ inclusion and provide a platform for the LGBT+ community to have a collective voice.