"I think that's racing.
One of the runners galloped on her head and surgeons spent hours stitching her face back together.
Though she self-effacingly describes herself as "just a country jockey", Linda Meech is the real deal.
I’m from a sheep and cattle farm at Pongaroa on the North Island of New Zealand.
These days she struggles to describe the feeling of being atop all that power.
Trump knows America better than it knows itself, Follow our live coverage of the US election results, ABC's rolling coverage of the US election results, Follow our live coverage for the latest news on the coronavirus pandemic, Live: Biden holds onto slim Nevada lead as counting continues in pivotal states, Trump's campaign wins court ruling to gain access to Philadelphia vote counting centre, Morrison will have a tough year in 2021, if Biden joins the leaders' club, What it'd take for Trump to win from here, At a glance: Here is the actual state of the US presidential race, Aussie health workers in Sweden speak out as hospitals struggle to keep up, Live: Spain's COVID-19 death toll climbs to new daily high in second wave. Growing up on the family farm, the Meech children all rode ponies, but it was Linda who wanted to go fast.
Her brother Ben, with a thick Kiwi accent (though Linda has none), is on hand to take care of the horses when his sister is away riding around the state. Booking a last-minute summer holiday?
Linda's great grandmother had a horsey picture hanging above her fireplace. These days Linda freelances and rides for trainer Ciaron Maher.
It can be depressing," she says. It doesn't hurt that her best friend lives next door, married to a trainer. She credits her success with hard work and the chances she was given by trainers like Peter Moody, Kevin Myers and Patrick Payne.
The surrounding paddocks are filled with racehorses casually ambling about.
It used to be, but now I'm older and hopefully getting a bit wiser," she says. "I know where the speed is — inside or outside of me — but you're better off to have an open mind that's clear rather than one that's full of set plans and nervousness.".
"It can be exciting. This is one of her compulsory, self-imposed rest days, but that doesn't mean a break from horses.
"If I cruise along things happen, so I try to just go with the flow.
The move looks set to pay off with Zephyron after the gelding has had three runs in Sydney leading up to this.
She did, she outrode them.
"I was always revving them up, trying to make them be racehorses," she says.
The dual Group 1 winner of 1715 races confirmed on Wednesday that she is pregnant with her first child and due in January, but that her ground-breaking riding career will continue on following the birth. I was so happy for her. Read about our editorial guiding principles and the standards ABC journalists and content makers follow. From the deck, beyond the dam, you can see racehorses circling the track. What she could never walk away from though, is the horses and the friendships she has made.
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