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Wednesday, 17 September 2014

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Wet Wet Wet light up Ultimate Ladies' Night at Carlisle Racecourse

A chart-topping band, show-stopping hats and around 6,000 bopping race-goers made Carlisle Ladies Night another massive success on and off the track.

Eighties heart-throbs Wet Wet Wet wowed the crowd with hit after hit, kicking off with their 1987 debut single Wishing I Was Lucky.

The biggest night in Carlisle’s social calendar is now the talk of the racing world as it is the only meeting featuring only female jockeys, both amateur and professional.

It is also the perfect opportunity for women to wear their posh frocks and enjoy a glass of fizz and a flutter.

Special police constable Faye-Louise Phillips proved to be an arresting sight as she won the best turned out woman award.

Wearing a striking black vintage dress, previously worn when she was bridesmaid to her sister Danielle earlier this year, Faye-Louise galloped off with first place in the competition. She accessorised her dress with pearls left to her by her grandmother.

The 24-year-old, from Warwick Road, Carlisle, juggles her job in House of Fraser with working as a special constable, but hopes to join the police full-time when her four-year-old daughter Ella-Rose starts school.

“I’m shocked to have won as I didn’t think I stood a chance,” she said. “The dress is really special as I wore it when my sister got married.”

Joint winners of the best dressed man competition were Scott Reed-Brough and Richard Dixon.

Jockeys from England, Ireland, Scotland and even Spain were in action in the world’s only meeting dedicated to female riders. They included Group One-winning jockey Hayley Turner, the country’s most accomplished female rider, who rode a winner at the track when My Meteor triumphed in the five-furlong handicap.

But the biggest cheer of the night was reserved for Cumbrian jockey Emma Sayer, from Hackthorpe, near Penrith, who won the final race on Sergeant Pink. It was a family success as Sergeant Pink is trained by her mum Dianne and owned by her dad Andrew.

Dianne said: “We’re an all-girl yard so it is a really special night for us to be here and to win.

“The whole city of Carlisle gets behind this meeting, and it is great for racing. I’m absolutely delighted to have won because Emma works so hard and is very dedicated. Sergeant Pink is an old character, who has been out of form, but has come good.”

Racecourse manager Geraldine McKay said: “We have been so lucky with the weather. I got wet twice this morning walking the track, but the sun came out.

“We’ve had a lot of positive reaction and there has been a lovely feel to the meeting. We’ve also had some great quality races and some good contests on the track.”

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