Lorna Brooke remembered at Ludlow with race named after her

Lorna Brooke’s family and friends turned out to remember her at a special memorial event at Ludlow Racecourse.

Brooke, who enjoyed more winners at the track than any other venue, died last month following a fall at Taunton.

Aged 37, the talented amateur had been welcomed back into the Ludlow winners’ enclosure on six occasions.

On Monday afternoon, Brooke’s loved ones gathered around it to cheer in Our Rockstar (6-4f), who came home first in the Lorna Brooke Amateur Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle.

Trained locally by Alastair Ralph, a friend of Brooke, the seven-year-old was a first winner for 18-year-old jockey Ben Bromley.

Ralph, who worked with Brooke at Henry Daly’s stable, said: “It’s great to see the turnout for Lorna today. It’s fantastic that my mare has won for her as well.

“We wanted to support this race, we had two in it. It’s a first winner for Ben, it’s good for these amateur races to be put on under Rules.

Our Rockstar won the Lorna Brooke Amateur Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle under Ben Bromley

“Riding in these races was Lorna’s way of life.”

A spokesperson for Brooke’s family thanked Ludlow for arranging the event and all those involved in caring for her, including medics at Taunton Racecourse, nurses at Southmead Hospital and the Injured Jockeys’ Fund.

Brooke rode 17 winners under Rules in Britain, riding in 122 races at Ludlow.

“Ludlow Racecourse was very much part of Lorna’s life and she spent a lot of time and had very many happy moments here,” he said.

Lorna Brooke riding racehorse Radius Bleu in 2016

“She would appreciate greatly what has been done for her today and would be even more thrilled there has been lady jockey winners (Page Fuller, Gina Andrews) at the races.”

The spokesman said that Brooke’s parents, Sir Alistair and Lady Susan Brooke, were thankful for everyone’s support at this time.

“Lorna was fun, she was bubbly and above all she was herself with no airs and graces,” the spokesman added.

“Always smiling, always pleased to see you. And behind that smile was a determined steely competitor with great ability.”

Bromley, from Bridgnorth, was honoured to play his part in proceedings on Our Rockstar, who rallied tenaciously up the straight.

The two-length success took his career tally to ten, adding to his achievements in point-to-points.

“Our Rockstar has seen the last three (hurdles), picked up and flown,” he said.

“It’s a great feeling.

“It’s a really important race to win. Phil Rowley’s yard I work for knew Lorna well and to do that for her is fantastic.”

The Rowley team rounded off the card with success in the G.C.Rickards Ltd. Mares’ Open NH Flat Race, courtesy of 3-1 shot Malaita.

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