Doyle Returns To Riding at Churchill Downs for First Time Since Becoming a Mom

May 23, 2024

Sophie Doyle (Coady Media)

Churchill Downs Press Release

LOUISVILLE, Ky.— Jockey Sophie Doyle returned to riding at Churchill Downs on Sunday, marking her first mount beneath the Twin Spires since her daughter, Emilie, was born nearly two years ago.

Doyle, who began riding professionally in Kentucky in 2014, wasted no time returning to the racetrack in the mornings, breezing horses for her fiancé, trainer Chris Davis, just three months after giving birth. Doyle’s expertise was crucial in the preparation of Epic Ride for Kentucky Derby 150 being the regular exercise rider for the talented John Ennis-trained 3-year-old colt. Epic Ride would go on to finish 14th in the Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (Grade I).

Doyle began her triumphant return to riding races earlier this spring, winning two races from 13 starts with two seconds and one third. She’s named to ride You Make Me Happy on Saturday at Churchill Downs as well as several horses throughout the week at Belterra Park and Presque Isle Downs.

“It’s wonderful to be back here at Churchill Downs,” Doyle said. “It’s been almost two years since I’ve been back riding here. It was the first place I won a race when I began my career in North America and having Emilie beside me makes it even more special.

“I really enjoy seeing Emilie’s love for horses and how she interprets them. When mommy is winning she knows it’s great. I’ve been told after children, mom’s have superpowers. My day starts pretty early taking care of her and working horses. Plus, I have my off-track Thoroughbred Jaz N Tap. Now, it’s back to race riding again.”

In Doyle’s last full-time season in the saddle, she tallied 83 wins from 493 starts with purse earnings of $2.5 million.

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