Former Grand National 'work rider' jumps into new role at college

Emilie Wix on Tremallt, a horse that came ninth in the 2003 Grand National

Emilie Wix on Tremallt, a horse that came ninth in the 2003 Grand National. - Credit: Supplied by Emilie Wix

Former Grand National "work rider" Emilie Wix, who gave up her dream of becoming a jockey after injury, has jumped at a new role as a farming lecturer. 

Emilie, from Tunstall, near Woodbridge, has started work at Suffolk Rural, formerly Otley College, and is determined to help people consider a career in farming.

Emilie Wix on the farm at Suffolk Rural in Otley

Emilie Wix on the farm at Suffolk Rural in Otley - Credit: Suffolk Rural

She said: “I’m really passionate about all animals and livestock in particular, and I’m keen to pass on my knowledge.

"I want to ignite a flame in people of all ages to consider working in this wonderful industry."

The 39-year-old grew up in Scotland and studied at the National Horseracing College in Doncaster.


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After two years training to be a jockey, Emilie was employed as a ‘work rider‘ for trainers in Cheltenham, where she met racing legends like Tony McCoy and helped to prepare iconic horses like Tremallt for the Grand National.

Sadly, injuries made her look for more of "a sustainable career" - and, after leaving the horse-racing world, she made the switch to farming.

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She did an animal science and welfare degree, combined with applied biology and accredited to the University of East Anglia, at the then Suffolk College.

Emilie said: "I ended up doing some of my lessons at Otley, so joining Suffolk Rural feels like coming home."

She has worked for Fram Farmers, the RSPCA, including a stint in South Africa, and has now started work at Suffolk Rural.

Emilie said: "I truly believe that if you have a passion for agriculture and you want to go for it, we will be here to support you along the way. We want to become a centre of excellence and I want to be part of that. We have lots of exciting projects in the pipeline.”

Head of land-based studies at Suffolk Rural, Holly Williams, said, “Emilie’s knowledge and enthusiasm is already having a positive impact. We are delighted she has joined our expanding land-based team.”

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