Wantha Davis

2004 Cowgirl Honoree – Kansas

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Wantha Davis loved to race horses—and to win doing it. From the Great Depression through the 1950s, she won more than 1,000 races. Her feats on the racetrack were commemorated in newspapers across the country and on newsreels in movie houses. She was referred to by many major sports writers as one of the finest jockeys in the country. Though she never set out to fight for women’s rights and wanted simply to compete at the big tracks, she ended up making strides in both realms. A true pioneer in horse racing, Wantha also paved the way for female jockeys of today.