Diane Crump was the first professional female jockey in America She started her career at the young age of 20 entering into her first race at Hialeah Racetrack in Florida, February, 1969. She also got the opportunity to be the first woman to ride in the Kentucky Derby in 1970. And while the latter feat is what garners the most attention from people outside the horse world, (such as myself, a friend who has the honor of writing an introduction) the significance of the former holds a gravity of achievement few can claim, and fewer will in the future as sports become more and more integrated.... (read more) I can imagine the first female professional linebacker could possibly carry that amount of importance of achievementâ€¦ and I know I wouldnâ€™t tell any professional linebacker otherwise, female or not, but for now letâ€™s weigh the gravity of the situation. Horse racing has been going on in the US and North America since 1665. American Football did not make itâ€™s debut until 1892. I wonâ€™t go into the worldwide history of horse racing, but to say that there are archaeological artifacts to support mounted horse racing in Ancient Egypt and Sumeriaâ€¦ so weâ€™re talking about a sport that spans the length of written history and she was the FIRST woman to ride professionally in our great country.