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Clare Balding, First Lady of British Sport. Beginning her career as a jockey she transitioned into the world of broadcasting with a television debut at Royal Ascot reporting on her passion for horse racing. Working in broadcasting since ’94 Clare began with work in radio before becoming the face of BBC’s Racing Output television show in 1998. Now a regular on BT Sport with a weekly show and as an anchor of Channel 4 Racing, Clare has presented some of the biggest sporting events of a generation. Whilst racing is her first love, she’s presented diverse coverage from tennis at Wimbledon, to rugby, and anchored five Olympics, four Paralympics and three Winter Olympics. As the face of London 2012 she won critical acclaim and earned herself a place in the nation’s hearts. She was recognised for her work in 2013 by being appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for her services to broadcasting and journalism. And in the same year she was presented with the Special BAFTA for her work on the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics.
Away from the world of sport Clare demonstrates her versatility by presenting shows from Crufts to Countryfile and the regular BBC Radio 4 Ramblings programme. Given her quick wit she is also a favourite as a guest to appear on entertainment programmes; Have I Got News for You, A Question of Sport and Countdown. On such appearances, as with her guest speaking, Clare can call on a wealth of sporting accolades and refer not only to life in the saddle but her many experiences both on and off camera.
As an author she writes regular columns for the Racing Post, The Observer and the Sunday Telegraph again showing how her experience is not limited to sport but also includes current affairs and literature. Clare published her first book with Penguin in 2012, based on her childhood growing up in an unusual household, it was published to critical acclaim going on to win biography of the year at the National Book Awards. In 2016 Clare released her first children’s book for Puffin, The Racehorse Who Wouldn’t Gallop.
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