“If, like me, you enjoy a beautifully written tale about a person in history you knew nothing about, then this is for you. Especially if you enjoy horses and horse racing. A real page turner." Jeremy Irons
"I loved reading this book, it was a fascinating insight to the bygone jockeys and the hardships they endured, wonderful too as has my Great Grandpa Fred Archer in it, so even more special. I highly recommend this to anyone interested in the world of jockeys and horse racing." Diana Reynolds
This is the true story of a Victorian jockey born in the slums of Hull. At the height of his powers in the 1880s, Charles Wood was Champion Jockey but his popularity and wealth threatened the dominance of the British aristocracy in a sport where they were all powerful.
His story mirrors the social changes taking place in the late Victorian era. The power of aristocratic patronage was in decline as their servants became wealthy and influential in their own right. So the aristocrats set out to protect their position by targeting a man they thought had dared to rise too high.
In a brutal attempt to strike his name and his achievements from the records, he was singled out and dragged into a scandal. His reputation was destroyed.
Charles Wood was nonetheless determined to defy his enemies and make a comeback. Not in a small way but in the biggest race in England. Everything hung on that one race. Winning meant redemption. Losing would finish him as a jockey.
“Charlie’s life has now been charted in a book by Sussex author Josephine Carr and what a riveting read it makes.” Sussex Express
“This book by Josephine Carr comes out of left field and punches way above its weight … This is a not to be missed piece of writing that you will not be able to put down for long! Enjoy, I did.” Mike Tate, award winning Canadian writer and book reviewer.