Monday, July 20, 2009

First black Miss England is an islandista!



[caption id="attachment_1272" align="alignleft" width="246" caption="photo credit: PA"]photo credit: PA[/caption]

The first black Miss England in the contest's history was crowned today and she is an islandista!

Rachel Christie, the niece of Jamaican-born British sprinter and Olympic gold medallist Linford Christie, was crowned Miss England in the wee hours of Tuesday morning.

Rachel is the daughter of Linford's late brother Russell who was also an athlete before he became caught up in unsavoury stuff. When she was just eight years old, her father was stabbed to death in a drug war.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="186" caption="photo credit: Martin Pitchley/Daily Mail"]photo credit: Martin Pitchley/Daily Mail[/caption]

Following in the family tradition, Rachel is also an athlete - a heptathlete who trains with her uncle at the Linford Christie stadium in Hammersmith. 


She actually got into beauty contests with the idea of funding her athletics career, admitting frankly in an interview with the Independent:

I'm just an athlete at the minute, which means I'm unemployed and I'm broke. Modelling could fit round training in a way that a lot of other jobs couldn't."

 She had a close call a few days before the contest when she got into a car accident in Acton and suffered whiplash and bruised legs that almost caused her to miss the first round of the contest.

Christie is fully aware of the historic nature of her being in the contest. Just a few days ago, she commented on the dearth of black entrants in beauty contests, saying:
"I don't know why so few black girls enter. I think they think they won't win because beauty queens always have blond hair and blue eyes. I think they need to advertise more to change that. I'd be so proud if I were the first black Miss England.

And now she is. Congrats to Rachel!

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