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Rachel Christie:
First black woman to win Miss England beauty contest
HISTORY was made earlier in July when Linford Christie‘s niece, Rachel Christie won the UK’s premier beauty pageant and was crowned Miss England 2009 at the Metropole Hilton Hotel in London.

The first black woman to win the contest, Christie who beat 50 other contestants to secure first place, will now go on to competitors in the Miss World finals, due to be held in South Africa in December.

An athlete from an early age Christie is also preparing for the heptathlon and the 400 meters, hoping to join the ranks of England’s sportsmen and women in the 2012 London Olympic Games. With her uncle, Linford Christie, currently the most decorated athlete in Britain and the second fastest recorded sprinter in Europe, it is clear that this new beauty queen has running in her blood.

Currently training six days a week, Christie became involved in the world of beauty pageants partly as a result of trying to fund her athletics training. Traditionally an arena that has excluded people from A f r i c a n - C a r i b b e a n communities, Christie’s new title as Miss England marks what some consider to be a long breakthrough within the beauty industry by finally recognising the outstanding qualities in women from African- Caribbean communities. Reflecting on the fact that black women have traditionally been overlooked by the mainstream, the new Miss England said, ‘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.’
 

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