In 1957 Rosanna Bonelli, the first and only woman in history, participates as a jockey at the Palio of Siena. The Palio is a very rude horse race – where jockeys ride without saddle – which takes place in Siena uninterruptedly for five hundred years to celebrate the ancient and proud medieval republic.

Rosanna’s father Luigi, a playwright, had written in the 1930s operetta Rompicollo, whose protagonist was a girl who won the stake. Since childhood, Rosanna had dreamed of being Rompicollo, and she ended up succeeding after having participated as a stuntwoman in the production of a film with Diana Dors and Vittorio Gassman. Rompicollo’s story is an unusual story made of nonconformity and courage, but also of lightness and irony, and rich in casualty.

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