Four from Headquarters scoop top stud and stable staff awards
Well-known faces from Newmarket’s racing community were among the big winners in the world’s richest awards for stable and stud staff staged in London on Monday.
Sponsored by Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin racing operation, the awards offered £120,000 in prize money across six categories and were held at the Jumeirah Carlton Hotel in Knightsbridge, honouring the sport’s backroom men and women working in racing yards, on studs and in racing offices.
Guest presenter Clare Balding, who hosted the awards with Champion jockey Richard Hughes, praised all the nominees and finalists. “They all have a huge pride in what they do,” she said.
Newmarket had finalists in five of the six categories. The first winner to be announced was Robin Trevor-Jones, travelling head lad to trainer Ed Dunlop, who took the high achiever award ahead of Tony Cromby, head lad for Sir Michael Stoute and Dominique Dainton-McElroy, head girl for Donald McCain.
Instrumental in the international success enjoyed by Dunlop with the likes of Ouija Board, Snow Fairy and Red Cadeaux, Robin said winning the award was “absolutely massive”.
His boss, Ed Dunlop said: “Robin shows an enormous sense of pride and diligence in his work and his attention to detail is always outstanding.”
The top award in the rider/groom category went to Seamus O’Gorman who works for Godolphin trainer Saeed Bin Suroor.
Having worked for Godolphin for 17 years, he was described as an indispensable part of the Godolphin team. “This award is not just for me it is for all of them,” said Seamus.
Runners-up in the category were Caroline Hovington who works for Ed Walker and Paul Burns who works for Brian Meehan.
One of the most popular award recipients was the first winner of the administration staff prize - Jim Hiner, racing secretary to trainer Roger Varian, who was described as an integral part of the team at Newmarket’s Kremlin House Stables since 1976 when he began working for the late Michael Jarvis.
His widow, Gay, said: “Michael always attributed much of his success over the years to Jim. He is 100 per cent reliable and trustworthy and those attributes are priceless.”
Jim said: “I am lucky enough to have worked with two first class trainers and I am very proud of the success Roger has had so far.”
Runner-up in the dedication to racing category was Gerry McCormack, head lad for Newmarket trainer John Gosden, and Kevin Gossage, stud groom, and assistant manager at Aislabie Stud took a runners-up award in the stud staff category.
There was also a special award for Frankel’s work rider Shane Fetherstonhaugh, presented by Brough Scott, chairman of the awards judging panel, who read a special tribute from Frankel’s trainer Sir Henry Cecil, who called his contribution to the horse’s success “invaluable.”
“Shane has every right to feel very proud of what he did with Frankel,” he said, “and it is my privilege to work with someone like him.”
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Thursday 23 May 2013
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