Judges announced for the 2017 Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards 

18 Oct 2016 Education/Training Grassroots

  • Four new judges join the judging panel.
  • Five weeks to go until nominations close on Wednesday 16 November 2016.

BHA_Wufoo_640x210_retinaThe twelve judges that make up the panel form an integral part of the prestigious Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards. They bring a wide range of expertise, skill sets and are geographically spread to ensure a fair and robust assessment of all nominations.

The Awards, sponsored by Godolphin and run by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) in association with the Racing Post, recognise and reward the outstanding dedication and skills of the stud and stable staff who are at the heart of British racing.

This year we are delighted to welcome Julian Dollar, from Newsells Park Stud to the judging panel together with last year’s Employee of the Year, Gemma Hogg, Ollie McPhail from Racing to School and Hazel Peplinski, Chief Executive of Perth Racecourse.

The four new judges will be taking time from their busy schedules to help judge this year’s nominations.

  • Julian Dollar has years of experience and a wealth of knowledge within the breeding industry and has been General Manager of Hertfordshire based Newsells Park Stud since 2006. The stud, owned by the Jacobs family, is a leading commercial nursery that bred Champion 3yo filly, Legatissimo and is consistently one of Europe’s leading breeders and yearling consignors.
  • Gemma Hogg has been assistant trainer to Micky Hammond for the last nine years. Her achievements include NVQ levels 1, 2 and 3 and riding a winner under rules. Gemma’s commitment to Micky Hammond Racing led her to being named Employee of the Year 2016 as well as winning the Leadership category.
  • Ollie McPhail started his career as part of the stable staff team with legendary trainer David Nicholson 22 years ago. He progressed through the amateur jockey ranks before riding as a professional for ten years. A past winner of the JETS Richard Davis award Ollie now works for the charity Racing to School as Lead Education Officer.
  • Hazel Peplinski was born into breeding, hunting and point-to-point racing. She rode a handful of winners as an amateur jockey. Since then she has been Clerk of the Course at Hamilton Park, Ayr and Kelso. Before being appointed Chief Executive of Perth Racecourse, Hazel was Chief Executive and a Director of Hamilton Park.

The new judges bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Panel which includes: Racing Welfare, and former Northern Racing College, Chief Executive Dawn Goodfellow; former Jump jockey and self-employed businessman Mark Bradburne; Tabbi Smith, Training Director at the National Stud and Sally Aston, owner and manager of Goldford Stud.

Former trainer Ian Balding and Dinah Nicholson, whose late husband David has the Newcomer category named in his honour, also form the core of the panel with George McGrath, Chief Executive of the National Association of Stable Staff, with Brough Scott continuing in his role as Chairman of the Judging Panel.

Brough Scott, Chairman of the Judging Panel said:

“Over the last 13 years the Awards have gone from strength to strength and we’ve seen some truly exceptional examples of dedication and hard work that is required in a racing yard or stud. These Awards are the perfect opportunity to honour and reward the work of stud and stable staff, so I urge trainers, owners, managers and colleagues to nominate at least one person who deserves to be recognised at these prestigious national awards. There are just five weeks left until nominations close on Wednesday 16 November.”

Gemma Hogg, 2016 Employee of the Year and 2017 Judge, said:

“I am absolutely delighted to be asked to help judge the 2017 Awards. Racing is a fantastic sport and the all stud and stable staff put so much work into the job.  These Awards are such an important opportunity to acknowledge this hard work.”

The Awards offer more than £120,000 in prize money, with up to £40,000 available to a single yard or stud. The prizes will be presented in front of an invited audience on the evening of Monday 20 February 2017 at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower Hotel in Knightsbridge, London.

The Awards are an important event in the racing calendar and are a good example of the racing community coming together to acknowledge the work that goes on behind the scenes.

Nomination forms can also be downloaded from the recently launched website www.studandstablestaffawards.co.uk, via www.racingpost.com and submitted by post. Alternatively simply text AWARDS to 07469 145150 and a member of the team will arrange for a form to be sent to you.

Notes to editors:

1. The categories are: Leadership Award, Dedication Award, Rider/Groom Award, Stud Staff Award, Rory MacDonald Community Award, David Nicholson Newcomer Award.

2. The winner of each of the first four categories will receive a prize of £5,000 with an additional £5,000 also being awarded to the winner’s yard or stud. Two runners-up in each of these categories will win £2,000 each, with the same amount going to their yard or stud.

The winner of the Rory MacDonald Community Award will receive £5,000, with the same going to a charity of their choice. The two runners-up will receive £2,000, with the same going to a charity of their choice.

The winner of the David Nicholson Newcomer Award will receive £2,000, with the same amount going to their yard or stud, while two runners-up will receive £1,000 each, with the same amount for their yard. The winner of this award will also receive an additional prize of a 5 day Educational trip to Dubai. Return flights and accommodation in a 5* hotel included.

The Awards will also recognise an Employee of the Year, who will be selected from the winners of the first four categories. That winner will receive an additional prize of £15,000, with the same amount going to their yard or stud.

3. Last year saw the launch of the ‘Rory MacDonald Community Award’, which will acknowledge those who support stud and stable staff or have made an outstanding contribution to benefit the wider racing community. The Awards provide an opportunity for the racing industry to highlight and thank the hard work put in by stud and stable staff across the country, and this award in particular acknowledges people who have had a positive impact on their community.