A total of 24 finalists for eight of the 10 categories for the Irish Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards were selected from almost 350 nominations, Horse Racing Ireland announced on Monday. Each winner will receive a trophy and €5,000, except for the Newcomer Award, who instead will be gifted a trip to Dubai and €2,500, while the winner’s yard, stud or company will each receive a cash prize. The Racecourse Award will be chosen by the Irish Stablestaff Association based on a quality programme survey of all stable staff across all Irish racecourses.
The 24 finalists for the eight awards are: Racing & Breeding Support Services (Martin Leahy, Sharon O’Regan, Martin ‘Snowy’ Pearce); Administration Award (Gillian Carey, Denis Hickey, Vicki McWey); Newcomer Award (Georgie Benson, Joanne Eaton, Charlie Sweeney); Horse Care Award (Emma Connolly, Mary Nugent, Sinead O’Sullivan); In The Saddle Award (Audrey O’Neill, James Rath, Josep Sans Sanchez); Travelling Head Person Award (Tina Evans, Jason Forsyth, Camilla Sharples); Leads by Example Award (Tom Daly, Valerie Keatley, Stephen Thorne); and Dedication to Racing & Breeding Award (Pat Farrell, Eamonn Leigh, Tommy Ryan).
The winner of the Irish Racing Excellence Award–who will receive a trophy and €5,000, plus €5,000 for their yard, stud or employer– will be presented to one of the winners of the above categories barring Racing & Breeding Support Services and the Newcomer Award.
“The contribution from stud and stable staff to the success of the Thoroughbred industry in Ireland plays a vital role in fonfirming Ireland’s global reputation,” said Godolphin’s Charities Strategic Advisor Diana Cooper. “All 24 finalists are fitting examples of Irish racing excellence and Godolphin is delighted to sponsor these awards and recognise and reward their inspirational work ethic and dedication.”