3 December 2014, London ~ More than 500 media and racing professionals gathered in London on Monday, 1 December for the 48th Horserace Writers and Photographers Derby Awards (HWPA) Luncheon supported by Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club.
Widely acknowledged as one of British racing’s most important and best attended industry events, the HWPA Derby Awards provides racing media with an opportunity to recognise outstanding achievement in the sport and to promote excellence in print and broadcast journalism.
Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club General Manager, Sami Al Boenain, joined HWPA patron Lord Derby at the Awards ceremony, which this year saw the introduction of an Arabian Award in recognition of Arabian racing’s contribution to the thoroughbred industry in the UK.
The inaugural Arabian Award was received by David Paton the trainer of Notid by Tidjani out of Sherrie Noreen, a 17-year-old bay gelding recently retired after his 101st race who recorded seven career wins and was placed on a further 45 occasions, his most recent victory coming on his 99th start at Huntingdon in June. Notid was also recognised for the ambassadorial role he has played in his capacity as the official horse of the Arabian Racing Organisation’s Kids’ Club.
Notid was among four nominees proposed by the Arabian Racing Organisation comprising of jockey Stephania Gandola, trainer Peter Hammersley and owner/breeder Paul Simmons who were hosted at lunch by Deputy General Manager, Tariq Al Siddiqi, together with directors and guests of the Arabian Racing Organisation.
In addition to presenting the Arabian Award, Sami Al Boenain also presented the award for the Trainer of the Year as voted for by the members of the Horserace Writers & Photographers Association which went to Richard Hannon.
During lunch a draw was made to select three lucky winners to receive an invitation for two to attend the H.H. The Emir’s Sword Festival in February with full hospitality and business class flights with Qatar Airways. The winners were Tom Cowgill, a Director of Rewards for Racing, Ascot Racecourse’s Susan Thomsett and Jemima Hannon, wife of Al Shaqab trainer Richard who asked for their prize to be auctioned to raise funds for charity.
Awards host, and winner of the Broadcaster of the Year Award for the sixth time, Nick Luck, conducted the auction after the awards ceremony which raised GBP 25,000 for charities associated with Motor Neurone Disease.
Alan Lee was voted Writer of the Year for a joint-record third time. Lee, racing correspondent of The Times, joins Alastair Down as the only-three time winner of this prestigious award, having already won the Clive Graham Trophy in 2004 and 2001.
Winners of the 2014 HWPA Derby Awards supported by Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club
International Trainer of the Year – David Simcock
Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club Arabian Award – Notid
Picture of the Year – Dan Abraham
John Oaksey Trophy for Racing Reporter of the Year – Chris Cook
Owner of the Year – Prince Khalid Abdullah
George Ennor Trophy for Outstanding Achievement – Clive Brittain
Jockey of the Year – Ryan Moore
President’s Award – Jonjo O’Neill
Trainer of the Year – Richard Hannon Junior
Peter O’Sullevan Trophy for Broadcaster of the Year – Nick Luck
Photographer of the Year – Edward Whitaker
Clive Graham Trophy for Racing Writer of the Year – Alan Lee