Alan Tippling was a very deserving recipient of a Lifetime in Racing Award presented at Catterick Racecourse on Wednesday 19th July. Alan was presented with the award by his employer of 31 years, Chris Thornton, with his family and friends in the audience. The award recognises his continued dedication to the racing industry in a career which has continued for 52 years and counting.
The ‘Alan Tippling Lifetime in Racing Award Fillies Handicap’ took place as part of the Racing Welfare day initiated and held by Catterick Racecourse. As part of the day, a group of retired racing staff from Yorkshire enjoyed a sociable day out, meeting up with old friends and colleagues.
Alan Tippling was born in Sedgefield and brought up in Bishop Auckland. He started his career in racing at the age of 15 with Sam Hall at Brecongill Stables just outside of Middleham. Alan stayed there for eight years before going to Italy for a winter working for Luca Cumani’s father, Sergio, which was quite a unique thing to do at that time. Following this he went to work in Lambourn for Duncan Sasse for a year before returning back up north to Middleham. On his return he worked for Ken Payne, the first trainer to have a hundred horses, who was based at Kingsley House, now home to Mark Johnston.
Alan then moved on to work for Ernie Weymes before his longstanding employment of 31 years with Chris Thornton. Alan looked after some top horses here including Flossie, winner of the Manchester November Handicap at Doncaster and Path of Piece who won twenty races including one at the Cheltenham Festival and the Bogside Cup. Alan said “I loved it there and did everything from riding work to being in charge of travelling”.
Following Chris’s retirement he completed his career with a five year stint at Mark Johnston’s as a groom/rider and driver and despite retiring officially in 2015 has done two years part time driving since for Mark. Alan says of working in racing “I have loved my time in racing and it is through the sport that I have made many lasting friendships.”
Racing Welfare will be presenting two further Lifetime in Racing Awards at Great Yarmouth and Newbury racecourses on 27th July to Ted Jackson and Steve McNally respectively.