Friday evening (26th November) saw the Northern racing community come together at the Vertem Northern Racing Awards held at Newcastle racecourse.
The glittering black-tie event celebrated many standout performances from the last 12 months but it was, without doubt, Harriet Bethell who stole the show as she took home the Magic Moment award. Having suffered a catastrophic brain injury due to a fall on the gallops at her East Yorkshire yard, Harriet has endured months of therapy which has included having to learn to walk again. The culmination of a gruelling regime saw her walk round Pontefract racecourse earlier this year and in the process raise nearly £60,000 for the Injured Jockeys Fund. Harriet rightly received a standing ovation on the night in recognition of her extraordinary efforts.
Paddy Trainor was the proud winner of the Our People Award on the night, and somewhat lost for words. The award is a racing industry recognition award and there was no one more deserving than Paddy who has dedicated his working life to the sport. He is also a great supporter of Racing Welfare and it was wonderful to see his achievements recognised.
The Northern Racing Awards aim to champion stand-out performance from racing across Scotland and northern England and include categories for Flat, National Hunt and Point-to-Point racing. This year’s winners for the 2020/21 season were as follows:
Our People Award – Patrick Trainor
Flat Trainer (sponsored by Gain Equine Nutrition) – Kevin Ryan
Flat Ride(sponsored by RaceTech) – Kevin Stott, for Bielsa at Ayr on 18th September 2021
Flat Ride – Apprentice (sponsored by CNG Switch) – Billy Garritty
Point to Point Horse (Yorkshire Region) (sponsored by the John Wade Group) – Monbeg Chit Chat
National Hunt Trainer (sponsored by North Sea Logistics) – Ann Hamilton, for Nuts Well at Aintree on 25th October 2020
National Hunt Ride(sponsored by Ray Green) – Ryan Mania, for his ride on Vintage Clouds at 2021 Cheltenham Festival
National Hunt Ride – Conditional (Sponsored by Ontoawinner) – Danny McMenamin
Flat Owner (sponsored by Newcastle Racecourse) – William Johnstone, owner of Euchen Glen
National Hunt Owner (sponsored by Sedgefield Racecourse) – David Armstrong, owners of Yorkhill
Magic Moment Award – Harriet Bethell