Last night (30th November) saw Middleham-based jockey Joe Fanning honoured with a Lifetime Achievement award at the Magic Moments in Northern Racing, held at The Grand Hotel, Gosforth Park, in Newcastle. Fanning, whose stunning career on the flat has seen him amass well over 2,500 winners so far, was presented with his trophy by Paul Cookney from award sponsors RaceTech.
Paying tribute to Joe on the night was his agent and friend, Niall Hannity, who recounted the jockey’s outstanding achievements in the sport, describing Joe as “driven, polite, dedicated, professional, unassuming, and very talented on a horse.” Hannity went on to say, “This prestigious award has had some worthy and fantastic recipients over the years, this year’s winner is a bang up there with the very best.”
The Magic Moments in 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 event was organised by Racing Welfare for the first time, the charity having taken over the mantel from founders Peter and Penny Johnson after their 12 years at the helm of the event.
Dawn Goodfellow, Chief Executive of Racing Welfare, spoke of the legacy of the awards, saying, “Tonight is all about celebrating standout moments from Flat, National Hunt and Point-to-Point racing throughout last season and I would like to extend my warmest congratulations to all of this evening’s winners.”
Dawn continued, “This is the first year that Racing Welfare has organised the Magic Moments in Northern Racing awards and we look forward to building on the legacy of the 13 years that this occasion has now been running for. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to showcase racing in the north of England and Scotland through tonight’s ceremony.”
Book-ended by dinner and dancing at the hotel, the award’s part of the evening covered eight categories. This year’s winners for the 2018/19 season were as follows:
-Flat Trainer (sponsored by Elite Venue Selection) – Rebecca Bastiman, who trained Hayadh to victory in the Hunt Cup at Thirsk in May
-Flat Jockey (sponsored by York Racecourse) – Phil Dennis, for a double of winners at this year’s Ebor Festival at York
-Point to Point Jockey (Yorkshire Region) (sponsored by the John Wade Group) – Kate Lowcock, for her win in the National Princess Royal Championship
-National Hunt Trainer (sponsored by Sedgefield Racecourse) – Nick Alexander, for Lake View Lad’s Boxing Day Win
-National Hunt Jockey (sponsored by Ray Green) – Sean Quinlan, for his ride on Takingrisks in the 2019 Scottish Grand National
-Flat Owner (sponsored by Newcastle Racecourse) – Doug Graham & Ian Davison, owners of Dakota Gold
-National Hunt Owner (sponsored by North Sea Logistics) – Phil & Julie Martin, owners of standout chaser Definitely Red
Money raised by last night’s event will go towards funding Racing Welfare’s projects in the charity’s northern region.