Mike Jensen of the Philadelphia Inquirer
and Bill Christine of the Los Angeles Times
won Media Eclipse Awards in the feature/enterprise and news/commentary categories, respectively, for 2004.
In addition, Lenny Shulman, features editor of The Blood-Horse
, received an honorable mention in the features category for "Life After Racing," which explored the retirement and rehabilitation of former racehorses. The story appeared in the Feb. 28, 2004, edition of The Blood-Horse
Jensen won for his series of articles in the Inquirer
on the run of Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Smarty Jones through last year's Visa Triple Crown. Jensen, a staff writer for the Inquirer
since 1988, traced the story of Smarty Jones, trainer John Servis, owners Pat and Roy Chapman, and an array of individuals working behind the scenes, from May 1 through Aug. 6 of 2004.
Honorable mention in the features/enterprise category also went to Pete Perkins of the Arkansas Democrat
for a series of articles titled "Thrills and Spills: Jockeys Ride for the Rush..." that appeared on March 7, 2004.
Judges for the features/enterprise category were Greg Michalson, co-publisher of Unbridled Books, Reid Cherner of USA Today
, and author Jane Schwartz.
Christine won for his article "Kayak II," which appeared Dec. 24, 2003. The article explores the circumstances surrounding the 1940 Santa Anita Handicap, in which Kayak II finished second to his stablemate, Seabiscuit.
Honorable mention in the news/commentary category went to Sean Clancy for "Emptiness No Win Could Fill" about Angel Cordero Jr., which appeared in Daily Racing Form
Aug. 20, 2004, and to Tim Layden, whose article "Why America Loves Smarty Jones," appeared in Sports Illustrated
May 10, 2004.
Judges for the news/commentary category were Shailagh Murray of The Wall Street Journal
, Dale Austin of the Annapolis Sunday Capital
, and Steve Wulf of ESPN, The Magazine.
The 2004 Eclipse Awards will be held Jan. 24 at the Regent Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills, Calif.