Louisville television station WLKY has won its second Eclipse Award for local television for its feature on Tom McCarthy, trainer of Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) starter General Quarters.
The feature, co-produced by John Boel and Scott Eckhardt, aired on the station's Derby preview show April 29. WLKY previously won a Media Eclipse Award in 2006 for Final Foal, a documentary about the last foal sired by Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew.
The Eclipse Awards are presented by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, National Turf Writers Association, and Daily Racing Form. The 39th Annual Eclipse Awards ceremony will be held Jan. 18 at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif.
"Given all of the excitement and terrific stories to come out of horse racing this year, we are ecstatic and extremely honored to win the Eclipse Award again," Eckhardt said in a release from the NTRA. "Tom McCarthy was a great story of a local guy taking his best shot at winning the Derby. We loved telling it to everyone."
McCarthy, 75, a retired Jefferson County school teacher with a one-horse stable, was followed by the WLKY production team as he prepped General Quarters for the Derby, in which the horse finished 10th. The feature was filmed at Keeneland, where General Quarters won the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I), and at Churchill Downs.
Honorable mention in the Local Television category went to MSG Plus in New York for its live "Saturdays at Saratoga" telecast of the Sept. 5 Woodward Stakes (gr. I). Al Bernstein was the producer; John Imbriale, executive producer. WAVE-TV in Louisville also received honorable mention for its Kentucky Derby Day coverage May 3. Amy Kapoor and Sarah Miles were the producers.
Judges for the local television category were Jack Coffey of Eclipse Productions; Stan Isaacs, former Newsday sports television columnist, and Amy Zimmerman, executive producer of HRTV.