The New York Times has won the 2013 Media Eclipse Award in the audio/Internet category for "The Jockey," a profile of Hall of Fame jockey Russell Baze, which appeared online Aug. 13.
Written and narrated by Barry Bearak, the story offered a multimedia presentation about the world of Baze, who has the most riding victories in the sport's history. Utilizing a full array of video, photography, music, and printed text to support the story, "The Jockey" was sectioned into eight chapters encompassing the full range of the racing experience, including race-riding; the morning routine; the extended Baze family; injuries; Baze's venture on the Southern California circuit; the role of Baze's agent, Ray Harris; the horseplayers at Golden Gate Fields; and Baze's 50,000th mount.
Bearak, who lives in Pelham, N.Y., has been with the Times since 1997. Before joining the sports department, he was a foreign correspondent for the paper and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting in 2002 for his coverage of the War in Afghanistan.
"So much great sports writing has been done at the racetrack," Bearak said. "It was intimidating to try my hand at the genre, so it's really a thrill to have the story recognized as worthy."
In addition to Bearak, the presentation was produced by Xaquin G.V., Graham Roberts, R. Smith, Catherine Spangler and Josh Williams; with images from Chang W. Lee and photo editing by Becky Lebowitz Hanger; copy editing by Victor Mather; music composition from Thomas Gamble; and additional reporting and video by Shan Carter, Mike Bostock, and Peter DaSilva. The project was overseen by sports editor Jason Stallman and associate managing editor for visualization Steve Duenes.
Honorable mention in the audio/Internet category went to "Jay Hovdey: Migliore Shares Secrets of Quirky Turf Sprint," about the downhill turf course at Santa Anita Park, which appeared on drf.com Oct. 30. The entry was produced by Dave Renard with Jay Hovdey as writer and video host; filming and editing by Nathan Murphy and Lou Monaco, and photography by Barbara Livingston.
Judges in the category were John Lee, multimedia producer; Brian Nadeau of Horseplayer Now; and Julie Sarno, writer and turf publicist.
The 43rd Eclipse Awards dinner and ceremony will be held Jan. 18 at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla.