The Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards, now in its second year, concluded this afternoon with Keeneland graciously hosting the event again in its sales pavilion in Lexington, Ky Oct. 13.
With the addition of a new category, the Newcomer Award, winners were honored in six categories along with runners-up. Jill Byrne, senior director of industry relations at the Breeders' Cup, was again the master of ceremonies, with Hall of Fame jockey Ramon Dominguez on hand as presenter of the awards.
"I want to express my sincere congratulations, not only to all the winners and runners-up, but to all those who were nominated as well," said Jimmy Bell, president of Godolphin in America. "Once again the judges had the difficult task of separating the finalists from a very competitive and impressive group of individuals that are truly the heart and soul of our great industry."
Dan Metzger, president of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, said, "Today we sing the praises of the unsung heroes of the Thoroughbred business. It's very special to be able to honor those that have gone that extra furlong because they are passionate about what they do. And a very special thanks to Godolphin for bringing this program to the United States and for allowing TOBA, The Jockey Club and the HBPA to be its industry partners in such a meaningful event."
The full list of winners and runners-up is as follows:
Dedication to Breeding Award
Lugusta "Gus" Gray, Yearling Manager, Double Diamond Farm
(Runners-up: Francisco "Pancho" Sanchez, Farm Manager, Craig Wheeler Thoroughbreds and Ronda Clifton, Equine Operations Coordinator, WinStar Farm)
Dedication to Racing Award
Arturo Ramirez, Assistant Trainer, David Donk Stable
(Runners-up: Raymond Davenport, "My Man at the Barn", Tim Keefe Stable and Lena Lorieul, Exercise Rider, Claude R. "Shug" McGaughey Stable)
Larry McGinnis, Stallion Manager, WinStar Farm
(Runners-up: Aidan O'Meara, Stallion Division Manager, Hill 'n' Dale Farm and Clay Murdock, Farm Manager, Rancho San Miguel)
Christophe Lorieul, Assistant Trainer, Christophe Clement Stable
(Runners-up: Hilary Pridham, Assistant Trainer, Michael Stidham Stable and Richard Budge, Farm Trainer, WinStar Farm)
Jak Knelman, Director of Stallion Sales, Calumet Farm
(Runners-up: Kristina Taylor, Exercise Rider, WinStar Farm and Emily Castrenze, Assistant Trainer/Exercise Rider, Delacour Racing Stable)
Thoroughbred Industry Community Award
Coordinator, Kentucky Equine Management Internship (KEMI)
The Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards, with a total prize money of $128,000, was managed and administered by the Horsemen's Protective and Benevolent Association, The Jockey Club, and the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association. Media partners are The Thoroughbred Daily News, BloodHorse, Daily Racing Form, The Paulick Report, and TVG.