The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) was delighted to announce the four nominees who have been recognised for their achievements during the 2017 UK Arabian racing season at the annual Horserace Writers and Photographers Association (HWPA) Awards, sponsored by Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club, which take place next month in London. The Royal Cavalry of Oman, James Owen, Ellie Mackenzie and Heather Phillpott have all had landmark seasons and they compete to secure the prestigious award which went to ARO patron HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum in 2016.
Owen who recorded back to back ARO Trainer Championships and also owned and trained the Champion Arabian and Champion Mare, Dolfina D’Ibos commented: “It is an honour to have been nominated for the Arabian Award and I would like to thank Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club for their generous sponsorship of Arabian racing in the UK. Thank you to my owners, including HH Sheikh Hamdan, for allowing me the privilege to train for them and a huge thank you my staff at home and to ARO who continues to work hard to push our sport forward.”
Mackenzie, who represents Racing Welfare as their Arabian Racing Ambassador and secured the Novice Jockeys title was overwhelmed saying: “It’s a tremendous honour and a huge confidence boost, plus it is a good stepping stone to build on for next season. I can’t thank Racing Welfare enough, as well as all the owners and trainers who have given me chances, and of course my agent Anna Wallace for her unceasing support.”
ARO Chairman Charles Gregson said: “We thank the Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club and also the Horserace Writers and Photographers Association for their support of UK Arabian racing, recognising the achievements of its’ participants in this way.
“The Royal Cavalry of Oman and Heather Phillpott have been long term owner-breeders here in the UK and it is wonderful to see both ends of the scale rewarded with their respective nominations. Both James and Ellie have had outstanding seasons and we extend our best wishes to all the nominees for the awards ceremony on December 4 at the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London.”
Photos: Royal Cavalry of Oman, James Owen, Ellie Mackenzie, Heather Philpott – (C) Debbie Burt – Equine Creative Media.