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22 February 2021

Racing to School’s Programme Manager, Ollie McPhail is certainly not kicking heels despite the current schools’ shutout as he’s been busy with his annual job on the judging panel of the Godolphin Stud & Stable Staff Awards (GSSSA).

 “I am privileged to have been asked to be a member of the GSSSA judging panel since 2017 and it is always a fantastic and rewarding experience,” said Ollie.

“These awards are unique in offering personnel recognition for the dedication and hard work shown by so many in the industry. Through the judging process, we speak to many different nominees and the overriding emotion is the positive appreciation they feel by being nominated.

“Judging for the Awards is done in pairs, which change through the three different judging rounds to ensure impartiality and fairness to all involved. It has always struck me how passionate the judges are, so too the staff at the BHA who organise the Awards alongside the team at Godolphin.

“For me, it is a fantastic way for me to meet so many different people and hear about how they became involved in the industry. We can then use their experience and different career paths as examples to inspire the next generation through our work at the charity Racing to School.

The finals will obviously be a different experience for everyone this year, but I know the stories behind each finalist will be as interesting and deserving as ever. It is great news Racing TV will be broadcasting the presentations live, which will open the experience up to many people within in industry that have not experienced them before. Let’s hope it encourages other employers to nominate staff in future years. Good luck to all the nominees!”

The 2021 Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards will be broadcast live and free-to-air on RacingTV on Monday 22nd February. The show starts at 6:30pm and will be hosted by ITV Racing’s Ed Chamberlin. The virtual awards ceremony will celebrate the hard work and dedication of stud and stable staff who are vital to the racing industry and the care they provide to the horses they look after.

The Finalists

Community (In recognition of the wonderful work Rory MacDonald achieved at The British Racing School)

Simon Jones – Charity fundraiser
Richard Phillips – Trainer and community volunteer
Sam Trainor – National Horseracing College

David Nicholson Newcomer

Jaydon Lee – Nicky Henderson
Alice Price – Ben Pauling
Chrissie Sykes – Ruth Carr


Alex Cairns – James Fanshawe
Rebecca Edmunds – Bryan Smart
Lauren Webb – Daniel & Claire Kubler


Joanna Łacisz – Sir Michael Stoute
Sarah Peacock – Tom George
Faisal – Richard Phillips

Stud Staff

Tom Hughes – Hazelwood Bloodstock
Martin Languillet – Fittocks Stud
Elody Swann – Newsells Park Stud


Guianand Bissessur – William Haggas
Debbie Howie – John Gosden
Joline Saunders – Richard Phillips

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