Khalid Abdullah’s outstanding mare Enable was the headline winner at the ROA’s 38th Horseracing Awards, scooping a trio of trophies, including the Horse of the Year accolade for the third successive year.
The five-year-old was also named the Zeus Capital Outstanding Filly and Mare, and the Zeus Capital Outstanding Middle Distance horse, in a ceremony held at the Royal Lancaster hotel in London on Thursday evening.
With the winners voted for by the ROA’s 7,900-strong membership, the closest call came in the ROA Owner of the Year category, with Andrew Gemmell, owner of the top-class hurdler Paisley Park, prevailing by six votes over Abdullah.
Thanks to his exploits throughout the year that saw him land the Stayers’ Hurdle at Cheltenham and most recently Newbury’s Long Distance Hurdle, Paisley Park was named the Racing Breaks Outstanding Hurdler.
Altior, owned by former ROA Board member Patricia Pugh, received the Racing Breaks Outstanding Chaser trophy for a second time, while JP McManus’ recent Tingle Creek Chase hero Defi Du Seuil collected the Racing Breaks Outstanding Novice Chaser prize.
There was success for the Owners Group syndicate on Thursday, with their dual Grade 1-winning hurdler Pentland Hills triumphing in the Racing Breaks Outstanding Novice Hurdler category.
Jayne Sivills’ popular Lady Buttons became the first British-based mare to win the Racing Breaks Outstanding National Hunt Mare title thanks to her exploits throughout the year.
After his blistering performances throughout 2019, Godolphin’s exciting colt Pinatubo scooted away with the Zeus Capital Outstanding Juvenile award while Bjorn Nielsen’s star homebred Stradivarius captured the Zeus Capital Outstanding Stayer gong for a second time.
There was more celebration for those involved with John Gosden’s yard during the evening when Too Darn Hot was named Outstanding Miler for Lord and Lady Lloyd-Webber while Hamdan Al Maktoum’s speedball Battaash was crowned Outstanding Sprinter.
Kachy’s outstanding record on synthetic surfaces saw David Lowe’s prolific six-year-old named ARC Outstanding All Weather Horse.
The Fleming Accountancy Special Achievement Awards celebrated horses that did not make it into the main award nominations but have contributed something extra to the season.
Improving sprinter Dakota Gold, owned by Doug Graham and Ian Davison, was rewarded for his five wins in the Flat category, with Paul Vogt’s Frodon, who scored a memorable Grade 1 victory at the Cheltenham Festival under Bryony Frost, triumphing in the National Hunt section.
Four racecourse industry awards were also presented on Thursday evening with Chester and York sharing the Large Racecourse of the Year title. Musselburgh triumphed in the Small Racecourse category while Thirsk and Newmarket’s Rowley Mile were voted as the most improved tracks.
In a first for the ROA Horseracing Awards, the Champion Trainer trophy was presented to John Gosden.
It is the fourth time that Gosden has been crowned Champion Trainer and comes off the back of a campaign that saw him saddle the Group 1 winners Anapurna, Logician, Enable, Too Darn Hot, Star Catcher and Coronet.