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Superstar Raquel Clark shines at Thoroughbred Racing’s big night

After another huge year of success in the saddle, jockey Raquel Clark has taken home a host of awards at the 2019 South Australian Thoroughbred Racing Industry Awards held at Morphettville on Saturday 31 August. 

Raquel won the title of South Australian Jockey of the Year as well as repeating her success from last year winning the Leon Macdonald Award for South Australian Apprentice of the Year and the TAB South Australian Metropolitan Apprentice Jockey of the Year.

Also added to Raquel’s trophy cabinet were the Glennon-Johnson Award for South Australian Metropolitan Jockey of the Year, the TAB South Australian Provincial and Country Jockey of the Year award and the Caitlin Forrest South Australian Provincial and Country Apprentice Jockey of the Year award.

For Raquel, the huge night of awards was pay off for a year of particularly hard work.

“I’ve had a massive year, definitely the best year of my career to date,” she said.

“Having the support of the industry behind me has played a big part in that, so it’s rewarding to get this recognition from the industry and to have my name up there alongside racing legends.

“I see these awards as an incentive to work harder – to push towards bigger and better things.”

Other notable winners included Tony McEvoy, who took out South Australian Metropolitan Trainer of the Year and the CS Hayes Award for South Australian Trainer of the Year. Mr McEvoy also took home the Festival Hire South Australian Champion Racehorse of the Year award for Despatch.

“By its nature, thoroughbred racing is a very competitive industry so I’m always very proud to win these awards,” Mr McEvoy said.

“Winning is a culmination of the hard work of our staff, of everything we’ve put into our facilities and our offering. It really has to all come together – with a little bit of luck, of course!”

The evening culminated with one of the industry’s most prestigious honour, the John Letts Medal. The award recognises excellence in riding and outstanding achievements by a jockey at all race meetings throughout the season and across the State and was this year awarded to Todd Pannell. Todd enjoyed a very consistent year that culminated with his first Group 1 winning ride on Despatch in The Goodwood.

Hosted by’s Terry McAuliffe and James Jordon, the event saw more than 350 guests gather at Morphettville to celebrate the State’s top jockeys, horses, trainers, apprentices, owners and the media.

Other highlights of the night included:

  • Legendary jockey Jim Courtney and four-time Great Eastern Steeplechase winning racehorse Doiran inducted into the South Australian Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame;
  • Grant Young won the TAB South Australian Provincial and Country Trainer of the Year;
  • Most Outstanding Achievement Award by a Club won by Murray Bridge Racing Club; and
  • Most Oustanding Achievement Award by an Individual won by John Buhagiar.

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