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Finalists announced for Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff awards

Catriona Bissett: last year's Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff employee of the year
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The 18 finalists across six categories who will head to London next month for the 2020 Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards have been announced.

They have made it through from an initial field of 203, which was reduced in December to a shortlist of ten for each of the six awards.

A dozen of them in the first four categories will be hoping to succeed last year's overall employee of the year winner Catriona Bissett, who is on the judging panel this year having also won the leadership award in her assistant trainer role with Nick Alexander at Kinneston Stables in Scotland.

Bissett won £20,000 for her two awards and another £20,000 for her stable.

Details of last year's award winners and gala evening

The finalists in that category this year are Sir Michael Stoute's assistant James Savage, Leanne Kershaw from Jedd O'Keeffe's yard and Mat Nicholls, assistant to Kim Bailey.

All 18 finalists are guaranteed a prize, with winners receiving £5,000 and the other two £2,000 in the first four categories.

The winner of the David Nicholson newcomer award gets £2,000 and a five-day educational tour of Dubai, including return flights and five nights in a five-star hotel. 

The finalists face the judges, chaired by Brough Scott, in London on February 24 before the winners are announced later at a glittering awards ceremony at The Underglobe on London's South Bank, hosted by ITV Racing's Ed Chamberlin.

The other judges are Sally Aston, Mark Bradburne, Guy Disney, Mick Fitzgerald, Dawn Goodfellow, Nick Luck, George McGrath, Ollie McPhail, Dinah Nicholson and Hazel Peplinski.

The shortlisted nominees for the six awards

David Nicholson Newcomer
Charlotte Cotgrave (Mark Johnston)
Bradley Harris (Andrew Balding)
Kevin Skelton (Bryan Smart)
Leanne Kershaw (Jedd O’Keeffe)
Mat Nicholls (Kim Bailey)
James Savage (Michael Stoute)
Hayley Ashcroft (Tom Dascombe)
Shoab Patel (Stuart Williams)
Kate McCormack (Paul Nicholls)
Stud Staff
James Frank (Hascombe and Valiant)
Patrick Meehan (National Stud)
Keith Warburton (Shade Oak)
Seanie Mulcaire (Philip Hobbs)
Andrew Stringer (John Gosden)
Philip Wright (Harry Dunlop)
Rory MacDonald
Eleanor Boden (Scottish Racing)
Rachel 'Chicky' Oaksey (Injured Jockeys Fund)
Simone Sear (Racing Welfare)

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The finalists face the judges, chaired by Brough Scott, in London on February 24
E.W. Terms