Johnston, Skelton and Keighley among contenders for Team Champion awards

Mark Johnston: trains Deep Intrigue
Mark Johnston: his yard has been shortlisted for the Lycetts Team Champion AwardCredit: John Grossick DG1 4JW 0771046172

The shortlisted finalists for the inaugural Lycetts Team Champion Award, launched to establish safe and effective employee management practices within the racing industry, were announced on Wednesday.

The award has two categories, one for yards with 40 or more horses, and one for yards with fewer than 40 horses.

Tom Dascombe, Warren Greatrex, Mark Johnston and Dan Skelton have been shortlisted in the first category, while Nick Alexander, Martin Keighley, Seamus Mullins and Suzy Smith made up the quartet in the second category.

Kevin Parsons, Union Learn Project Manager for the National Association of Stable Staff, served as one of the judges and said: “It has been an absolute pleasure reading through the nomination forms and some fantastic work and practices are going on out there in many yards across the country.”

Next month the judges will visit the eight yards, with the winning stable in each category due to be presented with their £4,000 prize at the National Trainers Federation’s annual general meeting at the Institute of Directors in February.

NTF chief executive Rupert Arnold said: “We would like to thank all the yards who collaborated so well to describe in detail the way they work as a team and are engaged and developed as individuals.

“The shortlists are a product of the scoring system and, while competition for the eight places was intense, yards that have not made the shortlists should be proud of what they are doing in their workplace and will have a star rating to prove their yard is a great place to work.”

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