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Tuesday, 11 December, 2018

Stable staff champion Hogg will shine a light on racing yard life in new book

2016 employee of the year winner Gemma Hogg receives her trophy from Sir Tony McCoy
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Gemma Hogg, previously crowned Britain's top stable staff employee, has promised tales of joy and sadness in Stable Lass, a soon-to-be-published book that is set to offer a revealing and entertaining insight into life in a racing yard.

After being named Employee of the Year at the 2016 Godolphin Stud & Stable Staff Awards, Hogg was encouraged to spend her time away from work writing about her life at work, and has done so in a book that carries the secondary title: Riding Out and Mucking In: Tales from a Yorkshire racing yard.

The 35-year-old joined Micky Hammond's yard from the Northern Racing College at the age of 17 in 1998, becoming his assistant nine years later.

Gemma Hogg has worked for Micky Hammond since leaving the Northern Racing College

She said: "My brother-in-law, James Hogg, who is a writer, pointed out to me no one from within the stable staff ranks had ever written a book.

"There have been loads of books about trainers, jockeys and horses but nothing on stable staff. I told him I didn't think anyone would be interested in what I had to say - but he said I might be surprised about that, and things went from there.

"It's my take on the job and sets out to show what life is like for a young stable employee working in tough conditions. There are lots of twists and turns in the book, plenty of happy memories and also some sad ones."

Hogg added: "Writing the book was more difficult than I thought it would be - although I definitely didn't think it was going to be a whizz!

"I was never an academic person at school, so this is the last thing people will have thought I would do. However, I really enjoyed the experience, particularly the chance to speak with other people about their stories. In fact, with all those stories on top of mine there was enough material for four books!"

Stable Lass is published by Sidgwick & Jackson on April 5.

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With all those stories on top of mine there was enough material for four books

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Micky Hammond
E.W. Terms
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