Three Britons nominated for leading lady in Hollywood
Joanna Mason, Debbie Burt and Laura King are looking to Hollywood after being nominated for best female roles in the Arabian Racing Organisation version of the Oscars.
The three are in the running for the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Darley Awards, which recognise the high achievement in 2016 of women in Arabian horseracing around the world.
Both Burt and King are bidding to retain their awards at Friday's glittering Darley Awards presentation in front of 3,000 at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, followed by a gala dinner at the Beverly Hills Wilshire on Sunday.
Mason is looking to make it a hat-trick for British-based nominees in the best amateur jockey category after success for Rachel King in 2014 and Stefania Ganola for 2015. King is now a successful jockey in Australia, and Gandola will be taking out her ARO training licence this season.
Burt is up for the media award for a fourth time, having been successful last year. The ARO's media and PR executive and photographer also publishes her own digital magazine, The Arabian Racehorse, covering domestic and international Arabian racing.
Dubai Racing Channel’s Laura King is attempting to retain her crown as best TV presenter but family commitments will keep her from the weekend awards.
She said: "I’m very honoured to have been nominated for a fourth time. As ever, competition will be tough but I’m trying my best to defend it as winning last year was a huge thrill."
Mason is making her awards debut, She started partnering Arabian horses in 2016 with a ride in the Texas leg of the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship Series, in which she finished second.
This experience fuelled her enthusiasm and she clinched the female domestic title with five wins from 25 rides for a variety of owners, including ARO patron Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Mason said: “It’s such an honour to be put forward for this award and I'm really excited.
"I’ve had a fantastic first season racing with the ARO. I'm really grateful to all the owners who supported me last season and am looking forward to defending my title this year.”