The 2014 Road Trotting Awards night was held at The Sibin Bar and Restaurant in Baltimore on Saturday night, April 26 before a large attendance.
The season, which ran from Drimoleague on St Stephen’s Day and concluded in Ballydehob on Easter Sunday was an unrivalled success with large attendances at each of the ten racedays .
Prizemoney in excess of €40 000 was raced for over the winter season, which shows this sport, which is unique to the West Cork Region, is in a healthy state.
The awards, all sculpted by John Daly, were presented to the winners on the night.
Horse of the Year award went down to the final day of the season with IB Guicci eventually claiming the honour with six wins from seven starts. This former multiple winner on Turf is owned and trained by Tadhg and Donal Murphy from IB Stables in Innishbeg Baltimore. He won his initial start in Drimoleague following on with victories in Durrus, Skibbereen, Colomane, Bandon and on his home road in Rath.
Kieran Sheehy rode him in all his races. Joint runners-up in this were Dream Maker and Swift Sunshine, both winners of five. Both of these were guided home in all their wins by David Brickley, which ensured the popular Drimoleague man collected the overall jockey of the year award.Brickley also won the award in 2013 and his total of 17 winners last year were recorded again this year. Easter Lily, Cams Decision, Lakeview Eagle and Millers Boy were other winning rides for the Baltimore born Brickley.
Deirdre Goggin was runner-up once again to Brickley, finishing out with ten wins for the campaign, which gave her the ‘Gong’ for leading female rider. Marie Moloney was runner-up in the ladies section with three wins all coming aboard Stan The Man in Grade A contests including the Palm Sunday/Easter Sunday double at the tail end of the season
The award for leading trainer also went down to the last day with Finbarr Brickley just edging out his neighbour Tadhg Murphy and it was fitting that Finbarr, who has been involved in the sport for over five decades and is Chairman of Baltimore Road Race Committee, was honoured on the night .
This year, a new award was introduced for the most consistent horse of the season: Easter Lily who is owned by Christy Caverly from Drimoleague who had ten starts, which included wins in Bandon and Ballydehob, was the winner. The large attendance on the night gave Christy a rousing reception, as he is one of the most popular owners in racing.
A special thank you to the hosts on the night Alan and Lynda Holmes of the Sibin Bar.
Looking ahead, the 2014 Turf Season is just around the corner with May 11 the opening meeting. A return to Inchydoney beach is pencilled in for May 18 followed by Dunmanway on May 25 and Lisangle on the June Bank Holiday weekend.
Details of upcoming fixtures can be found on www.irishtrotting.com or www.irishharnessracing.com. Facebook followers can get details on our page harnessracingcork.