Nominations will open May 8 for the 2017 Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards which were held in North America for the first time in 2016. Nominations can be submitted until Aug. 1. This year, there will be a total of six awards which will carry prize money of $128,000, an increase of $13,000 over last year.
Godolphin, the global racing stable founded by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is the principal sponsor of the awards in association with The Jockey Club, the National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protection Association, and the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association.
Godolphin also sponsors the equivalent Stud and Stable Staff Awards in Ireland, Australia, Britain, and France.
Dan Pride, COO of Godolphin in America, said, “On behalf of Godolphin, we would like to thank everyone that made the first year of the TIEA a huge success, including the nominators. The involvement of The Jockey Club, the National HBPA and TOBA, as well as media support from BloodHorse, the TDN, Daily Racing Form, and TVG, was instrumental in bringing these awards to fruition. The first group of nominees were so impressive across the board and we fully expect to see that again this year. It’s heartwarming the hardworking men and women in our industry receive the recognition that they truly deserve.”
Dan Metzger, president of TOBA, commented, “To be in the audience as the awards were announced was a special moment for everyone in the room. It was a well-deserved acknowledgement of those dedicated employees who are often overlooked, but are so vital in making our industry a success. We strongly encourage everyone to nominate deserving individuals they know who are doing their part to take care of our equine athletes.”
A new award category has been added, “The Newcomer Award,” which will recognize an individual who has been working in any area of Thoroughbred racing and/or breeding for less than five years as of May 8. In addition to the prize money for this award, the winner will also receive a five-day educational tour to Dubai with flights and accommodation included.
The Keeneland Association is honored to host the awards again this year which will take place Oct. 13. Bill Thomason, president and chief executive officer of Keeneland, said, “Keeneland is privileged to be part of this very special program. These nominees are the true heroes of our industry and deserving of recognition for their commitment to excellence in racing.”
For more information and to nominate online, go to www.godolphinusawards.com.