Paddy Trainor of Johnston Racing has been crowned employee the 2022 Employee of the Year at the conclusion of the Godolphin Stud & Stable Staff Awards on Monday 21 February.
For the second year in a row, racing’s everyday heroes were honoured with a virtual ceremony, broadcast live on Racing TV and hosted by Oli Bell.
Paddy will receive a £10,000 prize for himself, as well as a further £10,000 to be shared among their colleagues at Johnston Racing and the perpetual Godolphin Trophy.
Earlier in the evening Paddy had won the Rider/Groom Award, which itself carried prize-money of £5,000 for himself and the same again for the yard, meaning Johnston Racing and Paddy each went home with £15,000 in prize-money from the ceremony.
Paddy, a familiar face for any regular racegoer in Britain, has worked for Johnston Racing for 23 years and left an indelible mark on Britain’s winningmost operation. Recently qualified as an Industry Coach, he works tirelessly to help those less experienced to develop their skills and improve their knowledge of horse welfare. He is a constant source of encouragement for younger members of staff and keeps up enthusiasm and morale with his larger-than-life character and outlook on life.
The combined £30,000 claimed by Paddy was part of prize-money totalling £128,500, generously offered by sponsors Godolphin, distributed during a memorable evening, with the awards organised by the British Horseracing Authority in conjunction with media partners Racing Post and Racing TV.
Nick Luck, Chair of the Judging Panel, said:
“It is an honour and a pleasure to get to know the nominees for each category and picking winners from among them is an exceedingly difficult task, as everybody who has been nominated is most deserving of their moment in the spotlight.
“Paddy is an incredibly deserving winner of the Employee of the Year Award and all of his colleagues at Johnston Racing will rightly feel very proud this evening.
“My congratulations go to all of this evening’s winners, as well as those nominated and I would also like to thank my fellow judges for their work in this process.”
Julie Harrington, Chief Executive of the BHA, said:
“One of the great pleasures of my job is getting to spend time with the nominees for the Godolphin Stud & Stable Staff and my congratulations go to everybody considered for an award this evening.
“The awards are special, not only because they shine a light on the incredible work done by racing staff up and down the country, but because in being nominated, those individuals are given an indication of the high regard in which they are held by their peers.
“Everybody nominated tonight has done their bit to make horse racing a better sport and for that we are all extremely grateful. Measures have remained in place on racecourses throughout the last 12 months to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 and, as has been the case throughout the pandemic, those impacted have adapted their working style admirably and ensured that our sport has continued uninterrupted since its resumption in June 2020.
“My heartfelt congratulations go to all of tonight’s winners and nominees, in particular Paddy Trainor, and my thanks go to our sponsor Godolphin and the judging panel for their hard work.”
The full list of winners (emboldened) and finalists is as follows:
David Nicholson NewcomerElla Garland – Nick Gifford Racing Elouise O’Hart – Ed Walker Debbie Brodie – Godolphin Management Co. Ltd. Leadership Timothy Hogg – Jedd O’Keefe Racing Ltd. Tom Messenger – Dan Skelton Jack Steels – Ed Walker Rider/Groom Paddy Trainor – Johnston Racing Ltd. Christina Berry – Grace Harris John Nicholson – Johnston Racing Ltd. Stud Staff Balazs Karoly Sipos – Hascombe and Valiant Stud Dulcie West – North Farm Stud Richard Heayns-Corrick – Chapel Stud Dedication Volodymyr (Vova) Stepanyuk – Nick Gifford Racing Alyson West – James Ferguson Simon Olley – Philip Kirby Community (In recognition of the wonderful work Rory MacDonald achieved at The British Racing School) Andrew Braithwaite – The British Racing School Freedom Zampaladus – Urban Equestrian Academy Kevin & Pam Atkinson – New Beginnings