Winx steals the show at Victorian Racing Awards

Source: Herald Sun /

Winx polled 114 votes in the racehorse of the year category to win easily from potential heir apparent Mystic Journey (52), Tony McEvoy’s sprinter Sunlight (47), Melbourne Cup winner Cross Counter (15) and Santa Ana Lane (12).

Winx’s trainer Chris Waller landed the Fred Hoysted Medal for training excellence on Victorian tracks for the first time.

Waller drew 128 votes for his effort to pilot Winx to an unprecedented fourth Cox Plate victory, 21 more votes than Mystic Journey’s handler Adam Trinder.

Charlie Appleby (94) was next, ahead of McEvoy (75) and Patrick Payne (44).

Matt Cumani won the Colin Alderson Award for the best Victorian trainer aged 40 or younger and with no more than seven seasons’ experience as a licensed trainer. Cumani saddled 51 winners last season.

Shane Jackson won his first Tommy Corrigan Medal, awarded to the leading jumps jockey of the season in Victoria and South Australia with votes lodged at each jumps meeting on a 2-1 basis by the stewards’ panel.

The Irish-born jockey, who formed a productive partnership with Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott, amassed 19 votes – two more than 2017 runner-up Richard Cully.

Eight-time Corrigan Medallist Steven Pateman was third on 15 votes, ahead of Tom Ryan (10) and Thomas Sadler (nine).

Two Victorian Jockeys’ Association peer-voted awards were also handed out, with Damian Lane retaining his title as Victoria’s ‘Most Valuable Jockey’ after another stellar season in the saddle.

Apprentice jockey Michael Poy was voted by his fellow riders as the ‘Rising Star’ after a breakthrough season which saw him ride 79 winners across the state.

Son of Melbourne premiership-winning jockey Michael Clarke, Poy was also recognised for his maiden triumph in the metropolitan apprentice jockeys’ premiership after riding 32 winners in Melbourne – 15 more than his nearest rival.

Linda Meech was feted for becoming the first female rider to claim the Victorian premiership after notching 139 wins across the state.

For the fourth year in succession, Williams claimed the Roy Higgins Medal after enjoying his finest campaign to date, logging 83 metropolitan wins to secure another metro premiership.

Teo Nugent won the Victorian apprentice title with 86 winners across the state during the 2018-19 season.

The metro trainers’ premiership was awarded to the Lindsay Park training partnership of David and Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig, who won a total of 64 races in town during the 2018-19 season.

The trio also took the overall Victorian title with their 158 country winners taking the stable’s combined haul to 222 for the campaign.