Sky Racing has stable of female stars​

Sky Racing has stable of female stars

Sky Racing female presenters (from left): Chantelle Buckley, Caroline Searcy, Jaimee Rogers (seated), Lizzie Jelfs (seated), Victoria Samba, Bernie Cooper, Libby Hopwood (seated), Priscilla Schmidt, Kristen Fahd (seated) and Chynna Marston.

Sky Racing female presenters (from left): Chantelle Buckley, Caroline Searcy, Jaimee Rogers (seated), Lizzie Jelfs (seated), Victoria Samba, Bernie Cooper, Libby Hopwood (seated), Priscilla Schmidt, Kristen Fahd (seated) and Chynna Marston.

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Phillip Bate analyses news from the Queensland racing scene.

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TABCORP and its racing broadcaster Sky Racing are proudly creating pathways into media careers for aspiring females.

The recent recruitment of Lizzie Jelfs – a former stable foreman for top Thoroughbred trainer David Hayes – means Sky and Tabcorp now has 10 female presenters in its stable of stars.

Jelfs is now on-air as part of Sky Thoroughbred Central's coverage (FOXTEL channel 528).

And, excitingly, five of Sky's 10 female presenters are former jockeys.

They are: Bernadette Cooper, Libby Hopwood, Priscilla Schmidt, Chantelle Buckley and Chynna Marston.

“It’s fantastic to work with passionate, knowledgeable, enthusiastic and hard-working people. And in the case of the former jockeys, it’s great to provide them a career pathway after their time in the saddle is over,” Tabcorp’s Head of Media Communications and Talent Adam Hamilton said.

Hopwood – a successful South Australian-based rider before a nasty fall ended her career in late 2014 – said her “self-worth” has been restored since joining Sky Racing in late July.

“I feel like I have a purpose again and I’m actually going somewhere in life. Just like I started out riding as an apprentice and worked through the ranks, I’m doing the same at Sky, but with a fantastic support network around me,” she said.

“I was part of the Sky Academy run by Cameron Williams a few months back which was invaluable and some of the more experienced presenters have become great mentors to me.

“It’s an exciting time for females on TV when you look at Yvonne Sampson, Erin Molan, Rebecca Maddern and others and Sky (Racing) is one of the leaders in creating opportunities.”

Jaimee Rogers – Tabcorp and Sky Racing’s most recognisable face – is thrilled with the growing numbers of female presenters and the opportunities available to them.

“I’ve been with Tabcorp for eight years and I’ve seen it grow from me being the only female at one stage to 10 of us now. It’s not just the opportunities, but the training and development invested in you which is fantastic,” she said.

London to host World's Best Racehorse Awards

THE 2016 Longines World’s Best Racehorse and Longines World’s Best Horse Race Ceremony will be held on January 24, 2017 in London, England.

The International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) ceremony will honour the top highest rated horses in the Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings as well as the Longines World’s Best Horse Race.

Last year, US Triple Crown winner American Pharoah was honoured as the World’s Best Racehorse, while France’s Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe was named the inaugural winner of the World’s Best Horse Race award.

The Bob Baffert-trained Arrogate shot to the top of the latest World's Best Racehorse Rankings up to November 6, 2016, following his win over California Chrome in the Group 1 Breeders' Cup Classic in November. Both horses earned their 134 and 133 ratings on dirt while dual champion turf galloper and champion mare with a 130 rating is Australia’s dual Cox Plate winner Winx. Other Australian-based horses to receive the 120 ranking cutoff mark were Hartnell (123), Chautauqua (122) and Flying Artie (120).  

UK jockey Ryan Moore has already been named the Longines World's Best Jockey for 2016 – the second time in three years he has won the award. Moore won eight of the world's top 100 Group 1 races to claim the award which was established in 2014. Moore finished with 166 points for the year, ahead of French-based Christophe Soumillon on 98 points and Australia's Hugh Bowman on 94 points.​ 

The story Sky Racing has stable of female stars​ first appeared on Queensland Country Life.

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