Jul, 2024
UK National Point-to-Point Awards

The National Point-to-Point Awards Dinner and Dance was held at Hatherley Manor Hotel on Saturday the 29th of June.

The theme of team work had been touched upon in a welcome by Paul Miller, the new chief executive of the Point-to-Point Authority who many attendees were seeing for the first time. “No one gets onto this stage by themselves,” said Miller, adding: “It’s a team effort.” He conceded the sport faces fresh challenges, but it has done so in the past because “it’s a sport made up of so many great people”.

Foran Equine Leading Trainer (6-14 Horses) – Dean Summersby

After almost a year with his horses below their best, Dean hit form with a vengeance in March. A four-timer at Kilworthy was followed by another at Upcott Cross and – in the last two months of the season – nobody other than Champion Josh Newman trained more winners. Key to his success has been his association with the recently retired Darren Edwards.

img
img

Foran Equine Champion Trainer – Josh Newman

After winning the 6-14 horse category last year, Josh did the pointing equivalent of winning the Championship then Premiership in football, winning the title in his first season with an expanded string. An across-the-weekend six-timer in March put him in contention and he kept banging in the winners, securing the title on the final day after a close battle with Alan Hill.

Connollys Red Mills Champion Horse – Grace A Vous Enki (Clive & Joan Hitchings)

Six wins, including an unprecedented five at Larkhill, and including a dead-heat in the Coronation Cup, saw the ex-Paul Nicholls eight-year-old claim this prestigious award for long-standing pointing supporters Clive and Joan Hitchings. He was superbly trained by Nickie Sheppard – who also has the hugely promising Ihandaya for the same owners – and ridden by James King.

img

Photo credits: Neale Blackburn