Hollie Doyle’s superb 2020 got even better on Tuesday night when she scooped three prizes at the Lesters, the annual awards ceremony to recognise riding achievements in Britain.
Doyle, fresh from finishing a fine third in the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards on Sunday, has enjoyed a glorious 12 months, during which she has set a new record for most winners by a female jockey in a British campaign and recorded her first top-level success thanks to Glen Shiel’s narrow success in October’s Qipco British Champions Sprint Stakes at Ascot.
The 24-year-old was crowned female jockey of the year and also Flat jockey of the year, while she won a special recognition award as well.
That feat meant she emulated Paul Hanagan, whose three titles at the 2010 Lesters was the only other time a rider has scooped a trio of prizes.
Normally a social highlight in the calendars of weighing room members, the event was a virtual affair this year because of the coronavirus pandemic.
It was broadcast on Sky Sports Racing and Paul Struthers, chief executive of the Professional Jockeys Association, said: “We’re delighted for all the winners and hope it clearly demonstrates to them the regard and esteem in which they are held by their peers.
“Hollie’s achievement in becoming only the second jockey in Lesters history to win three awards in a year, and becoming the first female jockey to be crowned Flat Jockey of the Year, should not be downplayed.”
Champion Brian Hughes was named jump jockey of the year, while a rare honorary Lester was given to Dr Jerry Hill, the BHA’s chief medical adviser.
Struthers added: “As well as overseeing improvements in the medical care of jockeys, including the expansion of on-course physiotherapy and offering one-to-one advice and support to jockeys who are hospitalised, his tireless and ongoing efforts to get us back racing while ensuring the health and safety of the sport’s participants hasn’t gone unnoticed by our members, and this was their way of saying thank you.”
Winners at the 2020 Lesters
Female Jockey of the Year Hollie Doyle
Apprentice Jockey of the Year Cieren Fallon
Flat Ride of the Year Dylan Hogan, Wanaasah, Wolverhampton
Flat Jockey Special Recognition Hollie Doyle
Conditional Jockey of the Year Jonjo O’Neill jnr
Jump Ride of the Year Jack Tudor, Potters Corner, Welsh National, Chepstow
Jump Jockey Special Recognition Leighton Aspell
Flat Jockey of the Year Hollie Doyle
Jump Jockey of the Year Brian Hughes