Racing Reporter of the Year

John Oaksey Trophy

The John Oaksey Trophy was introduced to the Derby Awards in 2012 as a second prize available to journalists. It looks back on those who have uncovered and produced the hard-hitting exclusives across the year and written the stories which prompt important conversations around the sport.

Chris Cook may have switched allegiance from the Guardian to the Racing Post but he was still able to successfully defend his award in 2021. His portfolio, which helped him to a fourth win, included his ground-breaking exclusive on the court case between Freddy Tylicki and Graham Gibbons and the judges called his portfolio “an excellent cross-section of work, with two heavyweight exclusives and an original expose.”

He won ahead of Racing Post colleagues David Jennings, Peter Scargill and Bill Barber and is the fourth from the newspaper to win the prize. Marcus Townend, from the Daily Mail, is the only other journalist to have won the John Oaksey Trophy more than once.

John Oaksey
A celebrated amateur rider, who rode the runner-up Carrickbeg in the 1963 Grand National, John was a long-serving correspondent for the Daily Telegraph and the Horse & Hound, as well as a noted broadcaster for ITV and then Channel 4. He was also involved in the setting up of the Injured Jockeys Fund.

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Chris Cook

2021 winner (prize collected by Tom Kerr)

2022 Entries

Entries are open for the 2022 HWPA Derby Awards and close on Thursday October 6th.

Entries for this category should be a strong news story, especially a scoop or an exclusive, broken by the reporter, on any aspect of horse racing. Entries may be written, audio or video pieces. Entrants are required to submit ONE piece of work.

Previous winners

Year Winner
2021 Chris Cook (Racing Post)
2020 Chris Cook (The Guardian)
2019 Marcus Townend (Daily Mail)
2018 Bill Barber (Racing Post)
2017 Marcus Armytage (Daily Telegraph)
2016 Marcus Townend (Daily Mail)
2015 Graham Dench (Racing Post)
2014 Chris Cook (The Guardian)
2013 Jon Lees (Racing Post)
2012 Chris Cook (The Guardian)