The 2019-2020 season was one like no other, for many reasons, and so it seemed apt that the presentation of awards to recognise the achievements of breeders should be a little different in 2021 too.
Aiming for a safer approach, Harness Breeders Victoria has undertaken an online program of award announcements, featuring nominees in the week leading up to the Nutrien Yearling Sales, and completing the fortnight schedule with naming of winners for the 2019-2020 season.
The most prominent of the Victorian Breeder Awards was the Victorian Breeder of the Year, sponsored by Woodlands Stud and presented to winner, Pat Driscoll of Yabby Dam Farms, at the opening of the first session of the sales at Oaklands Junction.
The 2019-20 season saw Pat and Yabby Dams produce winners including the star trotting performers Don’t Care, Im Ready Jet, Always Ready and Dance Craze, all of whom were nominated for and won their respective Victorian Breeding Championship categories.
The farm was recognised with the inaugural Maori Miss Award when La Coocaracha was named Australian Trotting Broodmare of the Year by Harness Racing Australia, while three of Pat’s mares were nominees in our own Niota Victorian Trotting Broodmare of the Year - La Coocaracha, Class of Her Own, and ultimate winner, I’m Ready Set.
Additionally, Quaker Jet, Love You and Used To Me have all finished the season in the top three 2YO & 3YO Trotting Sires (sponsored by Haras des Trotteurs), and I’m Ready Jet recorded one of the top four Aldebaran Time Excellence trotting mile rates, coming in under TR1:57 for the first time this season (TR1:55.6). A truly remarkable season for a breeder by any standard.