Budding racing writers are being given the opportunity to win £2,500 prize money as well as an expenses-paid trip to Newmarket and the chance to be published in the racing press, by the Martin Wills Memorial Trust.

The trust, which is in its 12th year, is a UK registered charity commemorating Martin Wills, amateur jockey, point-to-point rider, racing enthusiast and journalist, who died in April 1992, aged 39.

Individuals aged under 26 at 1 January 2004 (excluding employees of the national and racing press and previous winners in their category, who are not eligible) are invited to submit a journalistic article (either fact or fiction) of less than 1,000 words on, or with a background in, any aspect of horseracing.

The judges will be looking for originality, good use of language and entertainment in particular, and attach much more importance to quality of writing than a detailed knowledge of racing. They have also stressed that they are unlikely to be impressed by articles on racing politics or the future of racing.

The winner will receive £1,250 and a bronze trophy, and the winning article will be published in both the Racing Post and Irish Field. The runner-up will receive £750, and there is a prize of £500 for the other best entry from someone aged under 19 at 1 January 2004.

The awards will be announced and presented at Newmarket on Wednesday 14 April 2004, where the successful writers will be given an expenses paid day’s racing and a tour of two leading stables.

Typewritten articles should sent by 29 February 2004 to The Trustees, The Martin Wills Memorial Trust, Henley Knapp Barn, Fulwell, Chipping Norton, Oxon OX7 4EN. Articles can also be faxed to (fax: 01608 678 052) or e-mailed to willsct@ukonline.co.uk. Submissions should include the writers name, date of birth, address and telephone number, and must not be published prior to the announcement of the winners.

For urther information on the awards visit: www.mrwc.org.uk