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The elite of the racing world gathered on Thursday, 20 March to celebrate the achievements of flat and jump jockeys at the 18th annual Lesters Awards.

One of the stars of the night was national hunt jockey AP McCoy, who was crowned Jump Jockey of the Year for the eleventh time.

Jamie Spencer, the current joint champion flat jockey with Seb Sanders, was awarded Flat Jockey of the Year for the second time.

The Racing Post Flat Ride of the Year went to Paul Hanagan for his ride on Fonthill Road in the Paddypower.com Sprint Handicap on 13 October 2007.

Paul was up against Ryan Moore for his ride on Medley in the JPRA Sceptre Stakes (13 September 2007) and Jimmy Fortune on Winker Watson in the TNT July Stakes (12 July 2007)

Andrew Thornton took the At the Races Jump Ride of the Year for his performance on Miko de Beachene in the Coral Welsh National on the 27 December 2007.

Andrew fought off competition from Graham Lee for his ride on L’Antartique in the Paddy Power Gold Cup Chase (17 November 2007), AP McCoy’s ride on Straw Bear in the Stan James Christmas Hurdle (26 December 2007) and Christian Williams on Tension Point in the Coventry Telegraph Juvenile Novices Hurdle (15 July 2007).

Ruby Walsh was named The Weatherbys Bank International Jockey of the Year while Desert Springs Resort and Golf Club Conditional Jockey of the Year was Tom O’Brien.

Apprentice Jockey of the Year went to William Buick and Lady Jockey of the Year to Hayley Turner.

Russ Garrity collected The Allied Irish Bank Jump Jockey Special Recognition Award. Russ, who was Mick Easterby’s long-time jump jockey, retired last year.

The inaugural Chief Executive Award, recognising services provided to the jockeys profession by an individual was presented to trainer Reg Hollinshead.

Now aged 84 Reg’s career as a trainer has spanned more than 60 years, during which he has mentored several leading jockeys including Kevin Darley, Walter Swinburn and Leighton Aspell.

Kevin Darley was awarded the Betfair Flat Jockey Special Recognition Award. Kevin retired last November having been a jockey for over 31 years.

More than 500 guests attended the event, which was held at the Hilton Metropole in Birmingham.