Aspiring writer Georgie Hibbard has become the first dual winner of the Martin Wills Memorial Trust annual writing awards — a creative writing competition with a background in racing.
Twenty-year-old Georgie, from Wiltshire, won the under 26 category for her story Memento Mori —about the troubled life and subsequent suicide of a young jockey.
Georgie, who is studying English at Cardiff University told H&H: “People ask me whether its personal but I haven’t experienced a suicide in the family, I just thought it was an interesting topic.”
In 2006 Georgie took the under 19 award with her piece entitled Soldiers and Kings. She has now become the first person in the awards 16-year history to win twice.
She said: “I’m thrilled, it took a while to sink in. After winning the under 19 in 2006 Lady Wills commented that it would be amazing if I could be the first person to go on and win the under 26 award and from then that was my goal.
“After being shortlisted last year I struggled and fought to win again and I’d love a career in writing. I love every aspect of equestrianism from show jumping to racing and am also a massive fan of Formula 1 so sports writing would be my ideal job.”
A record 130 entries were received for the awards, which was this year opened to under 15s as well. The total prize money for the awards is £3,125 with Georgie taking £1,250 for her win.
The under 19 category was won by 17-year-old James Moloney-Quinn for his piece The Birth of a Passion, about working in a racing yard. Chloe Potts (14) took the new under 15 award with Fly Without Wings about the thrill of horse racing.
The awards were set up in memory of Martin Wills, an amateur jockey, point to point rider and journalist who died in 1992.