Calling all budding young horseracing writers

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  • Entries are now open for the 2011 Wills Writing Awards — horseracing writing awards for young people.

    The awards started in 1993 in memory of journalist and amateur jockey Martin Wills, are for a piece of creative writing based around a horseracing theme, and can be factual or fictional.

    Particular importance will be paid to originality, imagination, entertainment value and construction. The quality of writing is key but a detailed knowledge of horseracing is not essential.

    There are three categories — under 26, under 19 and under 15 — with a total prizefund of £3,125. The winning pieces will be published in the Racing Post and The Irish Field.

    Brough Scott, chairman of the judges for the ninth successive year, said: “The Wills Writing Awards offer the two things aspirant writers always want — fame and money! They are the best thing young racing scribblers have ever had.”

    The six judges are Racing Post founder and H&H columnist Brough Scott, H&H racing reporter Marcus Armytage, twice Racing Writer of the Year and former Racing Post journalist David Ashforth, The Guardian’s Matthew Engel, author Sean Magee and Martin Wills’ sister Catherine.

    The maximum word count is 1,200 for under 26s/19s and 800 for under 15s.

    Previous winners include H&H’s racing editor Catherine Austen.

    The awards will be announced and presented at Newmarket’s Craven Meeting in mid-April, when all six prize winners will be given an expenses paid day’s racing.

    Entries should be submitted via the website by 28 February.

    For more information visit: www.willswritingawards.co.uk

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