Josh Gifford Memorial Race is held at Fontwell

The Josh Gifford Memorial Trophy is presented at Fontwell
The Josh Gifford Memorial Trophy is presented at Fontwell
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A FORMER legendary jockey and Grand National winning trainer was remembered at Fontwell Park Racecourse on Sunday with the first-ever running of the Josh Gifford Memorial Race.

The well-know local trainer, who was based in Findon and sadly died last year, had a race named in his honour as Fontwell got their 2013 programme under way.

After their first two planned fixtures of the year were washed out, there were fears snow could wipe out Sunday’s All About The Horse raceday.

But the card, which featured their biggest race of the year, the £50,000 totepool National Spirit Hurdle, survived after the weekend brought no more than a few flurries of the white stuff.

The first running of the Josh Gifford Memorial Race was won by Noel Fehily on the David Pipe-trained Shoegazer.

The family of the champion jockey were present for the occasion – including his trainer son Nick and his daughter, Olympic-medal winning eventer Tina Cook.

Cook, from Findon, who won a silver medal in London last year, took time out to show her medal from London 2012 and talk about her experiences at the Games.

Fontwell’s general manager Tracy Skinner said: “It was great to see Josh Gifford so well-represented and so fondly remembered. The race in his honour will certainly be an annual event here now.”

The day’s main event, the National Spirit Hurdle was won by Daryl Jacob on Prospect Wells, who trainer Paul Nicholls says may now be Aintree-bound for the Grand National festival.

Horse-related sideshows included a chance to ‘meet’ a racehorse and a farrier demonstration.