Aston Rowant handler Alan Hill has spoken of his great sense of pride at being crowned champion trainer.
Hill’s title was confirmed following the final meeting of the season at Umberleigh, near Barnstaple, on Saturday.
He topped the table in the Connolly’s Red Mills Trainers’ Championship (for handlers with eight horses or more) with 27 winners.
It saw him finish six ahead of Cherry Coward and Ed Walker, who tied for second.
Hill, who took over the training of the point-to-pointers from his wife, Lawney, at their Woodway Farm in 2005 when she was granted a professional licence, had established a clear advantage going into the final month of the season, but he refused to take anything for grant.
“As I kept saying to a lot of people Liverpool looked like they were going to win the league at one stage,” remarked the ardent Reds fan.
“It is a new championship. It is only in its second year, so it has never been recognised before.
“I think if anyone says you are a champion in whatever sport you do you are going to be proud of it because you have had a good season.”
Hill operated at an impressive strike rate, with his tally of winners coming from just over 80 runners, with a mild winter aiding his cause.
He said: “We never set out to win it and never dreamt I had a yard of horses strong enough to win it, but there has been a lot of hard work by the staff.
“The most important thing about the season was that all the horses ran up to form and have been well, and the weather has let us train them.”
Sharp Suit led the way for Hill with four wins plus a hunter chase success at Cheltenham, while Start Royal, with three wins and a hunter chase win at Fontwell also starred, along with Ravethebrave, who won four times between the flags.
Now Hill’s thought are already turning to next season.
“The worst bit is going to be trying to do it again,” he added.
“Like all things it is great winning it, but then there is obviously added pressure trying to defend it.”
2:00pm Thursday 3rd September 2015
IT was a case of damage limitation at Silverstone on Sunday in the pouring rain.
10:40am Thursday 3rd September 2015
Williams Martini Racing have confirmed that the partnership of Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas will be retained for a third season in the 2016 FIA Formula One World Championship.
9:30am Thursday 3rd September 2015
RUPERT Evans knows what it is takes to win the Minor Counties Championship as an Oxfordshire player, but admits beating Cumberland in this year’s final as coach would be just as special.
9:10am Thursday 3rd September 2015
MICHAEL Appleton is happy none of his players were nominated for a monthly award as he seeks to keep Oxford United under the radar.
9:00am Thursday 3rd September 2015
Oxfordshire ended sixth out of seven teams in the Home Counties League when they lost 132-100 to Bucks at Bletchley in their final game of the campaign.
8:00am Thursday 3rd September 2015
Woodstock Harrier James Bolton leads Abingdon AC’s Paul Fernandez by just one point ahead of tonight's final round of the Motavation Series in Oxford.
7:00am Thursday 3rd September 2015
Elizabeth Dorey represented England for the first time at the European Junior Touch Championships at Nottingham – just missing out on glory.
7:00am Thursday 3rd September 2015
Some of the county’s brightest young sporting talents are looking for glory in Manchester as they compete in the Sainsbury’s School Games, which get under way today.
More than 1,600 school-age athletes from around the country will descend on Manchester for the four-day multi-sport event – 15 of whom will be looking to bring a medalback to Oxfordshire.
Six of those will be competing in hockey, with Jona Boender (Abingdon), Niall Devaney (Oxford), Finn Dunleavy (Woodstock), Louisa Heathcote (Banbury) and Storm Sunderland (Deddington) all representing England sides, while Witney’s James Palmer has been selected for Wales.
Bloxham School pupil Heathcote, who is 17, will be representing England Girls White.
She is relishing the chance to shine saying: “I’m so happy to have been selected.
“My aim is to enjoy myself, but also play the best hockey I can throughout the tournament.”
Four Oxfordshire youngsters will be competing in athletics, which takes place tomorrow at the 6,500-capacity Manchester Regional Arena.
Luisa Chantler-Edmond (Headington), Emily Thompson (Banbury), Sam Way (Chipping Norton) and Ryan Craze (Didcot) have been selected to represent the Midlands.
Bicester duo Kieran Bird and Thomas Thornley and Faringdon’s Emily Nesbit will all represent England East in swimming.
Bicester Blue Fins swimmer Thornley, 15, said: “I feel very privileged to have been asked to compete in the Sainsbury’s School Games.
“It will be a great opportunity for me to develop as a swimmer and as an athlete overall.
“I can’t wait to get there!”
Oxford’s Saskia Freitas-Shoeffel will feature for England cadet women in volleyball.
And Benj Scheider, from Abingdon, completes the strong contingent from Oxfordshire with his selection for the England fencing team.
8:00am Wednesday 2nd September 2015
JAMES Roberts has been earmarked for a loan move away from Oxford United, but head coach Michael Appleton was quick to make it clear the striker has a bright future at the club.
6:08pm Wednesday 2nd September 2015
Bob Allsworth took two wins as Vikings whitewashed West Oxford Democrats Club.