Horse racing: Awards for Hamilton and Musselburgh

HAMILTON Park and Musselburgh were last night heralded in racing's National Innovation Awards by judges from Racing for Change and the Racecourse Association for their efforts to sell the sport to new audiences and develop original means of generating income.

While Redcar was judged to be the overall winner, Hamilton were singled out for generating profits for racing by staging a concert by former X-factor boy band JLS, while Musselburgh was recognised for creating a special Edinburgh Cup racing fixture which generated an attendance increase of a third.

Chairman of Racing Enterprises Ltd, Chris McFadden, said: "In pressing economic times, racecourses have increasingly relied on their commercial enterprise and flair to maintain their successes. The racing industry has to be willing to try new things and take risks."

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Meanwhile, Noel Fehily will get the leg-up on Kauto Star in the William Hill King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day.

The talented rider has been called into the breach by Paul Nicholls since stable jockey Ruby Walsh suffered a double leg break at Down Royal at the start of the month.

Fehily partnered Master Minded, who like Kauto Star is owned by Clive Smith, to a facile victory at Ascot on Saturday, and has now been given the plum ride on Boxing Day as Kauto Star chases an historic fifth consecutive win in the Kempton showpiece.

Another intended runner in the Kempton contest, Gold Cup winner Imperial Commander, is recovering well from the minor injury he suffered at Haydock on Saturday.

Nigel Twiston-Davies' runner made a winning return to action in the Betfair Chase on Merseyside at the weekend, but returned to the winner's enclosure with a cut to his leg. His trainer said he would have to be box-rested for a week but would then need to return to work if he was going to be ready for the King George VI Chase .