Thursday 11 August

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Five horses received votes in the tight contest for the 2016 NZ Thoroughbred Horse of the Year title.

Caulfield Cup winner Mongolian Khan repeated his 2015 triumph but in contrasting fashion.

He received all bar one of the votes cast for Horse of the Year in 2015, while he headed off stablemate Turn Me Loose, who was a dual Group I winner in Australia, by just one vote this year.

Two Thousand Guineas winner Xtravagant and New Zealand Derby winner Rangipo also received votes as Horse of the Year, as did Kawi, who won three Group I races.

The voting was particularly tight in two other categories this year, with Jack Romanov and Sea King sharing the Jumper of the Year title, while just one vote separated the top two contenders for Trainer of the Year.

In 2015, the smallest margin between first and second was 10 votes and in all the other awards involving the voting panel, the winning margin was at least 20.

The 2016 winners were announced at the Horse of the Year Awards Dinner in Auckland last Sunday night.

The voting figures in each category were:

Horse of the Year: Mongolian Khan 20; Turn Me Loose 19; Xtravagant 6; Kawi 2; Rangipo 2.

Champion Two-Year-Old:  Sacred Elixir 26; Heroic Valour 19; Luna Rossa 2; Xiong Feng 1.

Champion Three-Year-Old: Xtravagant 34; Rangipo 13; Sofia Rosa 3; Tavago 1.

Champion Sprinter: Turn Me Loose 28; Xtravagant 21; Ryan Mark 1.

Champion Middle Distance Horse:  Turn Me Loose 33; Kawi 16; Volkstok’n’barrell 1.

Champion Stayer:  Mongolian Khan 50.

Champion Jumper: Jack Romanov 18; Sea King 18; High Forty 10; Wee Biskit 5.

Dunstan Trainer of the Year: Stephen Autridge & Jamie Richards 18; Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman 17; Tony Pike 13.

FastTrackinsurance Jockey of the Year: Lisa Allpress 37; Opie Bosson 3; Matthew Cameron 2.

FastTrackinsurance Jumps Jockey of the Year: Shaun Fannin 44.

FastTrackinsurance Owner of the Year: JML Bloodstock 30; Raffles Dancers 16; NZ Thoroughbred Holdings 2; Kelvin Tyler 1.

Media Award:  Dennis Ryan 16; Mark McNamara 13; Steve Davis 12; Michael Holland 8.

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