The Jockey Club of Canada Board of Stewards are proud to announce that R.J. (Russell) and Lois Bennett will be presented with the E.P. Taylor Award of Merit for their longtime involvement and commitment to Thoroughbred Racing in Canada.
A member of The Jockey Club of Canada for close to 40 years, Russell Bennett, along with his wife Lois, has been involved in Thoroughbred racing in Canada since the 1950’s.
The Bennetts have proven to be the most successful breeders in racing history in British Columbia, topping the Leading Breeder list in that province almost every year since 1982. They have been honoured nationally and provincially with inductions into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame and the British Columbia Horse Racing Hall of Fame. In 1983 R.J. Bennett was honoured with the Sovereign Award for Outstanding Breeder, the same year his homebred multiple graded stakes winner, Travelling Victor, became the first horse not raced in Ontario to win Horse of the Year honours as well as Champion Older Male.
Most recently, the Bennetts were awarded the Leading Breeder and Leading Owner titles in British Columbia for 2015 along with their homebred mare, Touching Promise, being named Horse of the Year and Champion Older Mare in B.C. The male division of the older horse category was awarded to another Bennett homebred Brass & Gold while their Catz on Fire shared the 3-year-old B.C. bred male with two other recipients in 2015. Touching Promise is also a Sovereign Award finalist for Champion Older Female in 2015.
The Bennetts own more than 40 broodmares and maintain a population of more than 100 Thoroughbreds at their Flying Horse Farm on the shores of Okanagan Lake in Westbank, British Columbia. Producing more than 50 stakes winners, their first stakes winner was Flying Magic, in 1967. A list of other successful stakes runners include, Brandy Magic, Skovinsky, Historical Devil, Tasty Victory, Travelling Round, Easy Triumph, Hurried Romance, Billy Blue, Lively Lord, Always a Dixie, and Multiple Graded Stakes winner Lord Nelson.
The recipient of the E.P. Taylor Award of Merit is decided by The Jockey Club of Canada Board of Stewards and is not necessarily awarded annually. Previously called the Man of the Year Award, The E.P. Taylor Award of Merit is earned by those who have positively impacted or contributed to the Thoroughbred Industry in Canada. Previous recipients of this award include E.P. Taylor, Jack Diamond, George Hendrie, Jim Coleman, George Gardiner, Ernest Samuel, and Charles Taylor.
Additional information about the Russell and Lois Bennett can be found here.