Autumn Carnival Awards
Riharna Thomson named as Sydney Strapper of the Year 2016-2017
Riharna Thomson was a stablehand/track-rider with the Keith Dryden & Scott Collings training partnership at Canberra & Goulburn.
A regular at Sydney race meetings, Riharna’s gentle manner and dedication to her duties made her a stand-out amongst her peers. Even those who did not know her name, knew who she was because her professionalism left a deep impression on any who observed her.
“Riharna was one of the most loyal and outstanding employees I have employed in my 30 years as a trainer” said Keith Dryden. “I cannot recall her ever being late for duties or having a sick day. On many occasions after returning from interstate raceday engagements late in the evening, she would not leave until those travelling horses were all bedded down and she had prepared the race gear bag for the following day.”
While being such a fine employee, Riharna still found time to undertake a 4-year part-time university course in politics.
Tragically, Riharna was killed in a trackwork accident at Canberra racecourse in March 2017.
The award was accepted by her parents Ian & Carolyn and her brother Braden.
(The Sydney Strapper of the Year Award is sponsored by Racing NSW and coordinated by Australian Racing Christian Chaplaincy. It is presented at the NSW Racehorse Owners Association “Night of Champions”. Photos courtesy of Racing NSW and the NSW Racehorse Owners Association)