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LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Richard Edmondson of London's The Independent and Bill Heller, a freelance writer based in New York, were honored Wednesday night as this year's recipients of Breeders' Cup writing awards.

Edmondson was presented with the Joe Hirsch Breeders' Cup Newspaper Writing Award while Heller received the Bill Leggett Breeders' Cup Magazine Writing Award.

Honored for the best stories written about the 1999 Breeders' Cup Championship, the winners were announced at the National Turf Writers Association's annual awards dinner held at The Olmsted in Louisville, Kentucky. The awards were presented by D.G. Van Clief, Jr., president of Breeders' Cup Limited, and James E. "Ted" Bassett, chairman of Keeneland Association.

Heller currently writes for the Thoroughbred Times and The Backstretch. He won the 1997 Eclipse Award for Magazine Writing for his story, "The Times They Are a-Changin." Heller also recently authored the Go for Wand volume of the "Thoroughbred Legends" series, published by The Blood-Horse. Heller's winning story featured trainer Jimmy Toner and Soaring Softly, his Breeders' Cup and Eclipse champion mare.

Edmondson, a London-based writer, began his career with the Press Association, moving on to The Independent upon its launch. He currently serves as lead racing writer for the publication. Edmondson's story centered on the triumph of European turf star Daylami and the redemption of jockey Frankie Dettori after his much-publicized trip aboard Swain in the 1998 Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs.

This is the fifth year Breeders' Cup Limited has presented writing awards. The judging panel consisted of Maria Braden, a professor of journalism at the University of Kentucky; Nat Wess, a retired racing executive, writer and publicist; Carl West, editor of the Frankfort (Ky.) State Journal; and Patrick Crowley, a reporter and columnist for the Cincinnati Enquirer.





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