Hawke's Bay Racing is honouring a huntsman and stalwart of the province, Murray Thompson, who died on Wednesday.

Thompson, 72, of Hastings, is the brother of former equestrian and thoroughbred trainer Sue Thompson.

"Murray was a wonderful horseman," said HB Racing CEO Andrew Castles. "He had been the clerk of the course at Hawke's Bay Racing for decades and still up to recently acted in that capacity."

Castles said HB Racing took the opportunity recently to initiate a trophy over the Bostock New Zealand Spring Racing Carnival.

Advertisement

"It will be known as the Murray Thompson Memorial Trophy and awarded to the leading rider on the points system over the three days," he said, referring to the Bay carnival comprising the Tarzino Trophy Daffodil Raceday on Saturday, September 1, the Windsor Park Plate on Saturday, September 22, and the Livamol Classic on Saturday, October 6.

Castles said the main role of the clerks of the course was to ensure the jockeys and horses were safe on the track so HB Racing felt it was only appropriate to obtain a trophy for jockeys in recognition of Thompson's many years dedicated to the course in Hastings.

The board, he said, had unanimously passed the move to initiate the gesture.

"I sent him a letter on the back of the board meeting and got it to him, outlining that was their wish," Castles said, thrilled to have received the support of the Thompson family to go ahead.

The winning jockey also will receive a $500 voucher from Winiata Saddlery.