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A team member at the yard of Kingsclere trainer Andrew Balding, Leanne won the employee of the year category at a ceremony in London last night. She received the Godolphin Perpetual Trophy - and a cheque for £30,000, of which half is to be shared with her colleagues at Balding's yard - from jockey A P McCoy and presenter Clare Balding, her boss's sister.

Leanne greets Side Glance after the Mackinnon

There is little time for celebration because Leanne is back on her travels tomorrow when flying Side Glance to Dubai for the Carnival meeting. She has worked at Kingsclere since the age of 16, riding seven winners as an apprentice before taking on the travelling head groom's role responsible for high-profile racing forays around the globe.

Leanne says the the highlight of her 18-year career came last year when she took Side Glance to Australia, rode him in all his preparatory work after emerging from quarantine, and led him up to win the Gr. 1 Mackinnon Stakes on Derby Day at Flemington racecourse.

Speaking before the ceremony, Masterton said: "I love my job as much as I ever did and last year was an amazing one for both me and the yard. We had more than 100 winners for the first time and I took Side Glance to Australia to win the Mackinnon.

"That was a brilliant trip with a great bunch of people - now I'm looking forward to travelling him to Dubai."

The Stud and Stable Staff Awards was inaugurated in 2005 and is hosted each year by the BHA. Sixteen grooms and staff from racing stables and studs around Britain reached the final.

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