Bart Cummings AM was one of Australia’s greatest ever racehorse trainers, passing away on 30 August 2015, aged 87.
Bart was a legend in not just horse racing but in Australian sport. His career spanned more than six decades and he was a household name. Known affectionately as the Cups King, Bart Cummings won no fewer than 12 Melbourne Cups – a record that is unlikely to be ever matched, let alone bettered.
Bart’s feature race wins included four Golden Slippers, five Doncaster Miles, seven Caulfield Cups, 13 Australian Cups, five Cox Plates and won in excess of 7,000 races and 268 Group 1 events. He also prepared the winners of 32 Derbies and 24 Oaks. Some of his Champion gallopers included Galilee, Light Fingers, Taj Rossi, Leilani, Beau Zam, Let's Elope, Saintly and So You Think.
In 2008, Racing NSW honoured Bart with the prestigious Bart Cummings Medal awarded to the most outstanding NSW performer among jockeys and trainers throughout the season.
Bart was made a member of the Order of Australia in 1982 for his services to the racing industry and nine years later was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame. Bart was also an inaugural inductee into the Australian Racing Hall of Fame and in 2007 Australia Post displayed his image on a postage stamp as part of its popular Australian Legends series.
Racing NSW introduced the Bart Cummings Medal award for the racing season 2008-09 which was taken out by jockey Hugh Bowman. The Medal is awarded for 'consistent, outstanding performances among jockeys and trainers at New South Wales metropolitan race meetings through the racing season'.
On a rotating basis, each judge on the seven-person media panel is allotted two Wednesday and two Saturday race meetings over a fortnight period, whereby they allocate the following points: 6-4-2 (Saturdays) and 3-2-1 (Wednesdays)
Points are tallied over the racing season to determine the winner which is presented at an awards ceremony held annually in August.