National Horseracing College graduate Gemma Hogg, who is assistant to North Yorkshire trainer Mickey Hammond, has added another string to her bow – as a writer. Her autobiography, Stable Lass, is due to be published on 5 April.
Described by journalist and TV pundit Brough Scott as “vividly funny, shockingly frank, deeply passionate and movingly sensitive,” Stable Lass traces Gemma’s career in horseracing since she graduated from the NHC in 1998 at the age of 17.
Placed with the Hammond stable in Middleham, she has remained there, working her way from groom to assistant trainer, and taking on the role of mentoring new staff, as well as caring for retired racehorses.
Gemma’s skills and dedication were recognised in 2016, when she was named Employee of the Year in the prestigious Godolphin Stud & Stable Awards, where she also won the individual Leadership category.
That was a far cry from her first days in racing, living away from home for the first time, and adapting to the long hours and hard work, often in treacherous weather, of life in a racing stable.
In the words of the publishers, Stable Lass “brings to life the characters around the yard, from her straight-talking boss to the jockeys starving themselves to make weight, the wealthy owners and the other stable lads and lasses who come from a range of different places and backgrounds.”
They add: “Gemma takes us into the closed world of a top racing yard, from the elation of having several winners in one day to the almost indescribable grief of losing a horse.”
*Stable Lass, by Gemma Hogg, is published by Macmillan on 5 April, in hardback at £16.99 and as an ebook at £6.57.