Winning a 0-80 handicap worth £12,000 might not mean much to a Classic-winning trainer, but Hugo Palmer took great pride and delight in the victory of Pearly Star at Chester on Friday as it came on the card which remembered late staff member Jess Whalley.
A key part of Palmer’s team at his Cheshire stables owned by Michael Owen, Whalley died at the age of 25 in March despite colleagues performing CPR on her until a doctor and paramedics arrived.
In her honour, Chester staged the Remembering Jess Whalley Handicap at Friday’s fixture, which Pearly Star won for the yard.
“It really wasn’t long ago and Jess was a lovely girl who was a fantastic part of our team,” he said. “She was very popular and was great to have around – we miss her like mad.”