06/03/2014 9:57AM

DRF's Russo, ESPN.com's Ehalt win Hirsch writing awards


ELMONT, N.Y. – Nicole Russo of Daily Racing Form and Bob Ehalt of ESPN.com have been named by the New York Racing Association as winners of the fifth annual Joe Hirsch Memorial Writing Contest, recognizing the best in print and Internet coverage of the 2013 Belmont Stakes won by Palace Malice.

Russo won the follow/wrap-up division of the award for her story, “Campbell, Dogwood partnership enjoy another classic success,” which discussed the impact of the Belmont victory on Dogwood Stable’s Cot Campbell, who pioneered the concept of racing partnerships.

Ehalt won the feature/advance division for his story “Will it be the year of the filly?” The article detailed the decision by Mike Repole to run the filly Unlimited Budget against male rivals in the Belmont.

Russo and Ehalt were to be honored Wednesday at the annual Belmont Stakes post-position-draw breakfast. The awards are named in honor of Joe Hirsch, the iconic DRF executive columnist who died in January 2009.