Sandra Gilmartin Racing Post/SIS Manager Of The Year

Sandra Gilmartin was announced as the Racing Post / SIS Betting Shop Manager of the Year, becoming the first manager of the Paddy Power shop to take the title.

Gilmartin, 49, runs the Coventry branch of Paddy Power’s Cross Cheaping and was revealed as the winner earlier this week when she received her award from Chris Hughes TV personality at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House Hotel in London.

Brough Scott, chairman of the judging panel, stated: “Sandra Gilmartin will bring an authentic, passionate voice to her role just when the industry needs it most.”

The award comes at a time when betting shop scrutiny is at its peak, but despite this, Gilmartin reaffirmed her love for the job as well as for her customers as she said she was going to use her new title to give a voice to other betting shop managers whom she believed to have the same views as her.

She was one of eight regional champions honoured at the ceremony, as she and deputy Roxanne Connolly presented a case to a panel of seven judges on why she deserved the overall title.

In addition to hearing the case of Gilmartin, judges heard from a mystery shopper who had frequented the branch of Cross Cheaping: “Staff were neatly presented, it was very busy but they knew customers by name. The manager and assistant had the shop under control, multi-tasking, chatting and offering drinks while tidying up. It seemed a very social place, the teamwork in this shop was uplifting.”

Gilmartin was born in Kilmessan, County Meath, and worked with BoyleSports in Ireland until she moved to Paddy Power. She has worked briefly in Canada before returning to Coventry in 2016.

Gilmartin was also awarded a racing trip to Hong Kong, courtesy of the Hong Kong Jockey Club, in addition to being the year’s Betting Shop Manager.

In addition, she will also be attending the Perry Barr greyhound track in Birmingham on November 16 to present the RPGTV St Leger trophy to the winning team before taking her Cross Cheaping staff to Ascot, where they will be treated from a hospitality box for a day of racing.