Robert Mabbett made history by becoming the first ever Betfred winner of the Racing Post/SIS betting shop manager of the year award!

The 37 year old, who has only been in the industry five years has always put the customer first – and has made great efforts to ensure his Welton Road shop in Brough, East Yorkshire is at the centre of the community.

He impressed judges after taking part in a cyclathon to raise money for the mental health charity Mind and helped raise £120 for MacMillan with a coffee morning supported by regulars at his busy shop.

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Already crowned regional champion on the north-east, father of two Mabbett was put forward into the final eight candidates for his outstanding efforts.

He was announced as the national champion at a glitzy award ceremony at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower Hotel in London.

After receiving the trophy award from England 1966 World Cup hat-trick hero Sir Geoff Hurst, Mabbett said:

“I’ve worked for Betfred for five years and I am absolutely delighted to be crowned Betting Shop Manager of the Year.

“I love working in sport and I love working with customers.

“This reward is not just for me but the fantastic team I have working with me.”

Betfred boss Fred Done said: “I am absolutely delighted we have won this prestigious award for the first time and all credit to Robert!

“He will be a great ambassador for our industry and it is well deserved.

“I would like to thank all the judges and everyone involved in this competition.

“This award is for everyone who works in our betting shops.”

Mabbett’s efforts have won him a VIP trip to Singapore in July next year for their Emirates Singapore Derby meet and a trip to Ascot in the private box of SIS.

Chairman the judging panel, Brough Scott said: “Robert emerges as a wonderful winner in an extremely high quality set of regional champions.

“I have no doubt he will prove a wonderfully positive ambassador over the coming year.”

Representative for award sponsors SIS, Helen Scott, added: “Yet again we were treated to eight excellent performances at final judging – each year the quality and calibre never ceases to impress.

“All of us in this industry should feel extremely lucky and proud that we have such talent representing us on the high street. Congratulations to Robert and his team, a very deserving champion.”

After celebrating with friends and colleagues in a London pub after the ceremony on Monday, hard-working Mabbett was typically back at Brough at 8.30am next day to get ready for work.

Asked if he has any advice to colleagues he said: “The customer is always right and you should always think as a manager how you can do things differently.”