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This season’s premier Melbourne jockey will be the inaugural recipient of the Roy Higgins Medal.

Racing Victoria has introduced the award to honour the champion jockey who died last month at the age of 75.

Higgins won the Melbourne jockeys’ premiership a record-equalling 11 times between 1965 and 1978 to match the deeds of Billy Duncan who was a champion rider of the 1920s and 30s.

Higgins rode two Melbourne Cup winners among more than 2300 victories which includes more than 100 Group One winners.

Racing Victoria chief executive Bernard Saundry said the Roy Higgins Medal was the perfect way to honour an icon of the sport.

“We expect that the Roy Higgins Medal will become a coveted honour and memento for recipients,” Saundry said in a statement.

Current star jockey Damien Oliver delivered a eulogy at Higgins’ funeral at Flemington racecourse.

An eight-time winner of the Melbourne jockeys’ title, Oliver is in the box seat to win the first Roy Higgins Medal with a 13-win lead over his nearest rival Craig Williams.

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