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All Aboard the Eurotunnel

All Aboard the Eurotunnel

The flat horses at Southgate Stables have been flying the flag since the turn of the new year and, although January and February have been relatively quiet with runners, we have so far produced 6 winners from 25 runners giving us a 24% strike rate.  Hopefully, this run of good fortune will stand us in good stead as we approach the start of an exciting new venture in France.  We have been granted a temporary training license by France-Galop and we will be able to have our first runners from the 1st April.  We currently have a select team of horses who will be based at our satellite yard in Lamorlaye and will be competing at some of the premier French racetracks.  Not only does France offer a higher level of prize money but also the Flat Owner’s Premiums which means, depending on the horse’s age, there will be an additional percentage of money available on top of any prize money won.  As a trainer, I feel that I should be looking for the best financial opportunities for my owners who have not only invested heavily into our sport but stuck with me over the last couple of testing years.  I am also reaching out to anyone who might be interested in joining us in this venture.  You will find more information on the website about available horses for France, or you may already have a horse in training that fits the bill.  If so, please do get in touch if you would like to be involved in some capacity.    

Our temporary satellite yard based in Lamorlaye, Chantilly

Ringo Starlight has proved to be very tough and consistent and to date has given his owner, Mr Paul Venner, two trips to the winner’s enclosure plus several placed efforts all over six furlongs.  His latest start over seven furlongs saw him hampered in final half furlong which stopped him in his tracks while challenging the two leaders.  Again, this is testament to his tough character which he showed in his two wins and we feel that seven furlongs might be the ideal trip for him going forward.

Dual winner Ringo Starlight striding out on the grass gallops

Oasis Irlandes arrived at Southgate Stables late last year and he immediately began to show us plenty of speed on the gallops.  We initially thought he might be quick enough for five furlongs and he wasn’t disgraced when finishing 4th over that trip on his debut.  However, once stepped up to six furlongs, he showed enough ability to win on his second start even though he was still incredibly green when hitting the front.  He then put in another solid effort when finishing a ½ length second in a novice at Wolverhampton giving the rest of the field 5 to 7lbs in weight.

Chateau d’If who runs under the Chasing Euros Racing Club banner came good for the Club’s members when winning at Lingfield under Rossa Ryan.  He was purchased at the Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training Sale with the primary purpose of a winter campaign in France.  Unfortunately, as France closed it borders to the UK due to Covid, we were unable to go ahead with our plans.  We decided to give him a holiday after winning and he will now head to our satellite yard and hopefully he can pick up more prize money and the additional owner premiums for being a French bred horse.

Chateau d'If who is about to embark on a French campaign for the Chasing Euros Racing Club

Baileys Eminence showed plenty of speed under Hollie Doyle to win at Chelmsford for G.R. Bailey Ltd (Baileys Horse Feed) over seven furlongs.  We tried him again over seven furlongs at Wolverhampton where it was obvious during the early stages of the race that he just has too much speed for that trip.  Going forward we will probably drop him back to six where he is certain to win again.  He is another horse that is French bred and will be able to avail of the owner premiums in France.

Marie Paradis provided the Amy Murphy Racing Club with yet another winner when coming home under star jockey Marco Ghiani.  This Club continues to flourish, and I am delighted that we have been able to provide the members with so many winners over the last couple of years.  As always, we are happy to welcome new members to the Club at any time especially anybody who is looking for an introduction into racehorse ownership. 

Marie Paradis & Marco Ghiani flying home at Lingfield for the Amy Murphy Racing Club

(Image courtesy of John Hoy

Tarbaan was another horse that was shrewdly picked up from the Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training Sale by LDS Bloodstock out of the Shadwell draft for the Constellation Syndicate & Partner ownership.  Previously unraced, he quickly began to show us signs of his talent in his work at home.  We took him to Southwell for his racecourse debut where he shaped nicely over a mile, however, it was evident that a step up in trip would be needed at some point.  Our hand was somewhat forced second time out as the only available race for him was over 1 mile 1 ½ furlongs.  Thankfully, Tarbaan relished the extra distance and took the race in convincing style under Callum Shepherd.  He really is an exciting prospect for his owners for the coming turf season.

Exciting prospect Tarbaan who won comfortably for the Constellation Syndicate & Partner

Pride Of America stunned us all with an incredible win at Newcastle having been away from a racetrack for 477 days.  That said, he had previously shown enough talent to warrant owners Kevin Freeman, Daniel MacAuliffe and Anoj Don persevering with him and a lot of credit must go to Sophie Buckley from Culworths Grounds who has worked incredibly hard in getting Pride Of America back to trainable form.  Thankfully, we were able to secure the services of Tom Marquand who had ridden Pride in his last two starts in 2020.  Ultimately, Tom gave him the perfect ride, allowing him to stride on in the early stages without doing too much and then, just when we thought the tank was empty, he was able to coerce a little bit extra from him without being hard on him. 

The stunning Pride Of America who produced a stunning win at Newcastle

Lastly, we have a small but select bunch of two year olds that are shaping up nicely for the turf season.  Last year, we mainly had a progressive bunch of youngsters, and this year follows in a similar vain.  There are, however, a couple of early types that we are excited about, and we are already looking forward to getting them started.  It’s all about hopes and dreams!   

The Class of 2022 learning their trade on Newmarket Heath


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