Cheltenham not Chelmsford !

While Chelmsford is more our usual hunting ground maybe Rae and Rachel should have Cheltenham in their sights after their own Kutaiba ran away with the bumper in some style yesterday at Huntingdon on her racecourse debut !

She was bred by Shadwell and comes with a beautiful pedigree as she is by Golden Horn (winner of the Derby, Eclipse, Irish Champion Stakes and the Arc') and is closely related to the 2014 Oaks winner Taghrooda. Rachel picked her out at Tattersalls December Mares Sale last year as an unraced two year old who topped 16.3 hands high then and is even bigger now ! It was clear that she was not a horse for anyone in a hurry but luckily she had found the right owners in Rae and Rachel who have patience in abundance. Kutaiba had a spell turned away in the field which gave her huge frame time to mature and when she came back into work it was a slow progession, but progression it was and so a National Hunt flat race was targeted at Huntingdon.

Daryl Jacob was booked and Kutaiba made the short trip to our local National Hunt track accompanied by Dan and Georgia. She was clearly the standout in the paddock and the money came for her while the race itself could hardly have been more straightforward. She travelled strongly throughout and certainly appreciated every yard of the distance which was just a shade over one mile and five furlongs. Once Daryl got to work on her she went about her job very professionally and in the last furlong drew away to win by an impressive four and a quarter lengths. 

So there is certainly a bright future in front of this imposing filly and we are delighted for Rae and Rachel. Thank you to Daryl Jacob for riding her and also to Dan (assistant trainer) and Georgia who looked after her at the races. Plus, a huge well done to Amelie who rides her at at home. Great job team !

It's number 9 for wonderful Aramis Grey !

The Musketeer's amazing mare Aramis Grey notched up a ninth career win at Kempton last night. The gallant grey has now won four races this season at four different racecourses and unbelievably at five years old she is still improving. This was her thirteenth run of 2022 and she obviously thrives on her racing.

Yesterdays win followed up last months success at Chelmsford however this was a tougher assignment being a Class 3 Handicap. Several of the owners were able to make the trip to Kempton, these were Peter Sakal, Alan Davies and Ann and Darren Lewitt and we are sure the remaining members roared her home just as loudly watching on TV !

Regular pilot Callum Shepherd was back on board and they have formed a great partnership. She was drawn 3 and as they jumped from the stalls she was body slammed by the horse next to her but our battle hardened Aramis was unfazed and being the professional she is just settled into her rhythm and got on with her job. Travelling well throughout and buried among horses in the middle of the field she occupied a slightly more prominent position than she usually does. Going into the final furlong Callum's timing was impeccable as he brought her rallying down the outside to hit the line a neck in front of the favourite Apollo One. This race was the last chance to qualify for the London Sprint Series Final and Rae has entered her this morning. She fully deserves to take her chance.

Our warmest congratulations to the Musketeers and a big thank you to Callum Shepherd for a fantastic ride. Well done to the team at home who keep Aramis happy and healthy and the biggest well done of all to our superstar herself !

Annual yearling parade

On Saturday we held our annual yearling parade which was very well attended by owners old and new plus their guests.

This was also the day when we announced the yearlings for our new three horse syndicate for 2023. The syndicate does not yet have a name so any ideas welcome please ! Rae had already selected two of the yearlings for the members and they were the filly by Harry Angel out of L'Eglise plus the Havana Grey filly out of Soul Searching. That just left the third one to be chosen on the day and Rae decided it would be a fun idea to draw the name out of a hat. Chris and Lesley Mills young granddaughter Ellie drew the name and revealed that the final yearling was the Masar filly out of Ape Attack, much to the member's delight. They have three super fillies and we wish them the best of luck going forward.

Those who couldn't be present on the day were sent videos and photographs of their horses parading. These included Derek Willis whose newly named Malibu Rising is a lovely filly by Expert Eye out of La Chapelle, Eamonn Duggan's homebred Lia Rose, named after his little granddaughter, this grey filly is by Ulysses out of Rosa Grace, and Keith Walton and his family's filly by Due Diligence out of Really Chic. Keith has reserved the name Family Matters so she will be named in due course.

The Rainy Day Partnership's new yearling was on show, a filly by Camelot out of Whirlygig from a family that Rae knows well. We were delighted that Jon and Sophie Mitchell could attend as they were able to see their Postponed filly out of Indicia as well as the Camelot x Whirlygig (they are also members of the Rainy Day Partnership). It was great to see Bob Goodes and Barry and Alex Stewart of the Storm Again syndicate whose colt by Tasleet out of Mawqed had only arrived into the yard the day before. Barry and Alex were late arrivals and literally walked into the yard just as their colt was about to parade ! We were also delighted to see Colin Joseph was able to make it, owner of the two year old filly Show of Hands. Out of the three fillies for sale on the day interest has been expressed in Noble Mission x Volver and Tasleet x Alwafaa. The filly by Camelot out of Trail of Tears is still for sale but with the black type in her pedigree and the second dam being the super sprinter Cherokee Rose it won't be long before she is snapped up too.

We welcomed John Brosnan and his father Billy who are interested in ownership and we hope they enjoyed the morning and meeting some of our existing owners. The food was provided by Jo Sharkey at Newmarket Secret Kitchen and as usual was enjoyed immensely ! Thank you Jo. Special thanks to all of the hardworking team behind the scenes at Chestnut Tree Stables who helped to make the morning a success. Final thanks to our fantastic owners for their ongoing support and we wish all of them the very best of luck with their lovely horses in the future.

Two out of two for the Musketeers !

What a week it has been for The Musketeers, five days on from Aramis Grey's win at Chelmsford the syndicate's other horse Cry Havoc returned to the Essex track to record her second win of the season.

Cry Havoc's return to form has been nothing short of remarkable considering the life saving hock surgery she endured last year. She has now had back to back wins with this latest victory coming after her win at Lingfield in August. Over her favoured trip of seven furlongs and ridden once again by Ray Dawson she was well fancied for this Class 4 handicap. Breaking from stall 8 she was covered up in midfield until the final furlong when she began her challenge and stole a length and a half on them. However she had a fight on her hands as the fast finishing Odisseo closed her down but thankfully for us the line came just in time. 

The winning margin was a nose but this was a well judged ride by Ray Dawson and our thanks go to him. We are delighted for the Musketeers and so pleased for Bola who looks after her at home.

Amazing Aramis Grey

The Musketeers syndicate were rewarded with an eighth win from their amazing mare Aramis Grey who plundered yet another victory on Saturday night at Chelmsford.

Her last win was at Windsor in May but she has run well and been placed a few times since. At this time of year our syndicate members decide whether to keep their horses in training for another year or not. Following a vote the decision was made to carry on with the now five year old Aramis Grey and she has rewarded them immediately proving that she still has plenty left in the tank as far as racing is concerned. 

Saturday's race was the feature on an eight race card at Chelmsford. She was strongly fancied and with familiar face Callum Shepherd riding her the signs were positive. Racing in her customary fashion towards the rear of the field she came wide as they turned into the straight and made easy work of her seven rivals to go on and win by a cosy three quarters of a length. The Musketeers were represented on the evening by Ann and Darren Lewitt who were understandably delighted. Ann was in tears and this just shows how much racehorses can mean to their owners. All of the Musketeers are so proud and happy of Aramis Grey as are we here in the yard. Congratulations to them and thank you to Callum Shepherd who gave her a great ride yet again. We would like to say well done to Lewis Purdie who led her up as this was his first winner for the yard.

Keep going Aramis, you really are amazing !