A Northumberland trainer is delighted that so many people jumped at the chance to become part of a horse racing ownership group.
The syndicate operation was set up last year by Simon Waugh Racing, which currently has a licence for 12 horses. The yard is located in the hamlet of Molesden and the professional jockeys employed include 2013 Grand National winner Ryan Mania.
The initiative to make owning a horse more affordable for county residents has been very successful so far and there are currently two Northumberland Racing Club (NRC) syndicates.
And the good news for those interested in joining the club is that there are more to come. Anyone can get involved for £45 a month.
One of the horses in NRC1, Total Assets, has made her mark this year by winning two races over hurdles under rules – one at Newcastle and the other at Kelso.
Simon said: “I had far too many of my own horses and so I thought the best thing to do was to lease some of them out. I asked Vicky Knox, marketing assistant at the yard, to help me run the syndicate as I couldn’t do it all myself.
“We quickly had about 20 people on board and then as word of mouth spread we managed to get up to our target of 30. It’s great that people in Northumberland can part-own a racehorse at no great expense.
“Total Assets’ victories were fantastic. At Newcastle, she battled to the line to win by a length and the noise from our contingent was amazing.
“They raised the profile of the NRC and we now have two thriving syndicates. We will be launching more of them as all the facilities are in place for me to train twice as many horses than I do at the moment.
“I do my homework and make sure they are fully prepared before I put them in a syndicate. Some of the horses I receive run on the flat but I have the flexibility to find out if they are better off going over hurdles. Hopefully, we will have a few different winners in the months ahead.
“Each NRC member is very important to us and open days and schooling days are held regularly for the owners to watch their horses being trained and speak to the jockeys.
“We offer a personal and friendly service because there is a social side to ownership and it’s good that members have opportunities to meet each other.”
The facilities at the yard include all weather gallops, grass gallops with schooling fences, a school and lunging pen and starting stalls.
During a recent schooling day, Ryan told the Herald: “I enjoy riding for smaller yards as there’s not as much pressure and when you win it means a lot more to them because the trainers and staff have to put in a lot of effort to get the horse ready for the race.
“Total Assets is a joy to ride. She is small, but she has the heart of a lion and wants to win races. Hopefully, she will have more good results next season.
“Everything you need to train a racehorse is here at Molesden. The gallops and jumps are excellent.”
Whilst Simon rode many winners himself, some years ago he decided to concentrate on the training and allow his daughter, Amie, and brother, Adam, to ride in point to points and hunter chases. They have achieved a number of successes, including victories at the annual Tranwell Point to Point.
Amie, who has worked for Paul Nichols in England and Irish trainers to learn a few more tricks of the trade, recently took out a B licence so she will be riding more horses for her father in the future.
“I still have the same amount of passion for training as when I started – developing unbroken horses through all the stages to get them running fast enough and in the right condition for racing is very satisfying,” added Simon.
For more information about Simon Waugh Racing and the NRC syndicates, email email@example.com or visit www.simonwaughracing.co.uk