I am about to enter a new phase of my training career after Rhonehurst was sold (subject to contract) suddenly a few weeks ago.
I have been at Rhonehurst for thirty seven years, training over eleven hundred winners, including six at the Cheltenham festival, two Hennessy's and a Grand National so leaving there will be a wrench.
I had tried to buy the yard back when it first went on the market three years ago but it was unrealistically priced and sadly the owner wouldn’t budge, I had a client who tried again twelve months ago and he remained keen but then COVID happened, so it was not meant to be.
Due to the speed and shock of the situation it left my wife and I in turmoil for a couple of weeks and I had seriously considered retiring......
Since then we've been completely overwhelmed by the response from our owners and friends and that has given us the lift we needed to look for another premises.
I've trained in Lambourn my entire career and the facilities here are second to none, I didn't want to train anywhere else.
So I'm delighted to be able to announce that we have secured a three year lease of Neardown Stables from Charlie Mann who retired last week.
Neardown stables comprises of a modern barn style yard which has 44 boxes at the moment with room to easily add more as and when we need them, it’s very light and airy and from a staff point of view it will be a much easier yard to work in because everything is under cover so in the winter they’ll be very happy.
It's extremely spacious and all of the necessary facilities like the tack rooms, drying room, tool room, feed and medial rooms are all much larger than we’re used to.
It's a pretty yard and Charlie & Kate have always kept it immaculate so we’re very excited about the opportunity to train from there.
One door closes and another one opens, I'm a great believer in fate so I'm no longer going to look back but forwards with renewed enthusiasm.
The photographs below, thanks to Kate Mann, are of Neardown Stables and this will be our new base from July.