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Cheltenham Gold Cup, Champion Sprinter Syndicate

A-Z Syndicate Stories – Part 2

Written by

In The Paddock Staff

Posted on March 2, 2018

Part 2 of our A‐Z of syndicate, club or partnership‐owned horses features both a Cheltenham Gold Cup winner and champion sprinter.

H is for Heartache

One of the most popular winners of Royal Ascot 2017 was two‐year‐old filly Heartache, owned by 76 members of the Hot To Trot racing syndicate, the brainchild of Luke Lillingston and Sam Hoskins.

The Clive Cox‐trained filly produced a fantastic performance to defeat favourite Happy Like A Fool in the Group Two Queen Mary Stakes and went on to take the Flying Childers Stakes at Doncaster later that year.

She remains in training this season and her success has helped Hot To Trot expand into a second syndicate, 2 Hot To Trot, again restricted to 80 members and with six horses to share for the year ahead.

I is for Imperial Commander

The winner of eight of his 22 races, including the 2010 Gold Cup, Imperial Commander earned prize‐money in excess of £700,000 for the Our Friends In The North syndicate, headed by Ian Robinson who now runs Imperial Racing.

Imperial Commander reserved his best for Cheltenham, where he gained six victories, starting with a bumper in 2006 on his British debut. He enjoyed his high point in the Gold Cup, when he upstaged the so‐called title decider between Denman and Kauto Star, who had won the last three Gold Cups between them.

He sadly passed away last year, after which Robinson said: “He was exceptional and took us to places we could never dream of. We just hung onto his tail on the wonderful journey. He was like me in that he loved Cheltenham but wasn’t very good in the mornings.”

J is for Judicial

A hardy, late‐maturing sprinter, Judicial has thrived for being in a smaller stable and could yet go on to even better things this season for the Elite Racing Club.

He won three races as a two‐year‐old for Roger Charlton in 2014, before being transferred to Julie Camacho the following season. He has since won six races, breaking two course records and making the frame in a couple of Listed sprints.

He is set to be in action early in the upcoming Flat season and Elite members will also be cheering on no less than three of his younger siblings as he has a two‐year‐old half‐sister, three‐year‐old half‐ brother and four‐year‐old half‐sister all ready to race this year.

K is for Kyllachy

Owned by James Stafford’s Thurloe Thoroughbreds syndicate, Kyllachy was a superstar sprinter who has gone to enjoy almost as much success as a stallion of speedsters, siring a total of 390 winners before his retirement last year.

Kyllachy triumphed six times in his 12‐race career and became champion sprinter in 2002 after a dazzling season in which he won all but one of his five starts. Having risen through the sprinting ranks with success in the Palace House Stakes and Temple Stakes, the Henry Candy‐trained ace capped a fine career with a stunning Nunthorpe Stakes victory under Jamie Spencer.

Having been dropped out from the start, Kyllachy was switched to the opposite side of the course from which he was drawn in search for better ground. It was a brave move but one that paid off. With two furlongs to run he began to make sustained headway and he forged to the front close home to see off Malhub by half a length.

L is for Lil Rockerfeller

On‐course bookmaker Andy Smith is better known under the name of Festival Racing at the Cheltenham Festival, however he enjoyed last years meeting from a very different view point as Lil Rockerfeller finished second in the Stayers’ Hurdle.

Smith is one of four joint‐owners of the diminutive but powerful staying hurdler, who regularly fights it out at the very top level and chased home Nichols Canyon in the championship contest 12 months ago.

Having finished second at Fontwell last weekend, Lil Rockerfeller will return to Cheltenham later this month in a bid to go one place better.

M is for Million In Mind

One of the first top‐level racing partnerships, Million In Mind began back in 1990 with a single racehorse called Million In Mind and it has grown since, with the members enjoying more than 140 successes on 39 different racecourses including wins at the Cheltenham Festival and a host of other big races. Million In Mind partnerships all take place for a limited period with the horses sold at the Doncaster Sales each May at the end of the season.

M is also for Might Bite, the ante‐post favourite for this year’s Gold Cup, and owned by Knot Again partnership, comprised of a number of different owners who had previously been involved with other horses in Nicky Henderson’s yard.

N is for Northside Lodge

Another pioneer of syndicate ownership was Peter Harris, an avid racing fan who brought a number of people into the sport through his successful training operation in Hertfordshre.

One of Harris’s most successful performers was Northside Lodge, who scored five times in handicaps in 2002 and took his owners to some of the sport’s biggest racedays.

O is for Oh So Risky

It wasn’t just for the patchwork ‘crazy quilt’ silks that Oh So Risky became so well known as a hurdler in the early‐1990s. The winner of the 1991 Triumph Hurdle, he competed at the top level for many seasons and finished second twice in the Champion Hurdle.

After Oh So Risky had been denied by rags‐to‐riches mare Flakey Dove in 1994, his trainer David Elsworth observed: “It’s a good story for a mare like that to win – a better story than it would have been if Old Elzee had won a few quid.”

The Oh So Risky syndicate that owned the colours disbanded and in 2008, they were bought by Howard Spooner at auction for £24,000.

P is for Petrushka

One of a number of outstanding performers to have represented the Highclere Thoroughbred Racing syndicates, Britain’s most successful premium racing ownership group, Petrushka was an outstanding filly, winning the Irish Oaks before beating her elders in the Yorkshire Oaks and the Prix de l’Opera in a Group One hat‐trick.

Her trainer Sir Michael Stoute was a big fan, calling Petrushka “the best middle‐distance filly I have ever trained” and he certainly knew a thing or two about training good fillies.

Purchased for IR£110,000 as a yearling, Petrushka went on to be sold to Sheikh Mohammed’s Darley Stud for a then world record price of US$5.25million.

Q is for Quiet Reflection

If the yellow and white silks of the Ontoawinner syndicate were better known for northern‐trained sprint handicappers, 2016 marked a year of transformation for the group who have rapidly become one of the most popular and best‐established racehorse ownership organisations.

For 2016 was the year of Quiet Reflection, the amazing filly who was named champion sprinter after her victories in the Commonwealth Cup and the Haydock Sprint Cup.

A teacher, an office worker and a builder were part of the syndicate who owned Quiet Reflection, who was sold for 2,100,000 guineas to join the Coolmore breeding operation at the end of last year.

To start your shared ownership dream, search for your nearest syndicate opportunity here.

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