T H E M A G A Z I N E F O R T H E S O U T H W E S T R E G I O N O F T H E J O C K E Y C L U B 19/20 Jump Season
Trailblazer Bryony Frost makes history at The Festival TM presented by Magners
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claiming the title for the second time at Exeter. Bryony Frost and Present Man lit up Wincanton as they took the Badger Ales Chase for the second year running, and we very much look forward to seeing if they can make it three in a row this year. Impulsive Star came home in front in the McCoys Contractors Civil Engineering Classic Chase at Warwick, and we look forward to seeing what January’s feature race has in store. With the recent retirement of Ruby Walsh there will no doubt be a changing of the guard in the Weighing Room. We look at the career so far of Jonjo O’Neill Jnr, Rachael Blackmore and Bryony Frost as they cement themselves as some of the leading up and coming jockeys of their generation. I hope that you enjoy the 2019/2020 edition of Kalendar magazine and that we will welcome you to Cheltenham during the season.
s I write this we are enjoying the summer months at the Home of Jump Racing where the team at The Jockey Club
remain extremely busy preparing for the season ahead, which includes early planning for any changes we wish to introduce for next year’s Festival. It is an exciting time for all of us as we reflect on the season gone and
seek every opportunity to bring in further improvements for the 2019/20 season.
Reflection is a recurring theme in this magazine; there are always so many moments we so enjoy at Cheltenham and the 2018/2019 season was no different. Willie Mullins, The Festival’s winning most trainer, and last season inducted into Cheltenham’s Hall of Fame, finally won the Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup and we talk to him about what that moment meant. We chat to ITV Racing’s Ed Chamberlin, although football is where he made his name, his love of horseracing, and in particular Cheltenham, is something that has been with him for many years and he speaks fondly of The Festival™, presented by Magners in 2019 and the amazing ‘golden hour’ when Bryony Frost and Frodon won the Ryanair Chase and Paisley Park won the Sun Racing Stayers’ Hurdle. Cheltenham at its finest, producing emotional moments that rival any sporting event. The upcoming season at Cheltenham is no doubt going to provide us with many more magnificent moments and details about all the fixtures can be found throughout the magazine, as well as information about the other Jockey Club racecourses in the region, Warwick, Wincanton and Exeter. We all stage major racedays throughout the season, with the Christmas period being a time of feature racedays, Boxing Day at Wincanton, New Year’s Eve at Warwick and New Year’s Day at Exeter and Cheltenham. The Haldon Gold Cup produced another thrilling race with God’s Own
Ian Renton Regional Director, South West region of The Jockey Club
BRING THE PAGES OF KALENDAR TO LIFE Look out for the Augmented Reality logo throughout Kalendar which indicates where you can activate our AR functionality and bring the articles and
images to life. This exciting new feature brings a new dimension to your Kalendar experience. To activate the Augmented Reality either search the App store for ‘The Horse’s Mouth’ or scan the QR code here, download the App, then place your phone over where you see the logo and watch the image come to life. To activate the Augmented Reality either search the App store for ‘The Horse’s Mouth’ or scan the QR code here, download the App, then place your phone over where you see the logo and watch the image come to life.
Governed by Royal Charter, The Jockey Club invests every penny it makes back into British racing for the long-term health of the sport
The Jockey Club Regional Hospitality Sales Tel: 01242 537653 Regional Head of Sales – South West Lee Moulson firstname.lastname@example.org Regional Head of Partnershps Carey Weeks email@example.com Regional Communications Manager Sophia Dale firstname.lastname@example.org The Festival™ is a registered trademark of Jockey Club Racecourses Limited Published by
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Editor Sue Dando Art Editor Claire Leibrick Designers Matt Copland and Abigail Cole Account Director Laura Stringer Production Manager Kay Brown Luxury Creative Lead Nicola Preston Content and Brand Director Ryan Battles Agency Director Zoë Francis-Cox For all advertising enquiries, please call: 01242 537665 Special thanks to Megan Furse Images by: PA images, John Hoy, Cheltenham racing photos, Steven Cargill, Fran Altoft, Simon Hayward The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Jockey Club or Archant Dialogue. All rights reserved. Material contained in this publication may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without prior permission from Archant Dialogue. We accept no liability for any insert, display or classified advertisement included in this publication. While every care is taken to ensure that all advertisers are reliable and reputable, we can give no assurance that they will fulfil their obligation. © Archant Dialogue 2019
14 LIFE AS A RACING PHOTOGRAPHER Cheltenham’s official racing
CHELTENHAM 28 TATTERSALLS Find out what goes on behind the scenes at Cheltenham’s Tattersalls sales 48 THE CHELTENHAM CLUB Sign up for racing’s best seat in the house 50 THE FESTIVAL TM PRESENTED BY MAGNERS How four days of extraordinary lived up to its name in 2019 and will no doubt do the same in 2020 70 THE ORCHARD TM There’s even more to enjoy in The Orchard TM at the 2020 Festival 76 FAMOUS FANS Celebrity spotting at this year’s Festival 79 ENVIRONMENTAL MATTERS Sustainability and the environment is a hot topic at Cheltenham 81 MAGNERS Cheltenham celebrates its successful
photographer Francesca Altoft shares her favourite photos from the Home of Jump Racing 16 A WORD IN OUR EAR Readers’ questions answered and trainers’ top tips for the new season 18 THE COTSWOLDS GENTLEMAN Local style guru The Cotswolds Gentleman reveals the very best places to stay, eat and drink 20 THE NEW GUARD Ruby Walsh and Noel Fehily may be gone, but there’s a whole raft of up-and-coming jockeys vying for the top spot in racing 25 SEASON REVIEW Read on for our review of the 2018/2019 Jump season and preview of what’s to come this year 26 THE SHOWCASE Cheltenham’s season opener marks a key moment in many fans’ calendars 30 THE NOVEMBER MEETING The biggest meeting outside of The Festival lives up to the promise of fine racing and lots of fun to be had 36 PORTRAIT OF AN ARTIST Cheltenham favourite Clare Brownlow is unique among artists in that she paints using pheasant feathers 38 THE INTERNATIONAL Cheltenham’s Christmas meeting is full of festive fun
partnership with Magners 87 BALLOON FIESTA
Cheltenham’s inaugural Balloon Fiesta attracted spectators in their thousands
Keep up to date with raceday news,
FEATURES 8 ED CHAMBERLIN INTERVIEW ITV Racing presenter Ed Chamberlin on his love for Cheltenham and what he really thinks about AP McCoy
download your tickets and have the chance to enter competitions by downloading The Jockey Club App.
42 NEW YEAR’S DAY There’s much family fun to be had at Cheltenham’s 1st January meeting 45 FESTIVAL TRIALS DAY There’s lots of action at one of the most significant staging posts in the fun up to The Festival 68 SUSTAINABLE FOOD For Cheltenham’s Executive Chef Tom Parry, sustainability and locally produced food is key when planning food at the racecourse 72 WILLIE MULLINS INTERVIEW It took Willie Mullins two decades to win the Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup. He reveals how it felt to finally lift racing’s greatest prize 82 APRIL MEETING Kick back and relax at Cheltenham’s April meeting 85 RACE NIGHT Cheltenham’s season finale celebrates the sport’s grass roots 89 SOUTH WEST SYNDICATE Part own a racehorse by becoming a member of the Cheltenham and South West Syndicate 100 PETER FREEMAN Racing fan Peter Freeman hasn’t let blindness stop him from enjoying a 60-year love affair with Cheltenham 102 CHELTENHAM SUPER FANS Cheltenham’s super fans have a love for racing like no-one else
REGIONAL RACECOURSES 40 COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS The South West region celebrates Christmas at its racecourses like no other 91 EXETER Looking ahead to the new season at There are 19 fantastic fixtures to choose from at Warwick in 2019/2020. Will you be there? 95 WINCANTON You’re sure to be onto a winner when you visit Wincanton 97 JUNIOR JUMPERS There are amazing activities available when you join Junior Jumpers TM Devon’s Haldon Hill 93 WARWICK
PLANNING YOUR VISIT 6 SEASON DATES Fixtures for Cheltenham, Exeter, Warwick and Wincanton 99 SECURITY Providing a safe raceday experience 105 TRANSPORT All you need to know about getting to Cheltenham Racecourse 106 MEET A MEMBER Alice Thurtle reckons Cheltenham is better than Christmas.
For more information on all our racedays across the season, please
visit: cheltenham.co.uk warwickracecourse.co.uk exeter-racecourse.co.uk wincantonracecourse.co.uk
BRING THE PAGES OF KALENDAR TO LIFE Look out for the Augmented Reality logo throughout Kalendar which indicates where you can activate our AR functionality and bring the articles and images to life. This exciting new feature brings a new dimension to your Kalendar experience. To activate the Augmented Reality either search the App store for ‘The Horse’s Mouth’ or scan the QR code here, download the App, then place your phone over where you see the logo and watch the image come to life.
To activate the Augmented Reality either search the App store for ‘The Horse’s Mouth’ or scan the QR code here, download the App, then place your phone over where you see the logo and watch the image come to life.
SEASON DATES Wherever you choose to come racing this season with The Jockey Club, rest assured there are plenty of great fixtures in the South West region
jockey club south west | season dates
Governed by Royal Charter, The Jockey Club invests every penny it makes back into British racing for the long-term health of the sport.
EX EXETER CH CHELTENHAM WA WARWICK WI WINCANTON
Midweek Jumps Monday March 23 Spring Raceday Thursday March 26
Saturday January 04 Classic Chase Day Saturday January 11 January Jumps Tuesday January 14 Somerset National Day Thursday January 16 Afternoon Racing Tuesday January 21 Midlands Raceday Wednesday January 22 Festival Trials Day Saturday January 25 Midweek Jumps Thursday January 30
Midweek Jumps Wednesday April 01 Afternoon Racing
Tuesday April 07 St Mary’s Lands Cup Day WA Tuesday April 14 The April Meeting CH Wednesday April 15
The November Meeting Friday November 15 Saturday November 16 Sunday November 17 Winter Warmer Wednesday November 20 Afternoon Racing Thursday November 21 Devon Air Ambulance Raceday Sunday November 24 Thursday December 05 Festive Raceday Friday December 06 Eventmasters Christmas At The Races Thursday December 12 The International Friday December 13 Saturday December 14 Christmas Raceday Thursday December 19 Boxing Day Thursday December 26 New Year’s Eve Raceday WA Tuesday December 31 EX WA CH EX WI CH WA WI EX DECEMBER Afternoon Racing WI
Thursday April 16 Evening Racing Friday April 17 Family Fun Day Sunday April 19 Charity Raceday Thursday April 23 Season Finale (eve) Thursday April 23
The Racing TV Grand Season Opener Monday September 23 Warwickshire Food and Drink Raceday Tuesday September 24
Gentlemen’s Raceday ft Kingmaker Chase Saturday February 08 Sunday Racing Sunday February 09 Betway Kingwell Hurdle Day Saturday February 15 Devon National Raceday EX Friday February 21 Fabulous Fiver Friday WA Friday February 21 Midweek Jumps WI Wednesday February 26 WA EX WI
The Autumn Meeting Thursday October 03 Season Opener Thursday October 10 Season Opener Thursday October 17 Best Mate Beginners Chase Day Tuesday October 22 The Showcase Friday October 25 Saturday October 26 Combat Stress Centenary Raceday Sunday October 27 Haldon Gold Cup Day Tuesday November 05 Sporting Icon Raceday Friday November 08 Badger Chase Day Saturday November 09 Midweek Racing Wednesday November 13 NOVEMBER
Race Night (eve)
Friday May 01 Celebrate Somerset (eve) WI
Thursday May 07 Victory in Europe Raceday (BH) Friday May 08 Ladies Night (eve) Saturday May 09 Proudly Warwick Wednesday May 20 Celebration Racenight (eve) Wednesday May 27
Afternoon Racing Tuesday March 03 Midweek Jumps Thursday March 05 Countryside Raceday
Sunday March 08 The Festival™
Keep up to date with raceday news, download your tickets and have the chance to enter competitions by downloading The Jockey Club App.
presented by Magners Tuesday March 10 Wednesday March 11 Thursday March 12
New Year’s Day
Wednesday January 01 New Year’s Day Wednesday January 01
Friday March 13 Family Fun Day Sunday March 22
interview | ed chamberlin
BAFTA winning presenter ED CHAMBERLIN talks about his love for Cheltenham, ITV team banter, and that unforgettable golden hour at The Festival™ Presented by Magners in 2019 WORDS SUE DANDO PHOTOS GLENN DEARING ANCHORMAN
C heltenham is unique, it’s like nothing else in sport. Nothing comes close to it.” Ed Chamberlin is, without doubt, passionate about The Cheltenham Festival. Even before he got the job fronting ITV Racing, he would make the pilgrimage to Prestbury Park every year “meeting up with the same people, on the grass where the tarmac meets the rail. We had a lucky bin where we used to watch from…” Today, we meet at his house, where we sit in the garden on a gorgeous summer morning. He is courteous from the off, chatting affably about any subject he’s confronted with. No surprise then that the man with the microphone is so good at his job. Erudite and charming, opinionated but able to back up his thinking with facts, he’s a man whose enthusiasm for the sport of racing is self-evident. Occasionally leaning down to ruffle the ears of his black Labrador, Hebe, sprawled on the patio by
his side, Ed’s assessment of the 2019 Cheltenham Festival is as vivid as it gets, taking us back to the very heart of the action. “I think this festival was unique in that there was one massive highlight on the Thursday – the golden hour – that will go down as one of the great hours of sport,” he enthuses. “It was very special for so many different reasons. There was a buzz at Cheltenham in the morning, but that was mainly around Andrew Gemmell and Paisley Park in the Sun Racing Stayers’ Hurdle with everyone thinking what a wonderful story that was. What we didn’t realise is what was going to happen before then with Bryony [Frost] and Frodon, which was just extraordinary. Cheltenham always has a great atmosphere, but that hour had a buzz around it like I’ve never experienced before.” Anyone who’s watched ITV Racing’s coverage will be familiar with how unafraid Ed is to get emotional on air, and he admits that he struggled to keep it together as the afternoon unfolded. “Later that evening I said, ‘I think that was some of the worst presenting I’ve done’, but I couldn’t really care less because I was so caught up in the emotion of it all. Trying to find the words was quite hard, but Des Lynam, who I think is the best sports presenter there’s ever been, says the magic of it is that sometimes less is more. I was fully aware that the pictures were telling the story. Bryony’s interview after her race was part poet, part orator…
just magic. Our director Paul McNamara, who has directed sport at the highest level, said, ‘That’s one of the best interviews I’ve ever heard in sport, not in racing, in sport .’ “Then, Paisley Park’s win was very emotional for me because Emma Lavelle, the trainer, is a good friend. I’d spoken to her that morning. She looked like she was going to be sick, and to know the pressure she was under, the wonderful story that Andrew Gemmell had given us, the bravery of the horse. It was lump-in-your-throat time. I know it wasn’t just me, all the team were emotional – Francesca [Cumani] really struggled to cope with it. “I thought Cheltenham had already taken off the
day before with Altior and Tiger Roll. Altior is a full-on superstar and he delivered again. Horses like that are vital for us because racing relies on horses resonating with the public. That’s why Cheltenham is so special, because people at home know these horses; they’re household names. “And Tiger Roll’s win? That horse has touched me for a long time now. I always loved him because he was always this small, diminutive little tiger. It almost felt like David and Goliath in terms of stature, and Tiger has the heart of a lion. He really does. I wanted him to win so badly, and even I knew there was never a moment’s worry in that cross country race. He was just dynamite, in the form
interview | ed chamberlin
of his life, a little terrier around those fences. Everyone loved it.” A seasoned TV sports anchor, after 19 years presenting football, Ed left to return to his first love: horse racing. He admits that after taking over from Channel 4, ITV’s first raceday – appropriately at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day 2017 – was a baptism of fire. Or, more accurately, rain. “When we went on air, in the Parade Ring and at the heart of the action, it was raining hard and it turned into a monsoon. You couldn’t see Luke Harvey’s face. Sir Anthony McCoy, who’s a very close mate, is a miserable so and so at the best of times, but he gets even more miserable when it’s cold and gets even more miserable than that when it’s wet, so you can imagine what he was like. We had water in cameras, cameras that weren’t working – literally everything that could possibly go wrong pretty much did go wrong.” The fact that the fledgling team was determined to make ITV’s coverage different from anything that had preceded it added extra pressure to a sodden day’s racing. The channel came in for a lot of criticism the next day but, he counters: “We made the decision to be different, to change things from what had gone before. We judge a lot of it by numbers, and they’ve been pretty good from day one.” He’s bullish in his belief that ITV’s coverage is constantly evolving to meet the demands of viewers. “One thing ITV will never do is rest on its laurels; we’ll always look to improve. I love the wire-cam, I’d love that to be even longer to show off the Shopping Village. I’d love to extend it, to see what people are up to in The Orchard™, whether they’re looking at Bentley cars or sipping Champagne. The restaurants and the food have become so much a part of the raceday now, I want people at home to feel part of that experience.” It’s obvious to anyone watching the racing on TV that the onscreen team clearly get on. Asked if recently retired Ruby Walsh will be added to the roster for a bit of banter with fellow Irish ex-jockey AP McCoy, a wide smile spreads across Ed’s face. “Banter’s one way of describing it. Those two don’t agree on much. They’re great friends, but I think they’d be quite lively. I think that dynamic of Walsh and McCoy. I say Walsh and McCoy… it’ll probably be Walsh v McCoy, and I’d love to tap into that. Thursday – the golden hour – that will go down as one of the great hours of sport” “I think this festival was unique in that there was one massive highlight on the
That would be a little bit like the combination I worked with before, Neville and Carragher, who saw eye-to-eye, but my goodness, they went head-to- head, and I would be the one chucking in the odd little grenade. I think I’d have to do that with those two, so yeah, that’s potentially very exciting. That’s a definite possibility, but we’ve got a pretty strong team already, so we’ll see.” He doesn’t shy away from controversy, and the subject of horse welfare has garnered its fair share of news headlines in recent times. It’s an issue Ed has strong views on. “We have the best welfare provision in the world. It’s very much at the forefront of what people do. A lot of it goes on in the background, but it’s very important for us to show it on TV as well. “For me, the grooms are the unsung heroes; without them, there would be no racing. The BHA [British Horseracing Authority] does a great job with welfare, and we can’t let up on it, but at the moment, we are the absolute standard bearers for world racing on welfare. No stone will be left unturned both in terms of welfare for jockeys and
interview | ed chamberlin
horses, and long may we lead the way.” He believes that amateur races like the
Foxhunters have “a big role to play” at The Festival. “Seeing Willie Mullins’ entourage arriving in these massive lorries, and then mum and dad driving their son or daughter in a tiny one-horse box to Cheltenham to run in the Foxhunters. That is what the Corinthian spirit is and what sport is all about. People will watch at home and think ‘That could be me’, which is very powerful. So that amateur spirit, I’d be loath to lose it, but again, common sense needs to be used.” He admits that he’s always thinking ahead and “as soon as the Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup 2019 finished, I was already thinking about next year. There are all sorts of different things I’d like to do, but I think the most important thing for us is to cover the stories well and get the story right. The scriptwriters at Cheltenham played a blinder in 2019, and I’m sure there’ll be a good scriptwriter for 2020.”
The ITV Racing team aren’t adverse to a bit of banter and Ed is happy to oblige when asked to dish the dirt. So come on Ed, who is… The vainest? “Chris Hughes has taken that to a different level. Yeah, he’s got the same colour skin as Matt Chapman. Yeah, they either spend a lot of time in the sun, or use other bits of help. Who’s the vainest? Chris Hughes would probably win that award, but he doesn’t half pull it off. He looks good on camera. He really does. The least vain would be Richard Hoiles. He couldn’t give a monkey’s, I love that about him.” The most opinionated? “Matt Chapman. My mother wouldn’t necessarily agree with everything he says, but she watches him. That’s a very important thing in television. Matt’s clever, he knows what he’s doing. He’s a very, very important part of what we do. He has an opinion and I encourage that because it would be very bland if we all agreed about everything.” “I’ve had car pooling with most of them. Johnny Murtagh is great fun to share a car with because he sings like mad. We’ve done Carpool Karaoke with Johnny. Chapman and [Oli] Bell are dreadful drivers. Jason Weaver never stops talking but makes you cry laughing. If you’re driving, you have to pull over sometimes. But I think I’d go for Sir Anthony McCoy. His driving is terrible, his singing voice is awful. The worry with Sir Anthony is he thinks he’s The Killers’ lead singer. He thinks he’s really good, and I keep telling him it’s awful, flat, monotone, and makes even the shortest journey seem long. So I think I’m afraid I’d least like to be in a car with Sir Anthony.” The sharpest wit? “Luke Harvey is very, very funny and great fun. He always makes me laugh, but Jason Weaver would be the sharpest. You can’t miss a trick with him, and he’s a menace as well. He’s like the Jamie Carragher of the dressing room. You can’t get away with anything with Weaver. He has made The one you’d least like to share a long car journey with? me cry laughing. Imagine when I’m talking down the camera and I’ve got Weaver to my right dissolving with laughter. It can be quite hard.” The most knowledgeable? “Richard Hoiles, by a distance. You have no idea how unselfish and what a team player he is. I chat to him umpteen times during the week. Then before every meeting, we’ll have breakfast. If he sometimes misses that because he’s gone on The Opening Show, or he’s got a family commitment, I am bereft and lost without running through every single race with him, little stories about horses, nuggets, stats, facts. He will help me with anything. He is an absolute gem, and I think it’s fair to say I couldn’t survive without him.”
1 0 - 1 3 MA R C H 2 0 2 0 CHELTENHAM
“This was taken on the gallops on the Monday before The Festival TM presented by Magners, which was pretty much the only morning we got nice weather!”
“On the Wednesday morning we were lucky to see Tiger Roll jump one of the cross country fences. He’s a special little horse having since gone on to win the Randox Health Grand National for a second time so this was a bit of a treat.”
A t just 22-years-old, and life-long lover of racing, it was perhaps inevitable that she’d pursue a career in the equine industry, yet Francesca says she never studied photography and is completely self taught. “I ‘borrowed’ my dad’s camera when I was 12 and he never got it back,” she explains. At 17, she was taken on by Francesca Altoft admits she’s living her “dream job” as a professional Racing Photographer. As a horse-mad child
FRANCESCA ALTOFT reveals what it’s like to be Cheltenham’s Official Racing Photographer and shares her favourite photographs
cheltenham people | racing photographer
Gavin James, Cheltenham’s then Official Photographer. “I worked for him for three years before he retired; now I’m Official Photographer at Cheltenham, Huntingdon, Newbury and Royal Windsor. I’m very lucky that my job takes me to most of the big meetings during the Jump and Flat seasons.” Not surprisingly, Cheltenham Festival is the highlight of her year. “The atmosphere is second to none, and I love getting to know the horses as you learn their personalities before they race. It’s a hard week though. I will usually be up at around 5.30am to be at the course for 7am and I can walk up to nine miles a day. On average, I take 3,000 photos a
a big shock to the system.” Francesca is a huge admirer of other professional photographers, in particular Edward Whitaker, who she describes as “the master of the trade. All the photographers get on well though. I think it’s important to always take advice and never stop learning, but at the same time be yourself because only you see the world through your eyes.” Being nominated for 2018 Horserace Writers and Photographers Association Photographer of the Year is one of her career highlights so far. Her dream? To “hopefully win. Whether this is this year or not I don’t know, but it would be a huge thing if I can make it happen.”
day, of which I will keep about 300. You don’t really get to appreciate it until it’s over, but it’s a privilege to call it work.” She admits there’s no daily routine. “I’m not really a morning person, so I leave it as late as I can get away with, but I aim to find as much time to get work done as I can before racing starts. People underestimate the workload of a photographer. You have to be very dedicated as you can be working in freezing cold and wet conditions, or the complete opposite. Taking the photos is only a very small part of the job, there’s a lot of work that people don’t see. You also need to be very good at talking to people. I used to be very shy, so this was
“This is probably the photo that I’m most proud of across the whole of last season at Cheltenham. It’s was taken on the morning of the Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup and happens to be that afternoon’s Gold Cup winners Al Boum Photo and Paul Townend! It’s quite special to be able to get so close to the horses that often go on to win big races while they are relaxed in the mornings. Al Boum Photo has such lovely eyes and certainly knew the cameras were on him that morning.”
To view more of Francesca’s
photos or to make a purchase please visit racedayphotos.co.uk
“This is a completely unposed photo of David Mullins and a horse called Annamix. When the Willie Mullins trained horses have worked in the morning they all stop for a pick of grass and this was one of those lovely moments that happened right in front of me, and turning it black and white made the photo come to life.”
“Ballycasey is a bit of a legend and he absolutely knows it! He stood as still as a statue having his photo taken before the cross country race at the December meeting. The winter light fell just right on him and, being a grey, he looks stunning.”
Readers’ questions answered, hot tips, and why on earth
is this magazine called Kalendar? AWORD IN OUR EAR
GUIDE TO BETTING You asked for a “novices guide to betting” so here’s some handy info. Form When looking at a horse’s previous racing form, good points to look out for are: • If the horse has won before. • If the horse has previously run well over the same distance. Or, if they are entered in a race over a different distance that may be because previous runs were over too long, or short. • Has the horse been beaten by a horse who is a high-class performer? Take Supasundae, for example. He was second to Apples Jade twice in the 2018/19 season, but when she was out of the picture in the Betway Aintree Hurdle, (Grade One) he won. Pre-Parade ring Visiting the Pre-Parade Ring gives a great opportunity to see what the horses look like in the flesh, without their tack on. Seeing horses relaxed and not sweating is a good sign. Weight Look back at past performances over similar tracks, distances and runnings against similarly rated horses. Look at what weight the horse was carrying and how it performed.
The course Look for which trainers do well at certain courses and in particular races. Enda Bolger has a great record at The Cheltenham Festival in two particular races; he has trained the winner of five Glenfarclas Cross Country Chases and three St James’s Place Foxhunters.
Looking for a course and distance winning horse is a good method to follow, they tend to run well. Tiger Roll has won four times at Cheltenham, proving he performs well around the course. The pace of the race The pace of a race has an influence on its
kalendar | reader feedback
TRAINERS’ HOT TIPS Readers wanted to see more trainers’ tips on which horses to keep an eye on in the upcoming season. We asked Alan King, trainer of Sceau Royal, Smad Place, Yanworth and 2008 Champion Hurdle winner Katchit. reference to the first racing “Kalendar” (spelt with a K), which was produced by The Jockey Club in April 1752 by Alan King’s top tips THE GLANCING QUEEN A top bumper mare last season, winning at Aintree in April. Will now start novice hurdling and is an exciting prospect. EWARDSTONE Runner-up in all three bumpers but seemed to meet a decent winner on each occasion. He has schooled well and will be sent novice hurdling in the autumn. DEYRANN DE CARJAC He jumped very well when winning on his chasing debut at Cartmel. I feel he could really progress over fences this winter over 2 ½ miles plus. HEART OF A LION He worked really well prior to winning his bumper at Southwell recently. He will now have a late summer holiday but could be a high class bumper horse this winter. result. If you know there isn’t going to be a lot of pace in the race, then a horse who likes bowling along in front might be a good selection. OUT AND ABOUT WITH THE COTSWOLD GENTLEMAN “The one thing I’d change in Kalendar would be to include a profile of local accommodation with ratings on food and drink.” This was a comment posted time and time again in our last reader survey. So we’ve teamed up with The Cotswold Gentleman who has provided details on the surrounding area: where to stay, where to eat and what to see and do. Head to page 18-19 for more details. WHAT’S IN A NAME? One of the questions we get asked is: why is the magazine called Kalendar ? The answer is steeped in racing history. The name Kalendar is in
Saphir Du Rheu enjoying his new career
John Pond. It gave notice that there would be a race at Newmarket for ‘horses the Property of the Noblemen and Gentlemen belonging to The Jockey Club’. WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Leslie Southern wanted to know what trainers, jockeys and horses are doing now they are retired from racing. (including two Gold Cups), winner of Cleeve Hurdle (Grade 2) and second in the Stayers’ Hurdle (Grade 1). Saphir Du Rheu was a successful steeplechaser, trained by Paul Nicholls. After being retired from racing in 2018 he had a change of career and is now successfully competing in British Eventing competitions with his new owner Charlotte Alexander. He demonstrated his eventing ability when producing a clear in the cross-country around Barbury International Horse Trials in June. Charlotte said: “I really do think this is an incredible achievement. He has only been doing this for three months and is being ridden by an amateur. Most of the horses competing have been ridden and produced by professionals!” Alongside eventing “Saphy” regularly competes in team chasing competitions. Brendan Powell Snr After retiring from the saddle in 2000, Grand National winning jockey Brendan Powell started a career as a trainer in Saphir Du Rheu Cheltenham record: Seven runs
Upper Lambourn. As a trainer he recorded almost 650 victories before retiring in April 2019. Brendan has now joined Joseph O’Brien Racing as Assistant Trainer. Ollie McPhail Formally a Jump jockey, who rode over 130 winners, Ollie McPhail is now programme manager for Racing to School, a charity which provides free educational activities for young people at racecourses, studs and trainers yards around the UK. The charity is aiming to run a record 370 events this year that will support around 14,000 young people. In 2018 Ollie received The McCoy’s Outstanding Contribution Award.
Arbiter of style, The Cotswolds Gentleman shares a local’s guide to the very best of Cheltenham and the surrounding area F rom Chipping Campden in the north to Bath in the south, the Cotswolds more characterful country pubs that you can shake a stick at, endless family activities and attractions and a wealth of fine hotels, restaurants and bars. So why not turn your day at the races into a weekend in the Cotswolds? Where to stay Broadway is one of the prettiest villages in the Cotswolds and a great base from where to explore. At the heart of its picturesque OUT AND ABOUT and a beautiful dining room. If being at one with nature is more your thing, then nestled into the hillside, overlooking Broadway, are the splendid Treehouses and Huts at The Fish Hotel. Complete with underfloor heating and heated outdoor baths and hot tubs, these are a spectacular way to spend a weekend in the countryside.
is a magical Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty covering 800 square miles of rolling landscape, dotted with charming honey-tinged villages and market towns across five counties. There’s an abundance of rich history,
For those who want to stay close to the action, Ellenborough Park is perfectly situated between Cheltenham Racecourse and the highest point in the Cotswolds, Cleeve Hill, which forms a stunning natural amphitheatre around Prestbury
high street lies the magnificent Lygon Arms, boasting 86 stylish rooms, a pool with a retracting roof (in warmer months!)
cheltenham | off course
Coco is one of the town’s hidden gems, bringing a little bit of Paris to a corner on Cambury Place. It’s intimate (you will need to book) with a lovely atmosphere and outstanding food. For some of the UK’s finest Asian cuisine, the East India Cafe offers delicious Anglo-Indian flavours on their a la carte and tasting menus, while Koj, launched by Masterchef finalist Andrew Kojima in 2017, creates superb authentic Japanese grazing plates in their restaurant on Regent Street. Don’t be fooled in thinking that all the best restaurants are in Cheltenham, as there are many other fine eateries dotted around the Cotswolds. Michael’s Mediterranean feels like a little corner of Cyprus in the heart of Chipping Campden and is very much worth a visit, as is the stylish new Back Garden Restaurant at Dormy House Hotel and The Painswick, where you can also stay. The finest food and drink can be found in many of the excellent pubs that adorn the Cotswolds. The Hare at Milton, The Churchill Arms at Paxford, The Bell at Langford, The Potting Shed at Crudwell and The Wheatsheaf in Northleach are all worth a visit. What to see and do Cheltenham’s Wilson Gallery and Holst Museum celebrate two of the town’s most famous sons, natural historian and explorer Edward Wilson, who died on return from the South Pole, and composer of The Planets, Gustav Holst. A bronze statue of the latter can be found in the Imperial Gardens. Pittville Pump Room is the jewel in Cheltenham’s Regency crown.
Another architectural masterpiece is the magnificent Everyman Theatre, which always impresses with a fantastic programme of shows. If retail therapy is up your street, Cheltenham is recognised as a key shopping destination in the UK. The beautiful tree-lined Promenade was recently voted one of the top five shopping streets in the UK by Google. In October 2018, John Lewis & Partners opened a flagship store on the high street, complete with a Personal Shopping service, Beauty Blow Dry Bar and more than 1,000 brands over two floors. If you want to travel further afield, a whole day could be spent exploring many of the villages, towns and notable landmarks. A visit to the breathtaking Blenheim Palace is an unforgettable experience for all ages, Adam Henson’s Cotswold Farm Park and the Cotswold Wildlife Park are perfect for those of you with animal-loving children in tow, while Daylesford is one the most iconic farm shops in the UK. If that’s not enough then a tour of the splendid Cotswolds Distillery, and tasting their range of outstanding spirits, is a brilliant experience. There’s so much more to discover while the races are on. Now is the perfect time to start planning your weekend away.
The Lygon Arms
Park. Slip on a pair of Dubarry’s from the boot room and enjoy magnificent views of the racecourse and beyond. Equally as close is No.38 The Park, an elegant 13-bedroom Georgian townhouse which is home to Prithvi, one of Cheltenham’s favourite Indian restaurants. In the town centre, The House at No.131 is the latest addition to The Lucky Onion’s portfolio and the place to be during the races. With eight individually designed bedrooms, stunning interiors and plenty of space to relax, you can head downstairs to Gin & Juice and party into the early hours. independent restaurants, it’s easy to see why Cheltenham is a popular foodie destination. A day at the races should always start with a good breakfast. The Ivy Brasserie offers a classic menu in stunning surroundings. For a truly memorable dining experience look no further than the 3AA Rosette-awarded Lumière Restaurant that continues to exceed people’s expectations with its wonderful menus and service. The charming Petit Where to eat With numerous award-winning
The Cotswolds Gentleman is a renowned lifestyle blogger and
go-to guide for all things relating to Cheltenham and the surrounding area. thecotswoldsgentleman.co.uk
As big name jockeys like RUBY WALSH and NOEL FEHILY settle into retirement, it’s time to hail the new guard CHANGING HANDS
jockeys | changing hands
Opposite page: Bryony Frost and her father Jimmy Frost Below: Rachael Blackmore and Sir Anthony McCoy
rom Sir Anthony McCoy and Ruby Walsh to Harry Cobden and Bryony Frost, racing is blessed with sporting
legends and household names aplenty, who have all brought their passion and talents to the track. Alongside such strength and depth, The Festival ™ presented by Magners 2019 saw a changing of the guard as new names were thrown into the Winners’ Enclosure, highlighting a fresh era of racing talent. As Prestbury Park was catching its breath after one of the most emotional 45 minutes that Cheltenham had ever experienced on Day Three of The Festival, Noel Fehily was riding his last ever Festival winner. It had been touch and go whether he would actually ride at The Festival at all after having his appendix removed in January, and upon passing the finishing post, he immediately announced he was retiring after a career that spanned 21 years and included over 1,300 winners. “It’s a young person’s game, you can’t go on forever,” he admitted. This was evident again on May 1st 2019 when after riding Kemboy to victory in the Punchestown Gold Cup, Cheltenham legend and multiple Irish Champion Jockey, Ruby Walsh, arguably the finest rider that Jump racing has ever seen, called time on his glittering career. With a record 59 winners at The Festival, and taking home the leading Festival jockey award 11 times between 2004 and 2017, Ruby will be remembered for his alliance with some of the most gifted horses of a generation, including Kauto Star, Big Buck’s, Master Minded, Quevega, Hurricane Fly, Annie Power and Faugheen, to name but a few. These are big boots to fill and there is an abundance of riders ready to fill them. The explosion of noise that roared alongside Bryony Frost and Frodon in the 2019 Ryanair Chase will live long in the memory of every sports fan. It was Frost’s second Festival victory, after winning the St James’s Place Foxhunter Chase as an amateur in 2017 on Pacha Du Polder, and she entered the history books as the first Grade One Festival
winner over fences/hurdles for a female jockey. Affectionately known by her first name in the racing world, the public had found their new hero. Bryony or ‘B’ as she prefers to be known, is the daughter of Grand National winning jockey Jimmy Frost and has never considered a life doing anything but becoming a professional jockey. Often considered a flagbearer for female jockeys in British racing, Bryony is very quickly proving that she is a force to be reckoned with after claiming the Conditional Jockeys Championship in the 2018/19 season. As The Festival was celebrating the record-breaking success of Bryony, the next day Irish sensation, Rachael Blackmore, repeated the Grade One feat aboard Minella Indo in the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle, following up her victory on Day One in the Close Brothers Novices’ Handicap Chase on A Plus Tard. Her success hasn’t happened overnight and would have come as no surprise to the Irish horse racing community, who consider her a superstar for her achievements in the saddle. She made history as the first woman to win the Irish Conditional Riders Championship in 2017 and, with 90 winners, came runner-up in the 2018/19 Jockeys’ Championship behind Paul Townend. Rachael has built up a strong relationship with top Irish trainer Henry De Bromhead, as well as being high among the top jockeys used by Gigginstown House Stud for their battalion of horses. Unlike Bryony, Rachael was not born into the racing world. The middle one of three
jockeys | changing hands
Left: Jonjo O’Neill Jr
him, but I won anyway so that’s the main thing.” A driven, determined and clearly extremely talented jockey, Rachael’s 2018/19 season has been one she won’t be forgetting, and for many she is a talent that looks set to be around for many years to come. The 2019 Cheltenham Festival was packed full of drama, high emotion and young jockeys making a huge impact on Jump racing’s biggest stage, and was bookended with victories for Ruby on Klassical Dream, his only winner of the week, and Jonjo O’Neill Jr aboard Early Doors for Joseph O’Brien. This was simply coincidental but yet another small sign that the baton was being passed to the younger generation. With the famous O’Neill surname, Jonjo Jr has a lot to live up to. However, the early part of his career was plagued by injury, as he broke a hand while schooling over in France, and endured eight months on the sidelines after a freak L5 vertebrae break in the indoor school at Jackdaws Castle. He eventually returned to the saddle in October 2018 and hasn’t looked back, many in the sport
children of a County Tipperary dairy farmer and teacher. Rachael has an older brother who’s a graphic designer and younger sister who’s a law graduate. Rachael initially planned to become a vet so studied science, then equine science and did a business course before, at the age of 26, making the decision to concentrate on life as a jockey. A notoriously shy but likeable Rachael said: “People say to me now ‘your dreams are coming true,’ but I could never even have dreamt of being a professional jockey – it was so far from what I thought I could have ever achieved.” Her appetite grew when she first took part in a pony race, and in a strange twist of fate beat a young Paul Townend in a close finish. “That was a big highlight for me as you can imagine,” said Rachael. “It’s quite funny watching the video back because he was so polished already – he was 12 or 13, and looked like he was going to be a Champion Jockey of the future, and I just look horrendous beside
believing that he has the pedigree to become Champion Jockey in the not too distant future. There are some fine young jockeys coming out of Wales. Notably Sean and James Bowen, who have both enjoyed lots of success in the last few years, and Connor Brace who, in April, was hand-picked by Nicky Henderson to claim 7lbs on Verdana Blue in the Scottish Champion Hurdle, which he won comfortably with a confident performance way beyond his years. The sport is benefitting from the quality of pony racing, and never before have we had a pool of talent so deep. It’s a hugely exciting time for Jump racing, and the 2019/20 season is sure to throw a number of new names into the midst. The list of future stars is endless, but our one to watch for the next season is local lad Jonjo O’Neill Jr, who we are sure to be seeing much more of in the Winners’ Enclosure at the Home of Jump Racing.
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Syndicates have become such an important part of the racing industry and finding the right syndicate is no easy thing. We have a successful track record and with our fifth syndicate just launched, now is your chance to become an owner with Venetia Williams. With two horses, a 6yo gelding who has already won over 60,000 Euros in France, and an unraced 4yo gelding by Fame And Glory, we have the perfect combination for this autumn – a proven chaser and an exciting youngster.
We know that owners like having two horses, and with only 12 owners in this new syndicate you will feel part of the family. We are friendly and welcoming, and offer many opportunities for owners to meet each other at stable visits, race meetings and other social activities based around the racing industry. Our syndicates run for an initial two year period with all fees covered until September 2021. Join us now and enjoy all the fun and excitement that racehorse ownership has to offer.
Top Picture: Burrows Park (Syndicate III) 3 time winner last season and Aintree & Cheltenham Festivals runner.
Please call Venetia or Christina for more information.
VENETIA WILLIAMS • ARAMSTONE • KINGS CAPLE • HEREFORDSHIRE • HR1 4TU T: 01432 840646 M: 07799 668439 E: email@example.com www.venetiawilliams.com
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FOR THE THRILL OF IT
Famed for the Roar, lauded for its stars – both equine and human – and hailed by the Racing Post as the Greatest Racecourse in the World, Cheltenham is getting ready to welcome over 470,000 racegoers as the new season awaits. Building towards aMarch crescendo, soon all eyes will turn to the magnificent
amphitheatre nestling in the arms of Cleeve Hill. Read on as we reflect on the 2018/19 season, while also looking ahead to upcoming fixtures, events and everything else going on at the Home of Jump Racing, brought to you by The Jockey Club.
The wait is finally over. As the Home of Jump Racing comes alive once more, The Showcase marks the start of another action-packed season
AS THE DAYS get shorter and the crisp mornings return, it can only mean one thing – Cheltenham is back. The thundering of hooves and cheers from the crowd will return to Cheltenham’s world class sporting venue on 25th and 26th October to kick-start another season of extraordinary moments. The buzz around the course as the gates open for the first meeting of the season is like no other day, with familiar faces bumping into one another and the local community heading back to their racing roots. Cheltenham regulars travel from afar to return to the one place they’ve missed all summer as racing knuckles down and we prepare for what lies ahead. The Showcase marks a key moment in many sports fans’ calendars. From
Willie Mullins inducted into the Hall of Fame, seen here collecting one of his many prizes with Ruby Walsh
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