The high cost of having a horse in training for racing is being shared more and more these days, by groups of people who come together to form a syndicate ownership, either leasing a horse from a trainer or purchasing it outright.
This was never more evident than at Worcester last week when five of the 7 winning horses were owned by syndicates, including Highclare Thoroughbred Racing, Foxtrot Racing, Arion Racing Club, Case Racing Partnership and Olly Murphy Racing Club.
In my view, it is a win/win situation because not only is the burden of cost divided between a number of people, but when the horse wins, there is always a tremendous party atmosphere after the race with the elated owners celebrating and sharing their success. Most racing yards now offer this kind of ownership and there is much less financial risk than owning a horse solo.
Foxtrot Racing own the locally trained Caid Du Lin, winner of the novice chase last week. Based at Claines with Richard Newland, the 6-year old has been with Newland since he came over from France in January 2017. Following 203 days off the track, the race at Worcester last week was his chasing debut.
HRH, The Princess Royal visited Pitchcroft for the 300th Anniversary raceday in July, but was not present last week when her homebred mare, Chequered View ran her hurdle debut for trainer, Martin Keighley.
Ridden by Richard Johnson, the mare ran a respectable race into third and is now qualified for the £30,000 7bets4free.com Fixed Brush Hurdle Series final at Worcester on 24th October.
Johnson is warming up for the winter rides and with 15 winners in the last 14 days, it promises to be quite some winter, providing he remains injury free.
Having won the opener for the in-form Phillip Hobbs aboard Contented, Johnson was successful for Gordon Elliott in the novice hurdle on Present in Court, bringing his tally to 18 wins from 32 rides this season for the County Meath trainer.
Present in Court was a winning pointer at Bangor in March 2017 and has since run 3 times at Downpatrick for Elliott, winning twice and finishing 2nd on the other occasion.
Recent Worcester juvenile winner, Chief Justice was sent by owners, Cheveley Park Stud to be trained by Elliott earlier this month and followed up his Pitchcroft win with further success in a juvenile hurdle at Listowel last week, giving his owners their first victory in Ireland.
Another winner on that same Worcester card, Shantou Village trained by Neil Mulholland ran a good race in the 200,000 Euro Grade A, Kerry National handicap chase, also at Listowel last week, finishing 5th, just 5 lengths behind the winner, Snow Falcon.
The racing action continues at Pitchcroft today, with the annual Locals Day, when in addition to the excitement on the track there will be local food and drink stands showcasing their produce in the marquee by the parade ring. Gates open at 12.20pm.