Goodwood's racehorse owners ready to race again

The Goodwood Racehorse Owners Group goes from strength to strength 22 years after being formed.

Tuesday, 15th November 2016, 2:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 6:05 pm
GROG members celebrate one of Goodwood Zodiac's wins

Started by the Duke of Richmond with the idea of giving racegoers at Goodwood the opportunity to participate as owners, the syndicates have enjoyed great success with 14 of their 20 horses having won races.

Their embroidered red and yellow silks are now a familiar sight on England’s racecourses.

Goodwood offered the 24th scheme to existing members of GROG and new applicants in the summer and the scheme is now fully subscribed.

The latest purchase is a colt by Showcasing out of the mare Polly Floyer. He is described as an attractive, well made colt who should be precocious at two years and hopefully train on at three.

Each year members begin the season with optimism that another young horse will add to the list of successes. Perhaps none will realise the financial return of Goodwood Mirage - bought for the group for 28,000 Guineas and sold for

380,000 Guineas - but each becomes a favourite to one member or another, irrespective of their ability.

Throughout the year members are invited to stable visits to watch their horses at early-morning exercise and enjoy breakfast in the open air. There is also a full diary of social events, beginning each year with a privileged party at Goodwood House.

The group have also travelled overseas to enjoy racing from destinations including Hong Kong, Cape Town, Dubai and India – or Switzerland and Berlin closer to home.

This year Goodwood Zodiac won as a three-year-old at both Windsor and Epsom for his owners. Trained by William Knight at Angmering, the horse also won twice as a two-year-old. He cost 42,000 Guineas as a yearling and sold for 70,000 Guineas having won more than £30,000 in prize money, thus making the 22nd scheme another hugely successful one for GROG.

The group also have a two-year-old in training with Richard Hughes named Goodwood Crusader. He ran five times for his owners this season finishing placed three times. They are hopeful of a strong campaign with him on the all-weather next spring.

Gail Brown, racing manager of GROG, said: “Each year we aim to provide our members with plenty of racing and a wide variety of social events. Of course we cannot predict how good their horse might be, but our statistics are way ahead of the game and we will be doing our best to keep it that way.”

Readers interested in GROG can contact Goodwood Racecourse on 01243 755029 with a new syndicate due to be launched in May 2017. A waiting list is in operation.

* The tragedy to stem from this season is the awful injury sustained in a fall at Kempton by Freddy Tylicki, who twice rode Goodwood Zodiac to victory before a thrilling second at Epsom on Derby Day.

Tylicki has been left paralysed from the waist down and GROG, and Goodwood racecourse, are encouraging members to support the IJF fund-raising campaign for the rider and his family.

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