TDN Weekend

December 2016

TDN Weekend December 2016 Issue 9

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 40 of 67

"Training good horses is wonderful. But trying to win races with bad ones is another story." lovely owner once, with a very slow horse, a local guy who wanted to have a runner at Goodwood. I found a 2m 3f handicap, the horse had 7st 9lbs, all the owner's pals were going to be there. So I said to Willie Carson: 'For God's sake don't try to win on this because if you do, you'll finish last. Just ride a race, give him a chance, and try to beat three or four. And when you come in, don't tell me he's no effing good. I know that, and the owner probably does too. Just say something nice to the owner, and we'll have a chat later in the weighing room. So Wil- lie does a great job, beats three or four, job done. And he comes into Excuses' Corner, where every- one's busy unsaddling, gets off, looks at the owner, smiles, and says: 'You know sir, your horse is a lovely colour.'" Colour, certainly, has never been wanting in Har- wood's life, though this is a time of year when the grass can still seem greener on the Turf. "I used to love going to the sales, especially Keeneland," he says. "Trying to find yearlings was a great passion. I haven't been to a yearling sale for three years now. I haven't made the time, I suppose. But I'm sure one day I'll be back. Goodwood is always marked off in the diary, naturally – especially if Amanda has any runners. It's a lovely meeting, it's local, and I'll see a lot of friends there. And of course I'll see a lot of customers, too!" Thinking back to the days when the racecourse was a far more intense theatre of operation, he ca- sually dredges up a conversation that might have altered everything. "There was a time when I did think about selling up the motor business," he says. "But my accountant at the time said: 'If you do that, what are you going to do with the money? You'll probably only go and spend it. Businesses are hard to develop. Why don't you keep going with it – and one day, perhaps, you might have reason to be glad you did so.'" A pause, and a quiet chuckle. "That has turned out to be pretty good advice." 41

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of TDN Weekend - December 2016