Where Are They Now?

Keeping track of Micky’s horses in their new careers….

Even when horses aren’t in training with us any more, we still love to know how they’re getting on! Although it’s not strictly a part of our job, we’re all extremely passionate about the rehoming, retraining and rehabilitation of ex-racehorses – we help out wherever we can – and we’re always keen to follow the progress of our horses who have moved to other trainers, whether they continue to run under Rules or in point-to-points.

This page is devoted to news and updates about Micky’s ex-inmates; if you have any news that you’d like to add, we’d love to hear from you!

Motafarred’s hunting debut!

Tuesday 21st February 2017

16830340_1837783459771891_1762022484_n (2)Motafarred ran in the Group 1 Ascot Gold Cup in his 2006 heyday and was rated as high as 93 during a successful Flat career, but not surprisingly he’s more at home taking things at a rather more leisurely pace these days and we’re really pleased to report that the son of Machiavellian, now a spritely fifteen years young, thoroughly enjoyed his first day out hunting at the weekend.

Moto, now in the care of our stable lad Tim Jones, went out with the Bedale hunt on Saturday and had a ball, jumping everything in his path, clearly his four runs for us over hurdles at Wetherby weren’t a complete waste of time! 

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Tallula and Sarah set for RoR Nationals after Blair Castle success

Monday 29th August 2016

We’ve got some brilliant news about one of our former inmates, Tallula, who’s been in action at the prestigious Blair Castle International Horse Trials at Blair Atholl, in the Scottish Highlands, this weekend.

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Sarah and her mum Janice with the amazing Tallula!

Tallula, who was unplaced in eight races on the Flat in 2011 and 2012, has taken to showing like the proverbial duck to water in the care of her devoted owner and rider, Sarah Spence.

Sarah and Tallula were competing at Blair for the third successive year, having been reserve Ex-Racers Club Ridden Scottish champions in 2014 and champions in the same class twelve months ago. This weekend, though, our favourite partnership had their sights set on not one, but two RoR (Retraining of Racehorses) open classes….and won them both!

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Sarah and Tallula’s (above) success in the RoR Tattersalls Scottish Show Series qualifier means that they can enter the championship final at next year’s Royal Highland Show, along with runner up Mister Carter and third placed Alefou D’Airy.

14102645_1325534390804871_1477346716479945920_n (2)And their win in the brand new RoR/TARRA (Thoroughbred And Retired Racehorse Association) ridden class qualifies them for the 2017 RoR National Championship Show at Aintree, with the winner and runner up in that class going through to the Elite Series Final later in the show.

The only unfortunate thing is that the National Championships are held on the same weekend as Blair, which means that Sarah and Tallula won’t be able to compete at their favourite venue next year, but these are really exciting times for the pair and we’re immensely proud that one of our ex racehorses will be involved at Aintree next August!

“She’s having a well deserved holiday for the next couple of weeks!” says nineteen year old Sarah, who’s from Dundee. “I’m totally over the moon with her, she is something else.

“I love Blair so much but we’ll just have to sacrifice it next year….how can I not go to the national championships?!”

We already can’t wait for next August. Sarah and Tallula are one massive success story and a shining example of what RoR is all about.

Catching up with Typhon!

Tuesday 12th July 2016

It was great to get a recent update about dual purpose Proud Citizen gelding Typhon, who raced ten times in the colours of Darrel Lees between December 2014 and October last year.


13639548_10208064882633838_1001328701_oA dual winner at three for David Lanigan, we bought Typhon (above) for £12,000 at the Doncaster sales in November 2014 and he fulfilled a lifelong ambition for his proud owner when he carried Darrel’s shiny new dark blue and lilac silks in a maiden hurdle at Catterick the following month.

Typhon went on to win on his handicap hurdle debut at Sedgefield and looked to have a real future ahead of him over timber, but he broke a blood vessel on his next start on the Flat at Pontefract and despite a falling handicap mark he couldn’t put that nasty experience behind him and we took the difficult decision to retire him after he was pulled up on his return from a little break nine13647167_10208276733489125_741401314_o months ago.

Happily Darrel has been able to keep Typhon and the six year old is thoroughly enjoying his retirement across the Pennines in Shaw, near Darrel’s home in Oldham. Darrel now has another horse, Longueville Flier, in training with us, in partnership with his good friend Danny Trainer and as you can see, Danny and Gemma’s daughter Izzy is keeping Typhon busy in his paddock, albeit at a slightly slower pace than when he was a racehorse!

It’s great to see Typhon looking so happy in his new surroundings and we hope he has a long and extremely enjoyable retirement with Izzy as his new rider. 

Tim and Moto set for cross country debut

2nd June 2016

Fast ground loving Machiavellian gelding Motafarred ran in 40 races during two separate spells here at Oakwood, winning under Richard Quinn, Jamie Spencer and young apprentice Thomas O’Brien, but the fourteen year old chesnut is now ready to embark on a new career in the hands of our stable lad Tim Jones.

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13334589_1734878976729007_1969046704_oMotafarred, or “Moto” as he was known in the yard, ran his last race at Pontefract back in September 2011, he came back to Middleham after a brief spell with Tina Jackson in 2010 and was once rated as high as 93 on the Flat. We took him to Ascot three times during his career and he ran in the Group 1 Gold Cup in 2006 under Neil Callan, trailing home a distant eleventh to Yeats, and he also had four runs over timber at Wetherby, which will have stood him in good stead for his new job!

Tim and Moto are gearing up for their first cross country competition at Camp Hill on 26th June, our photos show them in action at a schooling day at Catterick Garrison Saddle Club at the weekend. As well as giving Motafarred a new focus in his later years it’s also fantastic experience for Tim, who recently made his pony racing debut and will be riding in more races later in the season.

Good luck to Tim and Moto, we will of course let you know how they get on!

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Tim and Motafarred with Gemma and Kierra on her pony, Willow

Chernik takes one for the Team

22nd March 2016

Now fifteen years old, the intrepid Chernik has already had a point to point career after racing, but the old boy, who won twice from 31 races in his eight years in training with us, still has plenty of life in his legs and he’s already well into his third career in a lesser known equine pursuit.

Team Chasing was first staged at Hickstead in 1974 as an “adult alternative” to fun events such as the pony club games, and the teams were made up of competitors from the various eventing disciplines. Having been staged annually at Hickstead’s Easter meeing for a number of years the sport’s popularity spread and team chases were held by hunts and alongside point to point fixtures, the chases are run over roughly two miles around a cross country type course consisting of about 30 standard obstacles and any number of “smaller alternatives” and each team consists of four horses and riders, with the time of the third horse past the post counting as the team’s time.


Chernik (above), or”Kevin” as he’s always been fondly known, is now in the care of Darren Watts, who rides for a team called the Cunning Stunts….

Anyway Chernik will be  representing the Cunning Stunts around the country in National Open league events this season and he and his rider had a prep race last week in the Bedale Hunt Ride, where they enjoyed themselves and finished an excellent fifth.

We hope to receive news of Chernik’s continuing exploits in his new venture as the season progresses and we’ll keep you posted right here, good luck to Kev and Darren and we hope they have loads of fun!

For more information on Team Chasing you can visit the British Team Chasing website.

Catching up with Kaizen Factor!

27th September 2015

Beautiful Azamour gelding Kaizen Factor came to us from Rod Millman’s in May 2014 and despite his bargain sale price of just £2,500, we hoped that he might have inherited some of his half brother Azmeel’s ability. Trained by John Gosden, Azmeel won two Group 3 races, the bet365 Classic Trial at Sandown and Chester’s Dee Stakes, back in 2010 before finishing down the field in the Derby won by Workforce, but sadly Kaizen Factor was to end his racing career without a single win although he did manage a third placed finish in an all weather handicap at Kempton in March 2014.

Kaizen Factor was trained here at Oakwood for the last four of his twelve races, finishing down the field in a trio of staying handicaps in the summer of 2014 before being pulled up in a juvenile hurdle on his jumps debut at Cartmel. We’re delighted to report, however, that he’s gone to a fantastic new home and is well on the way to a new career in eventing!


IMG_0016Kaizen Factor now lives with Fiona Merchie near Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire, and his regular rider is Fiona’s 14 year old son Hugo (above and right). Hugo liked him straight away and has spent loads of time teaching Kaizen Factor to move forward and hack out on his own, and since Easter they’ve been doing flat work and jumping on a weekly basis.

Last month Kaizen spent a week at the Bedale & West of Yore Pony Club camp at Thorpe Perrow, learning how to be a pony club horse and not a racehorse, and making plenty of new friends in the process, and he’s also had a cross country training day at Eleanor Mercer’s at Camp Hill, where he liked to have a good look at every fence before he jumped them! 

This winter Kaizen Factor will be going hunting with the York & Ainsty North Hunt and then hopefully he’ll be ready to tackle some hunter trails in the spring. Unfortunately for Hugo, Kaizen Factor is too big to go pony racing but a one day event might be on the cards if he can brush up his dressage.  

In the meantime he’s proving to be the perfect addition to the Merchies’ farm, they love him to bits and we’re over the moon that he’s found such a lovely home, we will of course keep you fully up to date on his progress!

Terenzium loving his retirement!

25th September 2015

12029097_10153184426563437_215692562_n(1)Terenzium was the first horse to carry the now familiar blue and yellow colours of the Maybe The Last Time racing club when Becky rode him in an amateur riders’ handicap at Musselburgh in May 2013, we won’t dwell on that particular ride for too long but it’s safe to say that our head girl has much happier memories of the first time she rode the Cape Cross gelding.

That race was at Hamilton in June 2011 when Terenzium held off the strong late challenge of Ritsi to give Becks her first ever winner under Rules, she’s had six more winners since then in a career interrupted by injury but Terenzium will always be the horse closest to Becks’ heart and we’re happy to report that after a short, unsuccessful flirt with point to pointing, the thirteen year old has found himself a lovely retirement home!

“Mr T” has moved across Yorkshire to the fringes of the North York Moors near Pickering where he lives with Elissa Cummings, who many of our owners and friends will know from the owners and trainers entrances at various local courses including Catterick, Wetherby and York, and her husband, Alan. 

Terenzium is now a companion to Elissa and Alan’s purebred Cleveland Bay, Bosun, and even though Bosun is over 18 hands, Terenzium is the boss and is always first to the gate at tea time! His new hobby is chasing away any deer who wander into his field and he’s already become a big favourite with the local walkers, as a public footpath passes through his paddock.

Elissa and Alan have years of experience with horses and we hear a rumour that one or both of them might make a surprise return to the saddle next summer for a happy hack on our former inmate!


As you can see from our pictures Terenzium (the one on the left) is very happy relaxing in the late summer sunshine and Becky couldn’t have found a better forever home for her special boy.  

Superstar Tallulah is the Scottish Champion!

15th September 2015

12006358_1067985576559755_5364710555934954122_n(1)We’re absolutely thrilled to report that Tallulah, who raced eight times for us back in 2011 and 2012, continues to thrive in her new eventing career with Sarah Spence up in Dundee and at the weekend Sarah and her six year old mare won their biggest prize yet at the prestigious Blair Castle Horse Trials in Perthshire.

There was plenty of added interest and excitement at Blair this year as the meeting also hosted the 2015 Longines FEI European Eventing Championships, the final opportunity for European nations to qualify for next year’s Olympic Games in Rio, and the Queen was amongst the spectators on Sunday as Germany’s Michael Jung won the individual title and led his country to the team gold, with Great Britain’s quartet of Nicola Wilson, Pippa Funnell, William Fox-Pitt and Izzy Taylor taking silver.

The real excitement however took place earlier on Sunday in the Tummel Arena as Sarah and Tallulah, who competes under her racing name Tallula, contested the Ex Racers Club Ridden Scottish Championship Final, having won their qualifier at Brechin Castle back in June. Tallulah was reserve champion in the same class twelve months ago but this year we’re delighted to say that they went one better and won it, Tallulah catching the judge’s eye with her fantastic paces and foot perfect performance.

“I never thought I’d have a horse like Tallulah, I’m so proud of what we’ve achieved”, says Sarah. “The judges said that she was beautiful, she has the most amazing paces and that she was foot perfect, and I even got a handshake from Clare Balding! It’s a briliant way to end the season and I’m already looking forward to Windsor next year!’

11217665_1068628346495478_7530342153835918521_nIt’s a massive achievement and just reward for the amazing hard work that Sarah has done with Tallulah, they really are the perfect partnership and hopefully this is just the start of their success story.

For the record Tallulah also competed over fences in the Novice Working Hunter class on Thursday, where she was one of only 16 of the 80 starters to have a clear round, and she had just three poles down in the highly competitive British Novice Championship qualifiying round on Friday.

2016 promises to be a really exciting year for our favourite eventing team as Sarah and Tallulah have already qualified for the Retrained Racehorse Challenge at Royal Windsor in May and the RoR Championship at the RBS Royal Highland Show in June. 

We’re really quite amazed and unbelievably proud that one of our former racehorses is now a champion in her new career and is clearly enjoying her life so much, and we’ll certainly be following Sarah and Tallulah to Windsor and Edinburgh next year to let you know how they get on.

In the meantime we’d all like to send our congratulations to Sarah and Tallulah on their brilliant results at Blair!

Prolific Meetings Man still going strong

13th September 2015

We have to give a mention to Meetings Man, the grey Footstepsinthesand gelding who quickly made up into a smart staying Flat handicapper and juvenile hurdler for us a few years back and who is still regularly visiting the winner’s enclosure at the age of eight!

Owned by Paul Snook, Meetings Man won three Flat races for us, including a Newmarket handicap under Kieren Fallon, and he also won his first two starts over hurdles at Sedgefield and Bangor. He was runner up in a Listed three year old hurdle at Wetherby and finished third to Crackentorp under Becks in the 2011 Queen Mother’s Cup at York.

He was claimed by the then rookie Berkshire based trainer and former international eventer Ali Stronge for £7,000 after running in a claimer at Catterick in June 2013 and has since proved a real flag bearer for his new yard, winning a further eight Flat races for Ali and his current owner Bettine Evans, most recently rallying really gamely to score over a mile and five furlongs at Bath last month in the hands of George Baker. He was also Ali’s first runner after her marriage to Sam Stronge last September and he gave the pair a perfect wedding present, winning at Yarmouth under Ryan Moore.


Meetings Man (left) wins under Cam Hardie at Sandown in July last year, one of his eight victories for Ali Stronge

Currently rated 74 on the Flat Meetings Man has been showing as much dash as ever lately, it looks like there will be more races in him yet and it’s great to see the old boy doing so well for his new connections!   

10986835_1015198581838455_1654610006086543224_n(1)Tallulah and Sarah clean up at Strathmore!

15th June 2015

It’s show season again and our favourite partnership, Sarah Spence and her six year old Tagula mare Tallulah, had an amazing day at the SDRC’s Strathmore Show at Brechin Castle in Scotland yesterday.

Tallulah and eighteen year old Sarah (pictured) have been building up a large collection of rosettes and they went home from Brechin with plenty more, starting with first place in the Retrained Racehorse Challenge, a major achievement in itself when you look at what that class involves! 

As well as show jumping, which is also judged on style and performance, each horse has to be shown individually and that consists of walking, trotting, cantering showing change of leg, extended canter (gallop), halt and stand and walk off on10395170_1003276806363966_3035142207729124480_n(1) long rein. There are also marks for the horse’s conformation, amount of retraining and suitability to be retrained. To come out on top in that class is a fantastic reflection on the work Sarah and trainer Lynne Ward have done with Tallulah and it also qualifies them for the final at the Royal Windsor Show in May 2016.

Sarah and Tallulah also went on to be placed second in the Tattersalls & RoR Thoroughbred Ridden Show Horse class, qualifying for the RoR championship at the 2016 Royal Highland Show in the process, they then won the ex-racers club class which means that they go through to the ex-racers Scottish Championships at Blair Castle in September and finally they picked up the David Wilson Quaich for the overall champion ex racehorse at the show!      

We’re over the moon for Sarah and Tallulah, we love hearing about their achievements and we wish them the very best of luck in all the shows that they’ve qualified for, they are a shining example of what can be done with a retrained racehorse and we will of course let you know how they get on!

Cross-country comeback for Spats Colombo

16th March 2015055(1)

As we’ve reported before, dual Flat winner Spats Colombo, who suffered a career-ending injury at Redcar towards the end of the 2013 season, has been undergoing a long period of recuperation and rehabilitation but we can now reveal that Spats is fighting fit and back in action!

Last Sunday (8th March) saw Spats, who is now a five year old, make the first public appearance of his second career when he completed the West of Yore cross country ride at Lightwater Valley near Ripon. The 10 mile route offered a large range of terrain, rivers to cross, good stretches of canter and some cross country jumps – a good all round test which he thoroughly enjoyed!!

IMG_2310(1)Last November, when Spats had completed his recuperation, our assistant trainer Gemma and Amanda Donkin, who rides out for us at weekends, put their heads together to form a plan for his future. They decided that he would go to Amanda’s yard where she could bring him into work gently and start his re-education, with the added bonus that Amanda’s friend and colleague Kathy Boyer, of KB Equine Therapy, would also be on site and be involved in the process. Luckily Spats’ leg has not given him a moment’s trouble and with Kathy’s treatments and the correct work, the scar tissue is decreasing and he is moving beautifully.

His first rosette may only be for a cross country ride, however, it is testament to the team’s dedication in giving Spats all the time and effort possible to ensure a successful recovery, recuperation and future. There will be many more rosettes to come.

Onwards and upwards!!!

Amanda takes horses for retraining and rehabilitation at her yard in North Stainley.


Spats (right) and friends at home in the paddock

Ingleby Hill flies the Team MH flag at the Horse of the Year Show!

10th October 201410306632_1508357012755532_7518201102802034626_n

Horse lovers from all over the country descended on Birmingham’s NEC at the weekend for the annual Horse of the Year show and we’re delighted to report that a former Oakwood inmate made a big impact in the showing ring!

Ingleby Hill raced six times for us in the colours of the Oakwood Racing Partnership back in 2007 and 2008, without success, but the ten year old Averti gelding was turned out in stunning condition to win Thursday’s Riding Horse class under Shelley Heywood, qualifying for the South Essex Insurance Brokers’ Search For A Star final in the process.

The final was won by Diamond Roulette, with Rotherwood Mr Pepys as reserve champion, but Shelley and Ingleby Hill (pictured) had a great time lining up on the final day of the show and they should have a big future ahead of them!

Happy Hatti makes the most of her Roman Holiday

14th September 201410696324_10204623058006028_2809753143842534770_n

One year ago last weekend, juvenile filly Hatti ran with great credit for us behind Remember in a hot nursery at York, and she marked the anniversary of that effort with a fantastic win at the Capannelle racecourse in Rome last Sunday. Ridden by Salvatore Sulas, Hatti saw off her seven rivals in the three year old fillies’ contest over nine furlongs, including previous Listed winner and odds-on favourite Donna Prassede, as she continued her impressive first season with trainer Devis Grilli.

They adore Hatti in Italy, just like we did when she was with us in Middleham, and we’re sure the little battler will continue to delight her new connections who will be eyeing Listed success for the Haatef filly before the season is out! 

Tallulah blooms at Blairblair_Castle_and_horses

31st August 2014

August Bank Holiday weekend saw Scotland’s premier equestrian event and we couldn’t wait to see how Sarah Spence and our ex-racemare Tallulah got on at the Blair Atholl International Horse Trials up in Perthshire!10484035_839683316056650_2990882314988193256_n(1)

Blair is a huge occasion in the eventing calendar and attracts top horses and riders – the main event, the Scottish Open, was won this year by London 2012 silver medallist Nicola Wilson on her horse One Two Many.

And we’re delighted to report that our own favourite eventing partnership enjoyed a fantastic weekend too, with Tallulah (right) jumping soundly in the novice workers’ class on the Thursday and then trying her very best in the British novices’ class for the next two days, giving Sarah an amazing experience.

Five year old Tallulah saved her best efforts, however, for the final day of competition in the ex-racers and RoR categories. She came sixth to Captain Churchill and Grace O’Keeffe in the Blue Chip Ex-Racers Club Ex Racehorse in Hand Scottish Championship final, seventh in the RoR class and then ended the weekend on a real high as she took second place behind One Step Beyond and Laura Smith in the Blue Chip Ex-Racers Club Ridden Scottish Championship final, being named Reserve Champion in that class.

Tallulah continues to be a shining example of what thoroughbreds can do when their racing careers are over and we are so proud and happy of what Sarah has achieved with her, we’ll continue to track their progress and report back on this page, a massive well done to Sarah and Tallulah and best of luck to you both!  

Tallulah and Sarah’s double second at Brechin Castle

1st August 201410567588_824063527618629_1180501527_n(1)

We have more news on the impressive start to Tallulah‘s eventing career, and the five year old mare who ran eight times for us in 2011 and 2012 continues to make great progress in the hands of her regular rider Sarah Spence.

Tallulah and Sarah competed in the 80cm category at Brechin Castle’s arena event last Sunday (27th July) and although they had four faults in the showjumping, Tallulah flew round the cross country course with a clear and their combined score gave them second place. Tallulah and Sarah (pictured after the show with their prizes!) enjoyed themselves so much that they wanted to do it all again and as a late entry for the 90cm section they again took second with another fantastic performance in the cross country, Tallulah never touched a fence and completed the course in a fast time.

They have a showing show next Sunday (10th August) in preparation for Scotland’s biggest equestrian event, the Blair Atholl Horse Trials in Perthshire, where they will be competing in the Intermediate Workers, 90cm British Showjumping and ridden showing classes. The very best of luck to Tallulah and Sarah, fingers crossed for more rosettes for the trophy cabinet and we’ll let you know how they get on! 

Rummy’s an Ace at the Great Yorkshire Show!

8th July 2014


As we’ve reported previously Angrove Rumbaba, the coloured horse who ran in three bumpers for us back in 2012, has been enjoying his new career in the show ring and we thought you’d like to see him in action at the Great Yorkshire Show in Harrogate today, where he was placed 23rd out of 47 ex-racehorses in the ROR class for his owner Laura Hudson. In true Rummy style, he achieved another ‘first’ in the process, becoming the first coloured horse to compete in an ROR class in the UK.

Rummy was impeccably behaved, including when he was being ridden by the judge, he was beautifully turned out and stole the show as usual!

Popular stayer Mr Crystal enjoying life in Cornwall

27th June 2014

Ten year old gelding Mr Crystal was with us right from the start of his racing career, way back in 2006. He won his first two races over hurdles as a juvenile and he would have gone very close in a nice little Listed race at Wetherby the next time but for falling two out, he won a total of eight races for us including a chase and was a regular runner in the long distance Flat races around Pontefract where he won three times. Instantly recognisable with his big white face, Mr Crystal’s last race was at Pontefract back in October, he was always a popular visitor to that track and we are pleased to inform his loyal fans that he will be continuing his racing career in point to points!

Mr Crystal is based with former amateur jumps jockey Alex Ede in Cornwall, he’s settled into his new surroundings nicely and we’ll keep you up to date with his exploits on this page!

Becky’s Special One returns to Middleham!

23rd June 2014

Our head girl Becky Smith hasn’t had a lot of luck this year with her knee injury keeping her out of the saddle, but there was great news for Becks last week when her favourite ever horse Terenzium came back home to Middleham to spend his retirement with his number one fan.

“Special” as he is known was in training with us for nearly eight years, running in 80 races and winning five times, but it was his win in the 1m5f lady amateur riders’ handicap at Hamilton three years ago to this very day that Terenzium gave Becky her first winner under Rules, staying on gamely to beat Ritsi by half a length. Becks rode him in six more races, twice finishing runner-up, before he left us to go point-to-point racing with trainer Gemma Newcombe earlier this year.

To say that Terenzium didn’t take to pointing would be an understatement, the twelve year old was never travelling and was pulled up before the sixth at Witton Castle and then refused at the third at Mordon a fortnight later. 

So Terenzium has been retired, he is currently residing in a field with our pointer Maxwil and the soon-to-be retrained Spats Colombo, and we are hoping that he can play an important role in Becky’s recovery when she’s able to return to riding later this year. For now though, like his friends Max and Spats, he just wants to eat.

Show girl Tallulah stacking up the prizes!

8th June 2014

We had Tallula from the very start of her career and we ran her in one of the early five furlong two year old maidens at Pontefract in 2011, where she was far from disgraced. However she never went on from that and we called it a day with her after she finished fourth at Hamilton in July 2012, ironically the best run of her short life as a racehorse.

Happily though, Tallula’s story didn’t end there! She was bought to be retrained as an eventer and she has already made great strides in that sphere, trained by Lynne Ward at Hollins Stables in Northallerton and partnered by her new rider and number one fan Sarah Spence who is based north of the border in Dundee.10443828_792120404146275_37686340_n

She has now had an “h” added to her name and Tallulah went to her first show in September last year, competing in three showjumping classes and winning them all. She also made a very promising start at preliminary level in dressage, and with a view to competing in three day events next year, Sarah rode her in her first cross country run earlier this year and she completed the course with only one stop, which augurs extremely well! Tallulah has actually taken brilliantly to cross country, hardly batting an eyelid at anything!

Sarah and Tallulah (right) went to their first show together in May this year in Brechin and the day was an amazing success. They finished fourth in-hand and third in the ridden ex-racehorse section, qualifying for the Blair Atholl Horse Trials, and then Tallulah won the Retraining of Racehorses ridden class and qualified for the 2015 Royal Highland Show.

Tallulah went clear when she competed in her first ever Working Hunter class over 85-90cm in Fife last month and she has finished in the places every time she’s competed in a showjumping competition, only having a single pole down in a one metre class and riding a beautiful dressage at Gleneagles recently. She is a very exciting eventer in the making and she is a fantastic advertisement for retrained racehorses.

Sarah and Tallulah or “Lulah Bear”, who is now five, keep themselves busy and they can’t wait for Blair Atholl where they’ll be going for the full four days and competing in the Intermediate Workers, the 90cm British showjumping and ridden showing classes. It’s fair to say that Sarah, who has done an amazing job with Tallulah, loves her to bits and our little filly has found herself a fantastic new home. We wish them all the very best in their eventing adventure and we’ll keep you informed on their progress right here!

Thanks to Sarah for all the information about Tallulah!

Hatti steps up again in Milan Listed companyMing

2nd June 2014

We’re really enjoying monitoring the heartwarming progress of Hatti in Italy and yesterday she tackled the biggest race of her career so far, the Premio Nogana, a seven furlong Listed contest for three year old fillies at San Siro racecourse.

Hatti, again ridden by Djordje Perovic, ran an absolute blinder to finish fourth, beaten just over two lengths behind French raider Ming Zhi Cosmos, who was sent off the 10/11 favourite following an impressive win in a decent little race at Lyon-Parilly last month. Runner-up Ocean Spirit was already Listed placed and acts as a good yardstick while third-placed Lady Dutch, who finished a length and a half in front of Hatti, had previously finished second in the Premio Regina Elena, the Italian 1,000 Guineas, and came here after running in the Italian Oaks.

All in all pretty impressive stuff from Hatti who also met trouble in running and may be able to improve again!

Hatti continues to shine with Milan win

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Our favourite little grey filly from last season Hatti continues to flourish in Italy and she has now made it into the winner’s enclosure! On Wednesday, ridden by Djordje Perovic, she relished the drop back to seven furlongs and won a conditions race at San Siro in Milan (right) by four lengths from Ocean Spirit, a filly who finished a close third in Listed company on her previous run. Hatti, now trained by Devis Grilli, has already earned over 14,000 euros from her first four races on the continent and now looks set for a step up in class, we’re so pleased for her and we hope she can keep winning!

Rummy still playing his cards right in the show ring424604_516267108440152_1057860477_n

15th May 2014

For a few months back in 2012 everyone knew about Angrove Rumbaba. The four year old gelding was no world beater, but he was a skewbald. A coloured racehorse. And unlike any coloured racehorse that had tried before, he looked capable of being competitive in the world of National Hunt racing.

Bred by Angrove Stud in Great Ayton, near Middlesbrough on the edge of the North York Moors, “Rummy” ran in three bumpers for us in 2012, finishing a highly creditable fifth of 11 on his second start at Sedgefield and becoming the first coloured horse ever to finish in the first three in the UK when he completed in last place in a three-runner race at Hexham on his final start. Partnered by our head girl Becky Smith on all three of his starts, Angrove Rumbaba was a star attraction at Middleham’s 2012 Open Day and he was being trained for a hurdling career when he injured a tendon on the gallops and had to be retired.

“Rummy” went on to make a full recovery and while he could never race again he was retrained and is now a regular on the showing circuit, picking up a whole host of awards for his new owner Laura Hudson in both in-hand and ridden classes. Rummy is totally dedicated to Laura and follows her round like the proverbial lap dog, and we’ll do our best to keep you up to date with his showing achievements right here!

As a footnote to this story Angrove Stud have another coloured horse, Angrove Fatrascal, who they are hoping to put into training with Micky next year when he will be a three year old…again watch this space for more details!

Hatti’s Italian adventure

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We only had Hatti for a short time in 2013 before she went to the sales, but the little grey filly made a big impression on us and she was our only juvenile winner of the season, winning a Redcar nursery over a mile for Michael Stainton in September on the last of her four runs for the 50/50 Racing Club.

Hatti was bought for 11,500gns by Derby Bloodstock Agency and is now in training in Italy with Pisa-based handler Devis Grilli. Italian racing is very regional and Hatti will probably do most of her racing at San Siro racecourse in Milan, in the shadows of the football stadium shared by the Italian giants AC and Internazionale. After a promising debut at the local San Rossore course in Pisa, she has run two really good races in Milan, most recently finishing an excellent fourth behind the potentially high-class three year old Final Score in a fillies’ race over nine furlongs.

It looks like our little Hatti, pictured in the paddock at Devis Grilli’s yard, is set for a successful career in Italy and we’ll update you on her progress on this page whenever she runs!

A new career for Spats Colombo

1st May 2014

Bred by Peter Davies, Spats Colombo (named after a character in the classic American 1950s comedy Some Like It Hot) was a popular Micky Hammond Owners Group horse who improved steadily in three year old handicaps during 2013, winning at Carlisle and Redcar. His Redcar success in August, however, proved to be the last completed race of his career, as we sent him back there a month later but he broke down with a tendon injury and was pulled up.

While his injury was career-ending, it wasn’t life-threatening so we brought him back to Oakwood, got him strapped up and gave him lots and lots of love and care for seven months, at times he’s not been in the best of moods but generally he’s been an excellent patient and the great news is that his leg has now mended and while it won’t take the strain of racing, we are going to try and retrain him as a show jumper…we will be tracking his progress closely, so watch this space!

Some like it hot, some like it slightly on the soft side of good….Spats Colombo and Spats Colombo

Chernik in fine form between the flags!

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We had Chernik here at Oakwood Stables for his entire racing career, which spanned eight seasons and saw him run 31 times. A thorough stayer he won a three mile maiden hurdle at Hexham and an extended three mile novices’ handicap chase at Carlisle and picked up just over £12,000 in prize money for various owners including Bendery Properties Holdings, who now have Luvlylynnthomas in training with us.

Without a win since 2009, Chernik ran his last race for us as a twelve year old at Cartmel in July 2013, but we’re delighted to report that the old boy has been rejuvenated by running in point-to-point races for his new trainer Lynne Ward and he has already won twice between the flags this year. His first success in nearly five years came under Andrew Glass in the Hurworth Hunt Members’ race at Hutton Rudby on March 22nd (pictured), and he followed up at Mordon on April 20th at the Cleveland Hunt meeting, taking the Ladies’ Open in good style in the hands of Harriet Bethell.

There’s clearly plenty of life left in his old legs yet and we’ll been keeping an eye on Chernik at the point-to-points around Yorkshire so watch this space for more updates!  


Becky and Gemma catch up with former yard favourite “Kevin”, or Chernik as he is more commonly known, at Witton Castle point-to-point

Terenzium makes inauspicious point-to-point debut!

6th May 2014

Becky with Terenzium

Becky with Terenzium

Dual-purpose gelding Terenzium ran 80 times for us in a distinguished career which spanned eight years and he has a special place in the heart of our head girl Becky Smith, as he gave Becks her first winner under Rules in a lady amateurs’ handicap at Hamilton in June 2011. Terenzium also won amateurs’ races for Josh Hamer and Simon Walker as well as a couple of handicap hurdles at Wetherby and was rated 116 over timber at his peak.

Now twelve years old, he has his hunter’s certificate with the West Of Yore and is trained by Gemma Newcombe, and had his first run in a point-to-point at the Zetland meeting at Witton yesterday, he made a couple of serious early mistakes and was soon pulled up but he’s always been a trier and we’re sure he’ll do better in time!


Terenzium preparing for his point-to-point debut at Witton

Do you have any news of any horses formerly trained by Micky who are no longer racing under Rules in the UK? If so we’d love to hear from you, you can get in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter or email mickyhammondracing@hotmail.com.