Our centenary racing syndicate starts in style at aintree

The Stowe 100 Racing Club was fortunate to have its first runner at Aintree on Saturday 3 December 2022. Having a runner at this historic course and over the Grand National fences really has set the bar high for the owner race day experience that Old Stoics, parents and staff will come to expect at future races!

Aintree looked after us well with our own table in the dedicated owner and trainer’s restaurant with panoramic views of the course, plus we had the exclusive opportunity of walking the course and getting close to some of the iconic fences such as Becher’s Brook and the Canal Turn.

The beautiful grey that is Fagan, trained by Alex Hales (Chandos 92) near Banbury, gave us all such a thrill by jumping impeccably around the Grand National course and finished a very commendable 10th of 22 in his first race in nearly a year.

He was ridden by 2017 Grand National winning jockey Derek Fox (One For Arthur) as unfortunately our Stowe “stable jockey” Harry Bannister (Chatham 12) is recovering from a fractured hip following a fall at Stratford in the autumn.

Derek gave Fagan a very sympathetic ride and as they approached the Canal Turn on the second circuit it looked like he might play a hand at the finish, but the quicker ground wasn’t to his liking and he struggled to make an impression in the final half a mile.

He did however win the best turned out award, which was due recognition to Alex‘s top team of Amanda and Charlotte who tended to his every need on the day. The plan is to run him again in a three-mile handicap chase and we hope to target some of the bigger festivals towards the end of season before the two flat horses in training with Ed Bethell (Cobham 12) and Jonathan Portman (Chatham 83) take up the mantle.

This is such an exciting syndicate to run and it complements our two other Old Stoic Racing Clubs very well, meaning in 2023 we will collectively have six racehorses gracing the track in our blue and yellow colours. Not bad considering we only had one horse – the now happily retired Topper Thornton – when this all started back in 2017.

None of this would be possible without the sustained support of the trainers, the owners in all our syndicates and, of course, the School.

Finally, if you would like to know more about becoming a member in any of our syndicates then please contact me (henrykimbell@hotmail.com or 07979 522744). It is a superb way of dipping your toe into ownership – with a special link to Stowe – plus we ensure there is a busy calendar of social events, so you have the chance to make friends and re-establish some long-lost relationships.

Henry Kimbell (Chandos 04)

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