by JACK ROSE OWNING a horse can be a lucrative business, provided you invest in the right horse and know which trainer will get the best out of your horse. Many footballers invest their earnings in horses in the hope that they can increase their wealth, and while some have been successful, others have suffered multiple failures. Famous racehorse owners are not just limited to footballers though, as even some members of the royal family own horses.
Famous horses like Red Rum and Party Politics have produced lucrative results from a bet on the Grand National although not quite as lucrative as the likes of Mon Mome in 2009 and Auroras Encore in 2013 who were both priced at over 50/1.
We start with Sir Alex Ferguson, who built a legacy over twenty-six years at Premier League club Manchester United. He took his first steps in the horse racing world back in the early 2000s when he became joint owner of Rock of Gibraltar with Sue Magnier, wife of horse breeder John Magnier. The horse had a lot of success, winning ten of the 13 races and was ridden by Michael Kinane. Rock of Gibraltar last raced in October 2002, finishing second out of 14 horses.
While Sir Alex enjoyed much success, the striker he signed for Manchester United in 2004, Wayne Rooney, has had a nightmare owning horses. Rooney bought Pippy and Switcharooney, but unfortunately for the former England international, between them they only managed to win one race. This did not put him off spending his money on horses and in 2014 he bought into Announcement with some of his then United team-mates. Announcement did not fare much better however, winning only two of her seventeen races, placing in another three.
Not only could Rooney learn a thing or two from his former boss, but he could also have done with some advice from former club and international team-mate Michael Owen, who set up the Manor House Stables back in 2007 and is where racehorse trainer Tom Dascombe operates. By mid-2009 the facilities were able to accommodate 90 horses and it was in this facility that Brown Panther, his most successful horse, was trained. The highlight was the King George V Stakes at Royal Ascot in 2011 but he won many other races including the 2013 Goodwood Cup and the 2015 Dubai Gold Cup.
The Royal Family are arguably the most famous racehorse owners of all and the Queen inherited her love of racing from her mother, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, having owned a large number of horses, including Dunkirk, who won the Champion Chase at the 1965 Cheltenham Festival. The Queen’s horses have managed to win all but one of the five British Classics, the exception being the Epsom Derby. The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall also have a love of horse racing and owned Royal Superlative, who won one race from seven runs. Although you’ll see the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at horse racing events, they have yet to follow their family in owning a racehorse.