• Posted: Monday, 21st December 2020
  • Author: Jake Exelby
  • Photo: Neale Blackburn

Julie – who trained her first winner almost 20 years ago – and husband Charlie have been based at Leamington Hastings, Warwickshire since 2008. She is noted for her ability to hit the ground running, with a great first time out record and this year – despite a smaller string than usual – she has done it again, stable star Golden Tobouggan having scored at Maisemore Park on his first run since early 2019. Jake Exelby hears from her about the prospects for the prolific nine-year-old and the other three horses in her yard for the season to come.

Golden Tobouggan

Only nine, but it feels like has been with me nearly as long as Midnight King! To call him high maintenance is an understatement, as he’s only happy when I am stressing about him! The lovely Gorbit Racing Partnership have had some great days with him and I think his recent win after a long layoff was right up there with his best performances – certainly for me it was massive. Winning is tough these days, as there are so many good horses out there, but he is in good order so hopefully he can get his nose in front again. He was meant to go to Chaddesley Corbett but the ground got too soft, so Charing is the plan now.

Midnight King

My dear old friend. I had a painting of him commissioned of him last season as he was meant to retire, but having only run once last season – a gallant third in a Mens Open before lockdown – and obviously still loving life, we had to have another go this season. He ran another good third at Kimble first time out and promptly decked me three days later! So retirement is on hold – just for now....

Signed and Sealed

A lovely horse by Authorised. Having run on the flat before we had him, he’s had to learn how to jump and settle. He won his Maiden and Restricted over two and a half miles, the latter very impressively. We threw him in at the deep end in a Mens Open at Kimble this time as it was the only two and a half mile race we could find. He has had a wind operation since and is in great order but finding a shorter distance Intermediate is not easy. He wants top of the ground and is a very easy horse at home so we are in no hurry – roll on spring!

The Golden Rebel

I think he has a lot of talent. It took him a while to get his act together but he won his Maiden and Restricted back-to-back last season. He has got to up his game on the track now but he has improved hugely at home so I’m hopeful. He is well connected so has a lot to live up to and will also hopefully also go to Charing.