He may have won the Grand National three times as an owner, but Trevor Hemmings has decided it’s time to scale down his racing interests. Hemmings, who is now 85-years-old has been in the horse racing industry for 36 years and is one of the sports most successful owners.
Like Michael O’Leary winding down his Gigginstown operation, Hemmings is planning to sell around 50 of his horses at the Goffs UK September sale. That will leave him with approximately 25 runners in training. And there are plenty of good reasons for his decision.
Since the lockdown he has been unable to leave his home in the Isle Of Man and both his personal and business interests have been affected because of it.
His racing manager Michael Meagher said: ‘The effect of Covid-19 is part of it. It’s a big reduction, but he’s still going to be involved.’
He added: ‘He’s a bit locked up in the Isle of Man now. It’s obviously disappointing he can’t leave the island and go racing.
‘We’re not certain about which trainers Mr Hemmings will continue to employ as yet.’
One horse who is definitely staying is Lake View Lad. Trainer Nick Alexander confirmed the plans. He said “I am pleased to say that his connection with Kinneston will continue as Lake View Lad will remain in training here.
“We will do our utmost to have the horse in peak condition for the 2021 Grand National.”
Hemmings Big Winners
With Lake View Lad being firmly aimed at the Grand National in 2021, could he possibly add to Hemmings already incredible tally in the race? He first lifted the trophy in 2005 with Hedgehunter, trained by Willie Mullins and ridden by Ruby Walsh.
Six years later and Ballabriggs rode to victory in 2011 for trainer Donald McCain Jnr. A four-year gap later and Many Clouds romped home for trainer Oliver Sherwood in 2015. Incidentally, both Hedgehunter and Ballabriggs are still owned by Hemmings and live in retirement at the Ballaseyr stud on the Isle Of Man.
While Trevor Hemmings may be best known for his love of the Grand National, he has also had some incredible Cheltenham Festival wins. He owned three-time winner Albertas Run and in the last five seasons, has had 106 winners and earned over £1.7 million in prize-money.
That will be a drop in the ocean for a man whose fortune is estimated to be over a billion pounds. He is a property tycoon who owns pubs and hotels as well as Preston North End football club.
Rags To Riches
Generally known to be a quiet and unassuming man, Hemmings fortune was made through hard graft. He said “I have competed every day of my life.
“I started out with nothing. It’s not nothing now.
“In life I am not a great person for looking back. I am always looking for what next, where next and why next. That is important.
“I don’t do anything half-heartedly. If I am in I am in. I want to do it properly and I want to be successful.”
And for those of you that are curious about what he spends his cash on, Hemmings is quite the charitable guy. He is a supporter of a number of charities, among them Diabetes UK.
He added “I believe it (my money) can’t go in one pocket. It should be spread everywhere.”
He is also chairman of the TJH Foundation, a charity which makes grants to organisations such as Macmillan Cancer Relief, St John Ambulance, Crimestoppers Trust and the Royal National Lifeboat Association, the Injured Jockeys’ Fund and Racing Welfare.
The Future For Hemmings
So although Trevor Hemmings is scaling back his operations in horse racing, he will still have plenty of runners to cheer on.
He may not be saddling three or four Grand National runners in his recognisable green and gold silks, but undoubtedly he will turn out one or two corkers who may just give the rest of the field a serious run for their money.