24th Nov 2017

Blackmores Celebrate success at Fakenham

It was a wonderful day for the country’s oldest trainer when Fakenham staged its third meeting of the season on Tuesday, November 21.

Thirteen-year-old Occasionally Yours won the opening selling hurdle which attracted just three runners.

But for 89-year-old Alan Blackmore of Little Berkhamsted in Hertfordshire, along with his wife Pat, it was a fantastic success and they were overjoyed after jockey Jack Quinlan had squeezed a tenth career victory from the gelding from 79 career starts.

Normally ridden by Tabitha Worsley, it was a magical victory for the Blackmores, the 9/4 winner following up a recent Huntingdon success.

Tabitha had been seriously injured in the last flight fall from trainer Robin Dickin’s The Lion Man at Ludlow the previous Thursday.

“This is very special for us. We do everything ourselves with Basil, as we call him at home,” said Mrs Blackmore.

“It was a great win and it’s a great day for a geriatric trainer and a geriatric horse,” said Alan.

“Basil simply doesn’t accept he is 13. My thoughts go out to Tabitha who usually rides him. I rode him when I was an amateur so it’s lovely to be back on board,” said Quinlan.

It was the 20th race at the course for Occasionally Yours and just his second success, the first coming back in May 2015.

The Blackmores are regular visitors to Fakenham and were the trainers of the legendary Fakenham winner Cool Roxy, after whom a bar at the north Norfolk course is named.

Cool Roxy won 12 of 77 career starts, with all but one of those wins coming at Fakenham from 26 starts.

The Blackmores have been training since season 1988/89 making the current season their 30th in succession. In total, they have recorded 29 victories.




Words by Terry Redhead / Images by Roger Harris. 

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David Hunter