Philip Kirby Racing

Racehorse Trainer based at Richmond, North Yorkshire

Our NH Preview part 3

As we head into Autumn and Winter, we can’t help but compare our wonderful facilities now to when we struggled in the early days high up in the North Yorkshire Moors… in the Winters of 2010 and 2011   we could barely get the horsebox out up the hills to the Reveley gallops and we ended up doing a lot of this – snow cantering! Luckily we don’t seem to get snow like that where we live now – we had the odd morning of it last year, but we were so high up at Castleton it would be snowy there when everywhere else in Yorkshire was raining. It certainly was a challenge, but we came through it, and its a constant reminder of how lucky we are to be here at Green Oaks now. Pictured below at Castleton – Amazing King being the middle horse in the photo – a 9 time winner for us trained on the Yorkshire Moors, and still with us now in happy retirement at Green Oaks.

Nautical Nitwit

Our first horse to look at on the preview tonight has always reminded us of one of our original top horses – ‘Nautical Nitwit’ has stepped into the shoes of Goldan Jess – he is a little bay terrier of a horse just like Jess was, and although he is yet to win round Cartmel, you wouldn’t put it past him given the decent third he posted there recently under a big weight. Nitwit is a victim of his own consistency with the handicapper (improved from 118 up to 132 since joining us) and he rarely runs a bad race – since Phil bought him from

Ascot sales for £6000 he has won 3 good handicap races, and is in the first 3 more often than not.  3rd on his latest start at  Worcester in a Class 3, he put maximum effort in as always, and earned another £1000 + for his Partnership, although the handicapper did not drop him even a pound for his 5 length beating.  Racing Post used this quote from Phil after his most recent win at Southwell earlier in the year:

QUOTES: Nautical Nitwit is very genuine and nearly always runs his race. He keeps creeping up the handicap but still keeps winning. I’m sure that one day he can win a decent handicap – Phil Kirby, trainer.

At home Nitwit is as straightforward as he is on the racecourse and has come out of his Worcester race well.  We look forward to heading to Wetherby with him on Octber 18th for a 0-140, and he spearheads a big team for us that day at our Grade 1 Yorkshire track.

From a high class handicapper to a dual bumper winner – 7 year old  ‘Nicely Indeed’ by Marienbard is a new addition to the yard, and as he is still eligible for novices, and this is where he will be heading as he bids to back up the promise of those two bumper wins. His most recent hurdles form for Kim Bailey was  encouraging, 2nd at Warwick and 3rd at Uttoxeter in May before a summer out,  and he starts off the season with a handicap mark of 119. Nicely Indeed is owned by Ownaracehorse so he is sure to have plenty of support when he makes his debut for us.  We would like to think he can break his maiden tag soon and he gets his first chance next week at Sedgefield in a novice.

‘Eastview Boy’, known as ‘Willie’ as home, is another horse owned by a Partnership, ‘Eastview

Eastview Boy

Thoroughbred’s’ and they have had some good days out with him so far, winning two races at Newcastle – a novice hurdle and a novice handicap chase, and he should still be coming to his peak at 6 years old. Willie is by local stallion, Iktibas, and he is the second winner by the stallion we have trained, his younger full brother ‘Iktiview’ also won 2 races for us. He came in a little later than some of the others, so won’t be seen out until later in October, but off a chase mark of 114 and a hurdle mark of 111, there is scope for getting his head in front again this winter. He will be seen round tracks such as Wetherby, Market Rasen and of course, Newcastle and he bids for career win number 3.

Mckenzie’s Friend

Formerly trained by Oliver Sherwood, the 6 year old ‘Mckenzie’s Friend’ will run in the same colours as bumper winner, Baracalu, and he joined us from  Goffs UK  this summer. There was plenty of interest in him at Doncaster, and he looks to be a horse with a touch of class, although he is on the comeback trail now, and is an interesting prospect. A good looking bay gelding by Flemensfirth out of an Oscar mare, his pedigree is all about stamina, and when he won his second novice hurdle back in 2015 it was over  2m 4f.  He has a full brother in training with Dan Skelton, the year older ‘Asylo’ who isn’t as good as him with a rating of 101. Getting him back to his novice hurdle form is the aim this season, and no doubt he will jump a fence in time too.

‘Hangard’ is a horse who has taken time to get to grips with training, but this big powerful 6 year old

Hangard – Exciting NH prospect

will be ready to make his NH debut in the next 6-8 weeks and he has some lofty footsteps to follow, he being a half brother to the top class mare, Ron’s Dream (144) and the high class staying chaser ‘Fistral Beach’ (149). His dam, Empress of Light was flat bred through and through – and trained by


Marcus Tregoning she achieved little on the track, a 7th of 11 being her best result from just 3 career starts and a flat rpr of 54. However, when put to staying stallions she has proved her worth as an Elite NH  broodmare, and we hope that Hangard can also scale the heights as a succesful chaser and further enhance the family. He impresses those who ride him and he seems to have a good attitude and a natural jumping technique. He will start off in a NH maiden or novice hurdle at a galloping track such as Wetherby but not before the winter rain arrives.

Shine Baby Shine

Three young ones to finish off tonights preview –  starting with the 3 year old Aqlaam filly ‘Shine Baby Shine’ who has been progressive on the flat

Shine Baby Shine.

once contesting handicap company, winning by 12 lengths at Southwell over 2 miles before just going down by a neck on her latest start at Newcastle under a penalty. Not many 3 year old fillies win by such a wide margin over 2 miles on fibresand, and what is clear is that this filly has stamina in abundance, and the ability to cope with give in the ground. She looks tailor-made for a mares juvenile hurdle, and although she hasn’t schooled yet, this is a route that will be considered for her this Autumn and Winter. She has had a couple of quiet weeks since her busy August, and this well bred filly is one to keep on the right side of if she goes down the NH route. 25% remains ‘for sale’ in her, and we are suprised this hasn’t been snapped up yet.

Homebred 3 year old ‘Show Promise’ has a stout NH bred damside so although he is by the dual

Show Promise

purpose stallion, Josr Algarhoud, he has been kept back for bumpers, and won’t likely be see out until sometime in the Spring/Summer of next year. He is doing all his canter work well, and looks a fine sort of horse with a good, trainable temperament, and if he can emulate his half brother, ‘Improved’  we will be happy – he won a bumper on debut for us and also won over hurdles this Spring. Show Promise could be a potential chaser in time, his dam ‘Show Potential’ is a half sister to the former 150+ rated staying chaser, Well Refreshed out of  Listed hurdle wining dam, Cool Spring. Its an interesting mix of speed and stamina – he is one to look out for in 2018 and can be bought at sensible money to remain in the yard.

The unraced 3 year old nearest camera, True Ballew, head down, alongside Shine Baby Shine

A final 3 year old to finish off with, and this is the bay  filly, ‘True Ballew’ who will be going down the bumper route after taking her time to grow and mature this summer. Out of the 9 time winning mile mare, Hula Ballew, she is by the sprint sire, Equiano, and while its not a  stamina laden pedigree, this filly puts her head down and tries hard up the gallop, and although small has the stride length of a bigger horse. Her enthusiastic Owners have been involved since a yearling and are looking forward to seeing her make her belated debut. Equiano is a fine sire of fillies and lets hope she can add to his tally in time.

True Ballew as a foal at Castleton




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