Budget – Training fees can vary considerably from trainer to trainer. We recommend that you enquire as to what exactly is included in these monthly fees and what extras might arise.
Location – Pre-arranged visits to the yard to watch your horse on the gallops can be one of the most enjoyable aspects of ownership and therefore location may be an important factor in your decision.
Personal Choice - Some owners choose larger more established trainers because of their proven track record while others choose up and coming trainers with smaller yards who can dedicate more time and energy to you and your horse.
Trainer/Owner Agreement- When you meet a potential trainer you should discuss what expenses are likely to arise throughout the year. Many of these costs will be standard, others non-applicable and the remainder unforeseeable. However, you should always be prepared should these additional costs arise. Once you have appointed a trainer we recommend drawing up a written document to establish the terms and conditions of the training agreement. We suggest you discuss the following:
Details of basic training fees per horse per day/week/month.Additional costs such as transport (to and from races or training/schooling ground), travel expenses for trainer and groom if the horse is travelling overnight or a significant distance.Additional veterinary expenses.Clipping fees during the winter season and any additional feed supplements.Retaining fee for yard jockey (if applicable)Commission on sale or purchase of a horse. Method of invoicing.
Acquiring a RacehorseThere are five different ways to acquire your horse:
Trainer - A Trainer will often have horses for sale in their yard that they are keen to keep training. Remember it is in the trainer’s interest to get the best horse possible.
Bloodstock Agent - On receiving your guidelines and budget details, an agent can source a horse for you, generally charging a commission fee of around 5% of purchase value.
Public Auction - Tattersalls, Goffs and Gorsebridge Sales host a wide variety of sales throughout the year. We recommend a trip to the sales as a spectator as there is a lot to be learnt.
Privately - Alternatively you may wish to purchase a horse privately from an associate. Again we recommend expert advice is sought.
Pre-Purchase Pointers - Before you embark on your search for the next Moscow Flyer or Nijinsky please consider the following:
A horse that possess the three P's, Performance, Pedigree, Physical will almost always incur an increased "fourth P" PRICE. The combination of these three qualities does not guarantee ability so don’t be discouraged. A horse does not know how much it cost and anyone involved will tell you there is a lot of luck required in racing!Remember to consider a healthy, correct (good confirmation and legs) animal with average breeding also. Like all athletes, horses have to be physically and anatomically correct as this will minimise the risk of injury.One of the most important aspects to purchasing a racehorse is to be certain that the animal has a clean Veterinary Certificate. It is similar to a survey on a house or NCT for a car. A veterinary inspection will automatically be carried out on horses at the public auction but it is recommended that another is carried out by your own vet also. Refer to the sale catalogue for further terms and conditions of sale. Your trainer is your adviser so do not hesitate to avail of their expertise and ask questions to clarify any doubts you may have.The words "horse" and "investment" should not be associated in the same statement. Like any hobby such as golf or travelling, racehorse ownership should not be considered a profit making exercise.
Insurance - It is not compulsory to insure your horse and the decision is entirely down to personal choice. There are a number of insurance brokers who specialise in equine insurance and the official association contact details are attached below. Insurance for animals running on the flat can be around 8% with National Hunt hurdlers and chasers coming in anywhere at around 10% to 13%