You’ll enjoy owning a racehorse with Hambleton, but your visits to Hambleton Lodge Stables will be equally pleasant. On the site of a former racecourse that’s steeped in history, you’ll meet your trainer and horse in a relaxed environment.
David O’Meara’s Willow Farm stables, situated east of York, also offer a relaxed environment and outstanding access to the gallops.
These stable visits will offer not only a great insight into life in a busy racing yard, but also a memorable day on the picturesque gallops as you watch your horse flex his muscles.
A proud racing history
Hambleton Lodge, set amid the grandeur of rural North Yorkshire, has been synonymous with quality racehorses for hundreds of years. The lodge was once used as a training ground by the celebrated Duke of Buckinghamshire. Then, during the 17th century, the principal noblemen and sportsmen of the northern counties helped Hambleton Racecourse become known as a second Newmarket.
Racing began at Hambleton in 1612 or before, with records showing the course, elevated at 1,000 feet, considered a most natural racetrack, and probably the best in the country. Some of the most important aristocratic race meetings in Britain were staged at Hambleton during the 17th century, and the course was given parliamentary approval in 1740, when an order was passed decreeing that racing could take place only at Hambleton, York and Newmarket.
Due to its then remote location, the racecourse closed down in 1775, and local racing moved to Thirsk, where it remains to this day. In more recent times, Hambleton has been a successful training base for many, including Sir Noel Murless and today, of course, Kevin Ryan.