Noel Fehily looking forward to "huge" day at Sandown for racing syndicate

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Noel Fehily: ex-jockey
Noel Fehily: ex-jockey's syndicate has big day ahead at Sandown with two runners (Image: Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Noel Fehily experienced many big days as a top jump jockey but Saturday at Sandown still promises to be “huge” for him and Dave Crosse when Tahmuras and Love Envoi shoot for major honours for Noel Fehily Racing Syndicates.

The Paul Nicholls-trained Tahmuras will attempt to deliver a first Grade 1 success for his owners in the Unibet Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle and Cheltenham Festival winner Love Envoi goes for the Listed Mares’ Hurdle for which she is the odds-on favourite.

“It is a huge day for us,” said Fehily, 47. “Tahmuras is only our second Grade 1 runner. Love Envoi ran in a Grade 1 at Fairyhouse last year and finished second. And she is running in a Listed race so it’s very exciting.”.

When he hung up his boots for good in 2019 after 20 years in the saddle during which he rode over 1,300 winners, including two Champion Hurdles successes, two King George VI Chases and a Champion Chase, Fehily entered retirement with no firm plans.

Yet seven months later he was involved in ownership after launching his ten-member syndicates with his old weighing room pal Crosse. They started with two horses, with the first runner Pride Of Lecale a winner, and now have 26.

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“We never thought we were going to get this big but it was something myself and David said we’d try,” said Fehily. “We got a couple of horses thinking we’d have four horses to have a bit of fun with but it’s gone really well and we have 26 in training now.

“We have a few Saturday horses and they are the kind of horses we want to have. Tahmuras has been brilliant for us. He won his bumper at the end of last season.

“He grew and improved over the summer, won very nicely first time at Chepstow and seemed to improve when winning well at Haydock. Hansard won for Gary Moore at Plumpton on Monday and we have some bumper horses to come through as well.”

Fehily won the Tolworth in 2018 on Summerville Boy, with the pair going on to land the Supreme at Cheltenham.

Noel Fehily looking forward to "huge" day at Sandown for racing syndicateNoel Fehily celebrates on Buveur D'Air, one of two Champion Hurdle victories for him (Rowan Griffiths)

“Tahmuras probably wouldn’t be too dissimilar to Summerville Boy,” he added, “He is probably a better jumper than Summerville Boy was at this stage and they both stay further than two miles.”

Fehily hopes to add a few more horses to the string but is delighted with the way his new venture has progressed in such a short time with the Harry Fry-trained Love Envoi winning last season’s Dawn Run Mares’ Novices Hurdle.

“I haven’t missed the riding side of it,” he said. “When I finished I was ready to finish. I love to sit down and watch racing.

“It was massive for us to get a Cheltenham Festival winner, a day we will never forget. It might never happen again. I know how hard it is to get them and they are what we want to have.”

Jon Lees

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