YOUR OWNERSHIP JOURNEY - #BePartOfIt
Step-by-Step Guide To Ownership Options for NH & the Flat
Making ownership easy, enjoyable and economical
One of the benefits of the yard being a manageable size is that Martin and Belinda Keighley are able to ensure that all their owners feel a real part of the team, and they are always welcome to drop in and see their horse at any time. All owners are important to them, whether they are fortunate enough to have a number of horses or own a share of one. Martin and Belinda are only just a telephone call away, and can help you at every stage in the process of buying and owning a racehorse. There are a number of ways of being involved in ownership, from sole owner, through partnerships and syndicates, to a racing club. Different owners have different budgets and different requirements, and the goal of the Keighleys is to help you to become involved in the most suitable and economical manner.
“We’ve been involved in point-to-point and National Hunt racing for more years than we care to remember. As farmers in the West Country, one of our passions has been following the jumpers and we’ve owned quite a number. A close association with a trainer, their family and stable staff, cheering their horses on and following the highs and lows is such a source of pleasure. It’s definitely not just about winning, although it’s great when success comes your way. We’ve loved having horses with the Keighleys in recent years and it’s a great experience returning to the Cotswolds (having been born at Tetbury), staying locally and watching our horses out on the gallops. Our three-timer with Dreamsundermyfeet was a highlight, and hopefully there’s a lot more to come from him and our youngsters.”
Mike and Mella Wright
Photo is courtesy of Nigel Kirby Photography
Choosing your racehorse
There are a number of different ways of owning a racehorse, and it is our job to make this as easy and enjoyable as possible.
Firstly, decide whether you want to have a horse on your own or with others. You can be a sole owner, a member of a partnership or syndicate, or be involved in a large group in a racing club. The different types of ownership are fully explained on the British Horseracing Authority’s web site, www.britishhorseracing.com, but we are always available to clarify any of the questions you may have.
Secondly, be clear on your total budget for buying the horse, or your share in one, as well as the ongoing monthly training fees and associated costs.
Thirdly, know the type of horse you want, and its preferred age; is it Flat, National Hunt or dual purpose; a youngster, say 3yo or 4yo, or a more mature animal; do you want to go racing straight away, or be more patient and watch it develop and strengthen; do you want to see it racing initially on the Flat, bumping (National Hunt flat racing), hurdling or chasing?
Finally, we’re here to guide you on the best route for sourcing your horse, whether an unraced youngster, a private purchase, from the point-to-point field or via an auction.
“Over the last decade I’ve been involved with ten trainers and more than 80 horses. Martin is now my #1 trainer. No-one runs a friendlier yard. He brings out the best in all the horses – even the moderate ones – and that is the real test of an excellent horseman.”
Jon Hughes, Partner, Owners for Owners
Helping you find the right horse
We are lucky enough to have the services of top bloodstock agents such as Gerry Hogan, Tom Malone and Richard Hobson working for us on the ground in Ireland, the UK and France. They buy horses at all the major sales, but are equally talented at scouting around and finding horses privately as well. They always have the best interests of our owners at heart, and will never pay more than they think the horse is worth, even if sometimes the purchaser is willing to do so. Martin works closely with them in defining the preferred type of horse that the owner wants and, most importantly, the maximum budget. The whole buying process is made as simple and enjoyable as possible, particularly when it involves a trip to a gorgeous location such as Tipperary or the excitement of the Cheltenham Tattersalls sale.
Martin Keighley Racing Partnerships
The fastest-growing ownership group in British racing is partnerships and syndicates. More and more people want to reduce the costs and spread the risks, while maximising their enjoyment of owning horses. Martin Keighley Racing Partnerships have been designed to do just that, and they have proved to be incredibly popular. Indeed, our first two partnerships were sold out within a couple of weeks. We’re running them in conjunction with Paul Davis and Jon and Jacqueline Hughes of Owners for Owners, all of whom have been enthusiastic supporters of ours for a number of years. Do contact Martin for details of the next one, that will be available soon.
In the summer of 2021, we were also thrilled when Debden Bank, running in the colours and name of Martin Keighley Racing Partnership 6, landed his three-timer at Southwell on 13th July. It was a terrific run and he kept on strongly to win by seven lengths. A lovely staying chaser.
We genuinely believe that the partnership package we have put together cannot be beaten for enjoyment and full involvement of all the owners at the lowest sustainable cost. The number of partnership members can vary between 4-12, and we’re trying to keep the purchase price per owner in the range of £3,500 to £5,000 + ongoing training costs. Key features include: everything fully transparent with no hidden costs or margins; no mark-ups on the purchase price of the horse; an all-inclusive, value for money monthly fee; guaranteed badges on race days; open access to the yard at any time; and regular communication by email, video and privileged access social media.
Making the paperwork manageable
All of us get involved in owning horses for the sheer pleasure of watching them galloping at home and racing on the track. Not many of us enjoy the inevitable administration work that comes with registering horses, setting up syndicates, reclaiming VAT and organising badges on race days. We understand that not every owner has had direct experience of the procedures required by the BHA and HMRC, so we have put together a package that explains the best way of doing this, step by step. We are always willing to help new owners cope with the initial complexities and help them build confidence and get started in their ownership career.
Martin Keighley Racing Club
If you don’t want the cost and commitment of owning a horse, but would like to be much more closely involved than just being a racegoer, then do consider joining our Racing Club. Join our ambassadors, Zara Tindall and Kitty King, in this exciting and recently launched venture. Don’t delay because maximum numbers are capped at 50 at any one time. You can join for a one-off annual payment per member of £500, and with absolutely no further costs to pay, for the benefits of being closely involved in the yard: when one of the Club’s two horses run, you can enter a ballot for one of ten owners’ badges; there are regular stable visits and well-organised Club mornings at the yard with refreshments; receive regular emails, photos and videos updating everyone on the progress of the Club’s horses; and attend Martin’s annual Owners’ Day in early Autumn each year.
“It was a joy to cheer on Buckle Street up the Sandown hill. Without any doubt, if Carlsberg did racing clubs they’d definitely do the Martin Keighley Racing Club. Probably the best racing club in the world.”
Mick O’Gorman, Racing Club Member