Dreams Do Come True

Highclere’s Jason Fildes reports on a memorable day that saw a syndicate-owned filly win the 1000 Guineas

What an incredible story this is. In the world of horse racing where the big races are dominated by the financial superpowers of Arab owners or the Irish Coolmore organisation, a filly, bought for only £60,000, owned by a syndicate, wins one of the five British Classics at odds of 18-1.

This is what happened at the famous Rowley Mile Racecourse at Newmarket.

Last year Cachet, trained by George Boughey, ran eight times, having only been bought at the breeze up sales in April. Her season finished off with that memorable trip to the Breeders’ Cup in California in November.

After that, George gave her a well-earned break before her reappearance in the Nell Gwynn Stakes at Newmarket. She won that day, encouraging us to have a crack at the 1000 Guineas, the second of the Classics run over one mile for three-year-old fillies, to be held on the first Sunday in May.

Although only an outsider in the field of 13, we were hopeful of a good run, perhaps in the first six but expectations were rightfully limited with the best fillies from Ireland and France among the opposition plus the Godolphin and Juddmonte-owned fillies from top UK stables. Nevertheless, the nerves and excitement among the large group of Highclere owners and friends was building – and by race time of 3.40pm it was at fever pitch!

Our trainer, George Boughey is only 29 years old and has only been training for three years.

George’s rise has been phenomenal and he is a trainer with a huge future.

He had Cachet looking fabulous for the big day and primed to perfection. Our jockey, James Doyle, was a substitute for William Buick who was claimed to ride for Godolphin in a late switch and James’ plan was to let Cachet jump out of the stalls and bowl along in front, where she likes to be.

It worked brilliantly as James was able to take her along in the lead without having to go too fast in front. She settled beautifully and was clearly enjoying herself and in a great rhythm.

She was still a length in front at the 2f pole when James asked her to stretch on and she did – extending her advantage with some of the favourites not making any impression on her. It’s a long last furlong up a slight incline and it seemed like everything was in slow motion.

Having been in front all the way, Cachet was getting tired but she’s tough and kept on bravely all the way to the line.

It was only a neck back to the second, but she had held on.

Cue delirious scenes in the stands with all the owners hugging one another in disbelief and what a welcome our wonderful filly got when she returned to the Winner’s Enclosure.

I think the celebrations are still going on in certain parts of the country but suffice to say that Cachet has now won over £450k in prize money and is heading next for either the French 1000 Guineas at Longchamp, Paris, or Royal Ascot (or even both). George reports her to be really well and ready to go again. She loves her racing.

Highclere boss Harry Herbert was very emotional afterwards. Cachet was bought by his nephew, Jake Warren and it’s a lifetime ambition realised in Highclere’s 30th anniversary year. What an achievement – and what a thrill for all of us involved!

Highclere – Jason Fildes
01200 444622
07721 311778



Tedd Walmsley

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