MY ambition was always to have a career with horses, but this was not to be, as my parents, (perhaps wisely) steered me towards a career which would enable me to indulge this passion on my own terms, and I have been fortunate enough to be able to do just that.

My initial mentor was Mick Connors, father of Francis, with whom I spent summer holidays, and I then went on to a stint as assistant trainer to that most wonderful and deep-thinking horseman Willie Robinson.