Group 1 winning jockey Luke Morris’s landmark victory on 17th January was also a special moment for Archie and the team at Saxon Gate.
Luke, who has been a key part of Archie’s success since he began training in 2016, celebrated his 2,000th domestic winner on our prolific three-year-old Colors Of Freedom at Southwell.
Her win in a five-furlong handicap on the Tapeta was her third in succession following impressive performances at Newcastle and over the same course and distance – all under the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe winner.
It was Luke’s 45th UK winner for Archie, a tally he added to when Colors Of Freedom completed a remarkable four-timer and a January hat-trick over the minimum distance at Lingfield Park 10 days later. The daughter of Mayson, who runs for Taylor’s Bloodstock, improved her rating from 51 to 67.
With stable jockey Hollie Doyle nursing a fractured arm, Luke was also successful at the end of the month on the consistent Chief’s Will who deserved his gritty victory in a mile handicap at Southwell in the colours of Hamad Rashed Bin Ghedayer.
January began well with two doubles in consecutive days featuring Hollie and our talented apprentice Taylor Fisher. Made Of Lir and Abbey’s Dream completed an across-the-card double on the 2nd, the Cool Silk Partnership’s filly making all the running to win a six-furlong handicap at Lingfield for Taylor before Abbey’s Dream landed a seven-furlong maiden at Newcastle for Hollie.
A day later Taylor gave Mafia Power an excellent ride to take a nine and a half-furlong handicap at Wolverhampton by a hard-fought neck after Hollie helped Star Child shed her maiden tag at Chelmsford City. Star Child, a daughter of Gleneagles, got the better of a sustained duel to score at the fourth attempt for Ben and Sir Martyn Arbib.
Taylor drove up to Newcastle on 20th January to upset the odds on Hambleton Racing’s First Snowfall in a ten-furlong classified race. It was a breakthrough success for the six-year-old daughter of Dubawi.
Meanwhile, at Kempton Park in the first week of the New Year, Imperial Sands returned to the winner’s enclosure in a Class 3 mile handicap under a determined ride by Hollie – his first outing in the colours of Ryedale Racing.
Archie and his wife Brodie (Hampson) continued to enjoy a memorable winter in the National Hunt sphere when Chosen Hero scored in a mares’ bumper at Wetherby. Sean Bowen extended Hambleton Racing’s record in that code to seven wins from 17 runners with Archie – a remarkable strike rate of over 40 per cent.
By Simon Mapletoft