MASTER OF THE HALL. 28 April 2004 Saddlers Hall-Frankly Native Owner-Masters Of The Hall.
One of the classiest horses to have been resident at Oakwood Stables in recent years was Master Of The Hall, he arrived from Doncaster's Autumn in Training Sales in 2013, purchased by the 'Masters Of The Hall' syndicate, which included BHA Chief Executive, Nick Rust, who had owned other horses in the yard in previous years. Master Of The Hall was bought to be a 'Saturday' horse, arriving with some top class form already in the book. Master Of The Hall started out life by winning an Irish Point at Dromahane on debut, and was then sold on to race for Nicky Henderson, who tested the water by running him in a bumper at Sandown, where after travelling well, found himself outpaced. His next race was his hurdles debut also at Sandown, where he went off 1/1 favourite, coming home on the bridle. He followed up at Newbury, and then in more exalted company at Huntingdon, finished his season with a 3rd place and a rating of 142.
His chase debut in November 2010 was a winning one at Ascot, after a 5th placing at Cheltenham, and a further success at Huntingdon, his season culminated with a win in the prestigious Reynoldstown Novices Chase Grade 2, also at Ascot. After a Summer break he returned at Aintree in December 2011, winning a Listed Chase by sixteen lengths. His final win for the Henderson yard came at Kelso the following March under A.P.McCoy.
After joining us he made his yard debut in the Grade 2 Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby, he was just beginning to come under pressure 4 out when he took a very unfortunate heavy fall, leaving him winded for several minutes, this affected his confidence, as next time in the Rehearsal Chase at Newcastle, and then again in the Rowland Meyrick at Wetherby on Boxing Day, he never jumped with any fluency. The decision was taken to return to hurdles to restore his confidence. He would have 8 races over hurdles during the Spring of 2014 before finally getting his head in front at Market Rasen with Joe Colliver in the saddle off a much reduced mark of 104. With his confidence now restored he began to make up for lost time, being placed 4 times in his next 6 races, culminating in his biggest moment for us, by winning the £25.000 handicap hurdle at Market Rasen, taking his official mark back up to 127.
He raced for one more season, returning in a chase at his now favourite Market Rasen, but once again his jumping was not all it should be, so it was back over hurdles, where he won his last race at Hexham in the hands of Jamie Bargary. At the grand old age of eleven he raced 8 times, mixing hurdles and fences, and never finishing out of the first four, with his last racecourse appearance being at Southwell over fences on August 16th, 2015 where he was 3rd.
Nicky Henderson may have had the best out of Master Of The Hall's young legs, but as an older horse, he gave us some great memories to saviour.