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  • Ian Ender

STARS OF THE PAST PART 6.

DOMINANT SERENADE. 02 February 1989. Dominion-Sing Softly Owner-North Briton Racing Club.


Dominant Serenade was a flat bred horse who never managed to get his head in front in 20 attempts on the level, but when introduced to the Winter game, he achieved the success his breeding suggested. He was a half brother to the 106 rated Supreme Sound, who went on to be a successful sire of National Hunt horses, and also to Top Cees, a Cesarewitch, and Chester Cup winner.

Dominant Serenade started his racing career in the hands of Buckingham-shire trainer Peter Harris, where he would race a total of 12 times, five of them as a juvenile, in 1991, finishing third on two occasions, and earning a best Racing Post Rating of 70.

On his return at three, he raced a further seven times for Mr Harris, with a third at Warwick in April 1992, off a mark of 62, when beaten just a length, being his best effort.

Dominant Serenade arrived at Oakwood Stables in the Summer of 1992, and ran twice on the flat at Thirsk, and Catterick, over 12 furlongs, keeping on to be placed on both occasions, from a mark of only 49.He made his hurdles debut at Kelso in October, pulling very hard early on, but pleasingly staying on to finish second under Andy Orkney. He put that experience to good use, as 12 days later at Hexham he cruised home by 20 lengths under Peter Niven. The stable realised they had a serious horse on their hands, when just another 11 days later he won the Juvenile hurdle at Cheltenham,the yard also ran Liability Force in the race who finished forth.He was give a short break before returning at Ayr in January, to win for a fourth time in a row, giving away at least 14lb to all of the opposition, and winning at the very short odds of 2/9.He was allowed to take his chance in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham, but faded out of contention to finish 12th of the 25 runners, beaten 15 lengths.Two weeks later at Aintree in the Glenlivet he finished fifth, beaten just under six lengths, which was probably a true reflection of his form, at that stage of his career.

Dominant Serenade made a return to the flat in April, from a very attractive looking mark of just 50, but in six attempts, he could only finish third at best.He was back over hurdles in November 1993, contesting good handicaps from marks in the 130's, with a second at Sandown in Heavy ground in February 1994 being the highlight.

After his Summer break he returned in October 1994, making his chase debut at Carlisle, where he stayed on in to third, having looked in need of the run.He fell on his next two chase attempts, and was returned to hurdles, where he showed he retained plenty of ability in finishing second to Cab On Target at Doncaster in March.He was back over fences at Carlisle in April, where he failed by a short head, but 16 days later at Hexham he broke his duck over fences, winning by three and a half lengths. At Redcar in May, on his return to the flat, he was third from a mark of only 40, and then on his return in August in a two runner race at Perth, over fences,he was beaten at odds of 1/5.

Dominant Serenade raced just twice more, he won at Cartmel, for his second success over fences, eight days after that surprise defeat, and ran for the very last time at Carlisle in September 1995, when finishing second under Peter Niven.


SNOWS RIDE 12 March 2000 Hernando-Crodlle Owner-Belarus Partnership.


Snows Ride was a wonderful servant to the sport of racing, like so many of these wonderful horses are. He raced a total of 60 times, in his eight season career, 26 times on the flat, for his first trainer William Muir, in Lambourn, followed by a further 32 runs for Micky, and a further twice, at the end of his career for Michael Herrington, in North Yorkshire.

Snows Ride is by the Group 1 winning sire Hernando, out of a Formidable mare, making him a half brother to the Group 1 placed mare Ela Athena, who herself was the dam of Group 2 winner Pallasator, and Listed placed Alphonsus.

Snows Ride was one of those lucky horses who managed to escape injury, only having one significant break, when changing yards. He raced twice as a two year old, showing promise on debut at Lingfield, in August 2002, when staying on in to third.As a three year old he raced 14 times, winning on three occasions, and earning a BHA rating of 83. He remained busy as a four year old, racing a further 10 times, but struggled to find his form. He was gelded in June 2004, and that helped, with him being placed on three of his final four starts for the Muir yard, but his mark had tumbled to just 58.

He was purchased by Micky at the 2004 Newmarket sales, and made his hurdles debut Wetherby in March 2005, finishing third under Graham Lee.He got off the mark over jumps at the forth time of asking at Sedgefield in May, in a novice hurdle, and won there again in September under a penalty.He was third on his handicap debut at Wetherby on his next start, but lost his way after, racing a further 10 times, over the next 18 months, and seeing his mark slip from a high of 110, to just 87.

In October 2007, under his favoured conditions of fast ground, and around two and a half miles, he found his form again, notching up a hat-trick in just six weeks, twice at Sedgefield, and once at Kelso, he was also well in touch in his next race at Market Rasen, when falling for the one and only time in his career.

Snows Ride raced a further 11 times for the yard in the 2008-2009 season,including his one and only attempt over fences, but he never got competitive again, he raced twice in 2010 for Michael Herrington without any promise, and at the age of 10 his career came to an end. Like many other horses, Snows Ride is too easily forgotten, because he wasn't in the top 5%. but it is horses like him that help keep the show on the road.


AMIR PASHA. 14 March 2005. Halling-Clarinda Owner-M.H.O.G.


Without making enquiries I cannot be 100% sure that another horse has made more appearances from Oakwood Stables than Amir Pasha, who in total raced an incredible 128 times during an eight season career, both on the flat, and over jumps. He is a very well bred horse, being by Juddmonte International winner Halling, out of a mare who had her four race career cut short by injury, but still registered a BHA rating of 97.

Both his sire and dam were regular rides for the late Walter Swinburn, so it was fitting that Amir Pasha should start out his racing career, in Hertfordshire, with that racehorse trainer, Amir Pasha ran six times for Walter Swinburn, all as a three year old, his best effort coming at Wolverhampton, on his last start for the yard,in October 2008, earning a mark of 59. He was purchased at the Newmarket sales soon after by Micky, and would run in the colours of Mr McAllister. In November he made his hurdles debut, but showed very little in his first four attempts.He had his first run on the flat for us at Musselburgh in April 2009, and ran his best race to date, finishing third over two miles, beaten just three lengths.That was something he failed to repeat under both codes, until in December, when at the 20th attempt he finally got off the mark in the selling hurdle at Catterick. Now he had got the hang of it, it was only 13 days until he was winning again, back at Catterick, but this time in a non seller,and stepping up to two miles and three furlongs.

During 2010 Amir Pasha would run a staggering 21 times under both codes, winning three times, and being placed a further 10. His hurdles mark was now 111, and his flat rating had increased to 65.

Since joining the yard two years previously, Amir Pasha had not had a proper break from racing, and it was only 85 days until he was back in action, finishing third over the jumps at Musselburgh in February 2011.He would once again run 21 times during 2011, this time winning once, and being placed 14 times, although he also won on January 1st, 2012 at Catterick.

This remarkable horse ran a further 19 times in 2012, and reappeared 17 times in 2013, at the age of six in 2014, he ran 18 times, and in his final season of racing in 2015, which was curtailed by injury, he had run 10 times by June. During that final season he had six attempts over fences, but like many flat bred horses he probably didn't enjoy the experience very much. He finished a very courageous career having run 128 times, winning on 10 occasions, and finishing in the first three a further 32 times. A truly remarkable record by any standards.

He is one of those lucky horses, who now enjoys a wonderful retirement in the care of his new doting owner.

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