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11 June 1987.


Owner-John Doyle Construction Limited.

Not just one of the best bred horses to strut his stuff for Micky, but also one of the most talented. Sir Peter Lely was bred to be a high class middle distance performer, being by the 1983 Derby winner Teenoso, out of the mare Picture, who had already produced the top class sprinter, Print, by Sharpo.

Sir Peter Lely started out life by being trained by Lord Huntington, who wasted no time in dropping Sir Peter Lely into a claimer at Ayr, on his third start, in his first season racing, as a three year old. Sir Peter Lely won the race, and the lucky claimant sent the horse to Micky to continue his racing career.

He made his hurdles debut for his new yard at Kelso on December 3rd, 1990, with Neal Doughty doing the steering, he made all and stayed on well, something he would repeat on many occasions during his illustrious career. After being placed a further three times, he came good again in April 1991, under Peter Niven, winning his second novice hurdle of that season.

After his Summer break, he returned in November at Wetherby, in handicap company,almost making all, but going down by a neck off a mark of 121.He raced a further nine times that season, winning on two more occasions, when making all, it was becoming evident that Sir Peter definitely had a preference for top of the ground conditions. He started the 1992-1993 season over fences, making the perfect start at Hexham, he made all again, coming home by an easy 10 lengths.This was followed by him finishing second, and then third, on both of his next two runs under penalties.This was followed by the first interruption to his racing career, when injury kept him off the track until October 1993. A career break through injury can often signify the end for a horses progress, but it certainly didn't affect Sir Peter. At Carlisle he won the handicap chase by 20 lengths, in the hands of Chris Grant. This was followed by two back to back wins at Musselburgh, with the Amateur jockey Chris Bonner in the saddle both times.After falling at the ninth at Doncaster on his next start, his upward curve continued at Newcastle, when left clear at the last, after looking possibly held, he finished his season with a mark of 125.

He returned at Wetherby in October 1994, finishing fifth of the eight runners, and this was followed by a lacklustre effort at Catterick. It was then decided that a step up in trip was required, which did the trick as he made all over three miles once again at Musselburgh. The following April, he made his first visit to Aintree, where he finished a very respectable forth in the John Hughes Memorial Trophy.He returned to Aintree for the November meeting, finishing runner up in the Becher Chase over three miles and three furlongs, staying on strongly, on good to firm ground. It was quite evident that the yard had now got a potential Grand National winner on their hands, and he was trained with that in mind.

He had two more runs, pulling up at Sandown, and falling at the second at Doncaster, before the Grand National of 1996. Ridden by Chris Bonner, who now knew him very well. and from a mark of 145, he was a strong finishing forth over four miles and four furlongs, in Rough Quests year.He only ran on another three occasions after that, all in esteemed company, before his career came to an end as a 12 year old, back at Aintree, over the fences he loved so much.

Sir Peter Lely spent his retirement being treated like a 'V.I.P.' by the racehorse trainer Sara Ender, who rode him out everyday, and when he couldn't be ridden anymore, he would spend his days mixing with the youngsters out in the field. He joined Sara in 2004, and lived to the ripe old age of 24.

To keep up to date with all the latest happenings at Oakwood Stables, Sharp Hill, and Curlew, click on 'NEWS' at www.mickyhammondracing.

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