Whatcombe, with its idyllic scenery, is completely private and gives horses what they require to keep them calm and fresh mentally and each horse has its own training programme, tailored to their individual needs.
Whatcombe boasts 450 acres in which there are three sets of private grass gallops, arguably the best in the country, along with two all-weather gallops, 140 stables and an equine pool. Our biggest client was the late Prince Fahd bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, who had approximately 70 horses in training with us each season for many years. We still train for Prince Faisal Salman, his brother. Sheikh Mohammed had a handful of horses with us, along with Prince Khalid Abdullah. Our historic training establishment has been the home of four English Derby winners and a handful of Champion Trainers.
Whatcombe looks to bring out the best potential in its horses with the numerous facilities it offers. This allows a tailored plan of training for the horse, using the extensive gallops and equipment to target an optimal distance, ground, and pace.
Amongst the many stables around the site, there is an indoor school that is a furlong in circumference, which is used for the younger horses, to give them confidence and education in relative safety, before they begin their career in racing. Whatcombe also has a horse walker, allowing horses that aren't in full training to have some exercise. Our equine pool lets the horses with injuries maintain fitness.
The gallop has spectacular views over the Lambourn Valley. Summer Down is historically the winter gallop, with a turf gallop over chalk, which allows quick drainage from the winter climate, so the horses won't struggle in bad ground. Summer Down also has a one mile and a quarter woodchip gallop with a very low attrition rate.
Several Derby winners have been trained on Woolley Downs, one of the best training gallops in the country, known both for the superlative quality of its turf and for its contours which closely resemble those of Tattenham Corner. Woolley is the summer gallop, which doesn't open until May, when the spring comes into the grass. Some of the most eminent jockeys have been most complimentary about the gallop, admiring the springiness and the safety for the work horses.
Paradise, a sand and oil five-furlong gallop, has a record of producing very strong two-year-olds, for which Whatcombe is famed. It is a good and safe gallop to train young horses for the coming season and educate them for the races to come.