Racing: Gosden puts in a word for Glamis

A long-shot may add to the excellent Derby record of another Newmarket `outsider'.

THE FACT is that he will be running Glamis at Epsom a week on Saturday, but John Gosden accepts there will be some fanciful rumours about his life between now and Derby day.

Since he returned to Britain in 1988 many people have seemed to be Billy Liar for the trainer, inventing unlikely postings for the big man. It has all stemmed from Gosden's relationship with Sheikh Mohammed and the rumour mill has cancelled all leave ever since the world's most powerful owner started forming his own Godolphin battalion largely at the expense of Gosden's string at Stanley House.

"The first five years I was back in this country the rumour was always that I would be returning to America," Gosden says. "I'll admit I was not particularly happy then, but I was never going back to America because I'm not the type of person who gives up very easily.

"The next three years, just at the time when Guy Harwood was winding down, I was supposed to be going to Pulborough. And, for the last two years, Godolphin have meant to be coming here and I'm going off to do anything from management to retiring from training altogether and even back to Pulborough again so I hear this week. They've all been very interesting stories, but unfortunately they've been spurious and nonsensical as well."

The oddity is that while Gosden may no longer be getting the cream of the desert crop he is enjoying his profession like at no other time. As he labours happily on the Bury Road the freeze of 1988 which greeted him seems distant.

Gosden was not expecting a tickertape reception from his fellow trainers when he was repatriated from the United States by Sheikh Mohammed. Neither, though, did he imagine sniper fire coming from the ramparts of Fort Suffolk. "Newmarket had the mentality of a garrison town and I was some interloper from outside," he says. "The fact that I was born and brought up in England and had been with Noel Murless in Newmarket for two years seemed to count for nothing. The attitude was that I was some bloody American coming back to nick the good horses.

"People like Mark Prescott were great from the start. Others were not. I've always felt there are people here who have delusions of grandeur and a sense of being something more important in the world than they really are.

"But now it's better. I happen to be very happy here. I've every intention of training in Newmarket for as long as I can, as long as the health holds up. So I'm not going to be running off to become a Trappist monk.''

Indeed, it would be more likely for Gosden to become a hairdresser's model. There is no-one in his craft comparable in communication skills. Gosden can talk. He has trained for Elizabeth Taylor and Ronnie Wood, for the old nobility and new money of David Platt and Michael Owen. He knows how to find the level. The greatest gift though has been to keep his counsel. When Henry Cecil questioned Sheikh Mohammed the vans were soon arriving. Gosden has always accepted the Dubaian's decisions (a chunky retainer helps in this respect) and got on with it.

In the early days, the Sheikh's Darley Stud Management company was in a mess. There were 52 trainers on the payroll supervising the progeny of unproven stallions. Gosden was given what was meant to be the best, but the results did not come. Sheikh Mohammed may have forgiven him this, but for some observers it was a sign of fallibility. Some wrote about it. Gosden must have been stung, but he has never let it show.

"The [Darley] operation through the Eighties had to be rationalised," he says. "The sheer number of horses, the number of trainers was, to put it politely, unnecessary. The quality of stock coming into this yard has diminished, but then for the first five years I was here it wasn't that great anyhow. In life, my life, I've got to get on with what's available and do the best I can."

The great irony is that after all the years of supposed Derby horses being ferried into his yard by Sheikh Mohammed, John Gosden may at last be about to send out the maroon and white silks to Blue Riband victory while his principal owner's attention is elsewhere.

There are Godolphin horses more fancied than Glamis but Gosden is not a man to discount in the Derby. His last four runners in the Classic have been placed, the efforts of Tamure, Presenting and Shantou preceding Benny The Dip's victory two years ago.

"Glamis will get the trip and he should handle the track," the trainer said. "If it's good or good to firm ground he might get a little piece of what is a big pie. To win would be nice but we would still have to keep going. The future is what drives you. I'm not interested in looking over my shoulder."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
food + drinkFrom Mediterranean Tomato Tart to Raw Caramel Peanut Pie
Extras
Boys to men: there’s nothing wrong with traditional ‘manly’ things, until masculinity is used to exclude people
indybest13 best grooming essentials
Arts and Entertainment
Armstrong, left, and Bain's writing credits include Peep Show, Fresh Meat, and The Old Guys
TVThe pair have presented their view of 21st-century foibles in shows such as Peep Show and Fresh Meat
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch attends the London premiere of his new film The Imitation Game
people He's not as smart as his characters
Life and Style
healthMovember isn't about a moustache trend, it saves lives
Arts and Entertainment
Hand out press photograph/film still from the movie Mad Max Fury Road (Downloaded from the Warner Bro's media site/Jasin Boland/© 2014 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)
films'You have to try everything and it’s all a process of elimination, but ultimately you find your path'
Arts and Entertainment
Keys to success: Andrew and Julian Lloyd Webber
arts + entsMrs Bach had too many kids to write the great man's music, says Julian Lloyd Webber
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Mobile Developer (.NET / C# / Jason / Jquery / SOA)

£40000 - £65000 per annum + bonus + benefits + OT: Ampersand Consulting LLP: M...

Humanities Teacher - Greater Manchester

£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: The JobAt ...

Design Technology Teacher

£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: Calling al...

Foundation Teacher

£100 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: EYFS Teachers - East Essex...

Day In a Page

Bryan Adams' heartstopping images of wounded British soldiers to go on show at Somerset House

Bryan Adams' images of wounded soldiers

Taken over the course of four years, Adams' portraits are an astonishing document of the aftermath of war
The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities