Inside Story

We bought a racehorse after a night out – here’s how it won the Ascot of the North against all odds

The story of Showtime, the unlikeliest horse to ever win a big race, is a sporting thriller about winning against the odds – but it’s also an inspiring tale of male friendship, love and loss now captured in a TV documentary. Zoë Beaty catches up with the group of friends to discover how they did the unthinkable…

Monday 22 April 2024 17:04 BST
Show pony: the gang from Darlington with their prize-winning stallion
Show pony: the gang from Darlington with their prize-winning stallion (Echovelvet Productions)

Anth Freeman had been thinking about popping the question for some time. In the years before this particular night in 2020, he’d been dropping hints, letting the idea settle in a bit. His mates hadn’t been keen on his “pestering”, as he puts it – but at the opportune moment “when we were about six or seven pints in” down at their local pub in Darlington, Anth asked again. “This time it started to get a bit more traction,” he explains.

The next day, they decided to buy a racehorse.

Who has one too many and decides to buy a horse? The stars of ITV’s new hit documentary, It’s Showtime, a show about an unlikely group of eight lads and an unlikelier stallion chancing their way on the racetrack – and winning.

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