As one National Hunt season came to an end at Punchestown a new season began in it’s wake. It has been a great debut season for Realta Horse Racing Club, one that has seen photo finishes, Winners Enclosure’s, trips across the Irish Sea and a climax of going to Punchestown, the home of National Hunt racing in Ireland with our very first horse Danielle’s Journey going off towards the top of the market in the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders Association Premier Fillies Bumper.
With a modest sum of money our Club started with a clear vision of where we’re going and an ambition to grow to be the best in the business at what we do – National Hunt horse racing syndicates. Our opinion was that to be the best you have to surround yourself with the best so we approached the team at Crawford Bros Racing headed by Stuart and luckily they agreed to take our project onboard. From this point our trainer introduced us to breeder Liz Hamilton who we leased our first horse from and so the story of Realta Horse Racing Club began.
Our journey to the racecourse was encouraged with the help of the team at Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) and Irish Thoroughbred Marketing (ITM) who walked us through the set-up process and advised along the way. From that point we worked on building our digital presence through our old website and Social Media to build our profile and attract enquiries. Realta, the Irish word for star was chosen to be our Club name and we based our silks on the night sky with a white star in the hope we can find a horse (or horses) that can bring us to the highest echelons of racing, the sport we love.
Realta wanted to create something new, something different from what was then on offer to get others involved at grass roots level of racehorse ownership and get people going racing. The founding members of the Club are racegoers who regularly attend race meetings in Ireland, north and south and some of the major meetings across the water. Realta were aided in gaining new members by our two local racecourses, Down Royal and Downpatrick who allowed us space in their racecards to reach the racing public and gain interest. Through these mediums we filled our first syndicate, a Presenting filly now called Danielle’s Journey who the Brain Tumour Charity has a five percent sake of prize money.
On debut at Down Royal Danielle’s Journey was only just denied by a short head on the day of the Grade 1 JNwine Chase, then went to Catterick and came home to make it third time lucky, again at Down Royal in the Tullyraine Equine Clinic NH Flat Race on St Patrick’s Day. To continue our progress our second horse came into training in September 2014, a Golan filly ex Another Sparkle to be called A Touch Of Sparkle from the same breeder who owns Danielle’s Journey. It is our hope that she can make her first appearance early this season then go chasing as her career progresses. This mare is related to several winners including Sword of Destiny and Wounded Warrior.
It has been a whirlwind eighteen months from we began but one that we have enjoyed every step of the way. We would like to thank Crawford Bros Racing our trainer, Liz Hamilton our breeder, Margie McLoone of The Irish Field, Dean and Rory of RacingFM for allowing us air time on the UK & Ireland’s free to air horse racing commentary radio station, Aidan McGarry of ITM and local business Mourne Seafood and Murphy’s Butchers. The websites and Social Media platforms of #Racehour and #RaceCaller we offer our gratitude to for promoting us throughout the year.
The management of Realta Horse Racing give a very special thank you to the most important people in our club, our members and shareowners who without we would have nothing. It is our members who keep our horses in training through regular payments. The experience of our first horse is the cornerstone of how we want to build the success of what we will achieve in times to come. Again a special thank you to those individuals involved who span northern and southern Ireland, north Wales, Derbyshire and Japan.
With the benefit of hindsight and feedback from our members we plan to continue our growth and be the best racing club available. Our second season kicked off with the re-launch of our new website and with the news that Danielle’s Journey will start her hurdling career at Limerick Racecourse on Sunday 17th of May 2015. Realta have safely come through our maiden season and plan to jump forward to new levels. Visit www.realtahorseracing.com to find out more.