The TRM Trainer of the Quarter foes to Robert Cowell for making history by sending out his quirky inmate Kingsgate Native to win the Temple Stakes for the second time on Saturday 25th May, making him only the second horse to do so.
Kingsgate Native had previously spent time with John Best and Sir Michael Stoute but when he proved frustratingly infertile while standing at Cheveley Park Stud, a change of scenery was sought and he arrived at Cowell’s Bittisham Heath Stud in June 2012 to see whether his interest in racing could be resurrected. Cowell had only one career in mind when leaving school in Norfolk heading straight to Gavin Pritchard-Gordon’s yard, where as a jockey he promptly landed his first win at Brighton on his second ride.
From here he moved to David ‘the Duke’ Nicholson, where he gained invaluable experience during the days of Charter Party and Waterloo Bay. Cowell then crossed the Channel to become assistant trainer to John Hammond for two seasons. It was while riding as an amateur for Hammond – and not being fluent in the local language – that he found himself heading full-pelt towards the stall handlers and, not being able to make it clear he needed their assistance to hold the horse, shot straight past them and ended up in the nearby river. Unhurt, horse and jockey were rescued downstream and went on to win their race that day.