A Horse, A Horse, My Kingdom For A Horse.

So wrote a Mr William Shakespeare, dear reader, whilst giving voice to Richard III, in the play of the same title. The king was lamenting at the battle of Bosworth Field where, ultimately, he was to lose his life and the lineage to the throne, usurped as he was by Richmond, latterly Henry VII.

As lead-in's to a post go, that was tenuous, I grant you. But I was feeling somewhat literary this morning, so thought I'd roll with it anyway!

My point in all this Elizabethan bluster? The subject of a horse, a horse, a Geegeez geegee.

In the poll top right of this page, enough of you expressed a desire to know a bit more, so I've spoken to Julia Feilden, my trainer, and she has given me a feel for what can be done. The story goes like this:

To train, feed, stable, shoe, administer medical attention, transport, hire jockeys and enter into races costs a fixed fee of £15,000 for a year.

This of course is after we've bought the animal! If we assumed a 'transfer fund' of £10,000 to secure our horse, then that would make the total £25,000 for the year. (If the horse cost less, we'd leave the difference in the 'kitty' for the end of year divvy up of monies).

The horse would be either sent to the sales at the end of the year, or we could decide to keep it for another year, with the ongoing associated costs.

There would be an equal division of all prize money amongst 'shareholders', and an equal division of the sales price (less taxes, etc) at the end of the ownership period.

Julia tells me that the best way to get a horse is to claim one, but there are also July sales coming up at Newmarket if we can move fast enough (I suspect we won't be able to but there are some nice animals there which we could potentially afford, depending on how the auction goes).

We'd be looking to buy a moderate animal (flat rating around 60 odd), that could be either a dual purpose horse or would run on the all weather as well as turf.

As well as a share in the horse, Geegeez Syndicate membership would also provide:

4 weeks' free access to Geegeez Gold

- Stable visits to Julia's Harraton Stables in Exning, next to Newmarket

- A 'Hoofbeats Tour' day, where we go round Newmarket with a tour guide

- Owners' badges for race days for syndicate members (guests will receive a subsidised ticket price)

- Monthly stable updates (Julia has around 20 horses in training)

- Free or subsidised access to some Geegeez racing services

So, my thinking is this:

A syndicate of 50 people, each paying a once off £500, or £100 a month for 6 months. That is, it is cheaper to pay once off.

The horse will run in the name and colours of Geegeez.co.uk. This is "what's in it for me" if you like. I will pay for and own a 'golden' share, which grants me just the single special privilege of naming the syndicate and choosing the colours.

My share costs the same and has the same division of prize / sale money as any other. It just allows me to publicise Geegeez.co.uk. I hope you agree that this is fair for the work involved in pulling it together.

For now, please write a comment below, with an expression of interest or questions or any other thoughts.

[It may be that what is a cracking idea doesn't happen, due to the cost / numbers etc, but let's have a debate]

If there was enough interest, we could be up and running within six weeks and, if we'd claimed a horse, he'd be race fit and ready to run.

Let me know what you think!


4 weeks' free access to Geegeez Gold
89 replies
  1. John says:

    Very good ! Recently 1/4 share in a 2yrO out of USA Sire Smoke Glacken was offered for $875 / share renewable e/6mos. Don’t forget the cost of insurance.

  2. Charles says:

    very much interested in your syndicate proposal. i would be grateful if you could let me know of any further developments.


  3. Neil Timms says:

    Something I’ve been thinking of for a while and at around five hundred pounds I’m in

    I’d prefer a flat/all weather horse as I I’d dislike the possibility of it being injured

  4. Paul Dufeu says:

    Nice idea, Matt. I’m interested, but not at £500. I think I’d be very keen if it was 125 people paying £200 each. I know it means more admin for you, but it spreads the risk a lot more. Cheers, Paul.

  5. gerry says:

    a good idea but remember a horse is the only animal that bites the hand that feeds it. for all that im up for it

  6. Keri Libretto says:

    25th June
    Sounds like a great concept. Would certainly be very interested.

  7. david w says:

    sounds reasonable enough to me matt. keep us posted on further developments.

  8. Dave H says:

    hi matt, syndication is a good way of getting into ownership, but
    dont forget there are other costs to think about, ie vets bill, transport to races(when i had a horse 5 years ago it was 75 pence per mile) so iwould lok at more than 15,000 per year
    regards, Dave

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Dave

      Those costs are included in the price. I’ve had bits of horse with Julia for nine years, so she looks after me (and those who are with me)… 🙂


  9. oliver mann says:


    Very Very keen. Am already a member of Elite Racing Club so know how how much pleasure is to be derived from hearing of “our” horses training experiences (good & bad), stable visits (so very enlightening) and, of course, following/watching their exploits on the course. Julie trians 2/3 horses for Elite and does very well with them so would be a very willing member.

    Best of luck


    Oliver Mann

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Oliver

      I think you may be confusing Julia Feilden (my trainer) with Julie Camacho (Elite Racing Club trainer).

      Nevertheless, you’d be a very welcome participant, of course.


  10. Eddie Lloyd says:

    Hi Matt and all other readers,

    I’m very interested and will be up for the ride (not literally as I’m not a jockey!!). I think the £500 investment is realistic and will look forward to more info, i.e transfer of money (paypal?) and would we recieve proof of onwership (the mrs would require this for her/ours accounts!!

    Anyway, count me in and I’ll take this oppurtunity to congratulate you on what I believe is the best blog out there!

    Best wishes,


  11. mattgiffin says:

    not sure if your aware but alot of owners are offering you to take a horse and you pay the fees for that season and take the winnings for that season……….

  12. oliver mann says:


    Yes…..of course…….When I get up in the morning I really must try harder to actually “wake” up ! Have had some 5 hours to do just that and still have not managed it !


  13. Andy says:

    Great ide and very exciting for a novice like me who was bought up by my father watching horse racing(still do). What a great opportunity for a humble fellow to have a share in a horse. The monthly scheme will help me Thanks

  14. Brian says:

    Yes would say ‘lease’ a really good racehorse for the remainder of the season is the way to go, its far cheaper and lots of trainers have horses that need ‘sponsered’, I have owned outright and had shares and leased, and the best way is ‘leased’ as its the cheapest if you pick a nice animal lots of fun as well………IMO !!

  15. tom smith says:

    hi matt, never owned part of a horse before but would be interested Regards Tom

  16. Michael says:

    Could be well up for it, £500 seems reasonable , keep me posted on developments, 5 or 600 is my limit though.

  17. Eamon Roberts says:

    Hi Matt,

    Sounds like a great idea and I’d definitely be interested. At £500 I think that’s reasonable for a bit of fun/investment. Just getting my money back at the end of the year would be good enough for me to enjoy watching it race a few races. How many times do you think it would race (I appreciate that that’s dependent on a no. of factors but at a rough guess, what do you think?).


    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Eamon

      As you rightly say, it’s very hard to predict how many times it’ll run etc.

      Basically, as we all know, horses are all different. We’d ideally look to get a horse that was sound and could run regularly but had not already been over-raced. Alas, pretty much every other syndicate wants a horse like this too, which means we have to compete with these guys.

      Ultimately, we are somewhat beholden to luck, but we can take some of the guesswork out by claiming a horse. Although there isn’t the ‘excitement’ of an unknown quantity, the reality is that it is far less of a gamble that way. Buying an unraced animal is a fairly good way of buying a donkey, usually.

      I’m much more interested in getting a horse that we know will run regularly for us, and that we know can win in his grade (which might only be 0-65 handicaps). That way, we can occasionally have a good old punt on the beast, and all cheer it home!

      Finally, I should say that getting all of your money back at the end of the year would be a very good result. It is much more likely that you will get some of your money back at the end of the year. As someone who’s had shares in horses for nearly a decade, I can tell you that they’re fantastic fun to be involved with but lousy investments! If you’re looking for something to make you money, this is unlikely to be that.

      But if you’re looking for some good fun, meeting a few other geegeez people along the way (and me of course!), then this is the ticket.


  18. Maurice says:

    Not even considering what some people will dump £500 on, it seems not a lot for hobby money!

  19. Michael B says:

    good idea if I had the cash but off sick and will have to change my job as can’t do it any more all the best with it though

  20. David Bowles says:

    Still interested at this point depending on No of members.

    The sales approach sounds exiting as you probably stand a better chance of finding the one horse that will succeed but relies more on the horses pedigree to dictacte the auction price

    Unfortunately the claiming race avenue means that to some extent the horses ability is known and the only way to improve it is to change its training regime , distance or track type etc

  21. Darrin says:

    Hi Matt

    I would be interested as well. Hopefully you will get the numbers and the project can proceed.

    Can we call the horse “faded rapidly” as that is the comment I see most about horses I back!

    Good luck

  22. Chris says:

    Sounds a great idea. Alternatively, if £500 was too much, have 100 shares at £250 and those who wish to spend £500 can own 2 shares.

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Sunil

      Of course UK non-residents may be involved. The only slight problem is that some of the benefits of membership may be lost, due to inability to attend races etc.


  23. kevin says:

    if you think you will be getting 500+ back you are living in dream world!you would be lucky to get anything back at all.so a lower price and more people involved would be the way for me.and just try to win something when the horse runs.

    • Matt Bisogno says:


      Please see my previous reply regarding what is the likely return. I have already ‘managed expectations’ around that.

      I am extremely loathe to open to more people, for the simple reasons that a) it would create a lot more administration, and b) I wouldn’t be able to guarantee people a spot at the track on racedays.

      Please remember we’re talking about owning a horse here, which alas costs a lot of money.


  24. Steve Uzzell says:

    I’m in Matt and I’d like to add my vote for a name “Never Dangerous” seems to be applied to most of the horses I back with a few exceptions.


  25. Arthur Judge says:

    Sounds like a great idea Matt, have been following your blog for some time now, its good to deal with someone whos not pushy on sales has a great working knowledge of the game and is honest.

    Count me in on this

  26. Luckylennox says:

    Unfortunately Matt, there are always some people who want something for nothing. Why not 25,000 people at £1 a go, then we can all own a horseshoe ?
    I don’t think I would be able to fund £500 at the moment purely due to home economies, but I’ll try to find the £100 a month if I can, and I will also understand that I might get next to nothing back at the end, so I’ll treat it as a betting loss of £25 a week – which happens regularly anyway.
    Best of luck with the venture. Keep me informed or post the info on the blog, and I’ll see what I can do to join you.

  27. Dave says:

    Good idea,
    Put me down on the shortlist.

    “Also ran” applies to most horses I back, so I think that would be Spiffingly good name!

  28. Gareth Robinson says:

    Hi Matt,

    I think I’d be interested as the price sound reasonable. Where do you think you will most likely run the beast? I live near Chepstow so would be good to know if it’s likely to run this side of the country for ease of spectating

    All the best and good luck


    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Gaz

      Julia is based in Newmarket so many of her horses run ‘that side’ of the country. Having said that, Night Orbit may very well run at Worcester next Wednesday, assuming the ground is not too fast, and Julia’s at Warwick today with Bavarica, so I can’t say there won’t be opportunities elsewhere.

      Regarding names, as many people have made suggestions, if we claim a horse it will already be named, and we’ll be obliged to retain that.


  29. John Evans says:

    Goodafternoon Matt,
    Would you count me in and keep me posted.
    John Evans.

  30. Bjarne says:

    Hi Matt
    Count me in. Even the expenses for me will be much higher when I have to travel from Denmark to UK. Where is Newmarket located?


  31. Duncan says:


    Sounds like fun,
    Keep me posted, and unless I’m missunderstanding, any return surely comes from knowing when it’s actually trying to win a race not just having a run out?


    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Thanks Bjarne – assuming you weren’t joking, Newmarket is on the side of England that is closer by boat to you guys 😉

      Duncan – you’re not misunderstanding. 🙂


  32. geoff says:

    great idea keep me informed, that sounds like a good name if we dont claim “keep me informed”.


  33. Jon says:

    It seems a reasonable enough price, but unfortunately beyond my means presently. Very best of luck with the project.

    Jon D.

  34. Tom Wooldridge says:

    I’m interested in your GeeGeez syndicate proposal.

    As part-owner of Smarties Party, I can thoroughly recommend Chris Thornton as a trainer who would do a great job for you. Owners are encouraged to visit the yard to see their horses and are warmly welcomed when they do.

    Based in Middleham, he has trained over 600 winners (NH & Flat) and is as honest and genuine as the day is long, a true gentleman.

  35. colin hetterley says:

    Would certainly be interested in the £100.00 a month option,please keep me posted,thanks Phil

  36. Bill says:

    Great idea Matt.

    Count me in.

    I live 5 mins from the Rowley Mile and about 15 minutes from Julias yard in Exning.

  37. bill says:

    great idea matt,but i agree with the guy who wants more people involved for a lesser cost,i,m saying this as i could,nt come up with the 500 readies.

  38. Phil Eadie says:

    Lets get it sorted Matt. I am in, infact I suggested this idea to you some months ago.
    I dont think it matters what discipline the horse runs in, in answer to some of the comments above, horses do get injured on the flat as well as hurdles.
    At the figures you suggest definately count me in.

  39. mark says:

    i love the idea of being a racehorse owner but i would not be able to pay ther whole lot off in one go but count me in asa im sure i coul afford £100 month, mark gaffney

  40. Lee says:


    I’m definitely interested, and look forward to any further news and developments.


  41. Phil Eadie says:

    Youve got me going now Matt.
    Great idea, the interest is obviously there, from the above you will almost certainly receive the required funding, so post payment details soon as possible and lets go racing.
    The £500 is an investment, which will show a return, if the trainer is on the ball and we punt the right races.
    Its all about information which is what we would be buying into as well as the nag its self.
    I mean, even Rapid city has had its good days, just joking.

  42. joe hale says:

    Very interested,
    always wanted to get involved with horse ownership, but the costs always seemed prohibitive.
    this sounds a good opportunity to get started at a reasonable price. would need to take the monthly option though.
    please keep me informed on progress.

  43. joe hale says:

    great idea & very interested. always thought horse ownership would be too costly. this sounds reasonable for a newbie to get involved in.
    would need to take the monthly option though.
    please keep me informed on progress. cheers

  44. donkers says:

    Hi Matt,

    This sounds like fun! I think £500 is reasonable. Realistically the horse would have to win more prize money than a modest handicapper would normally do to get our money back that way, so would work on the worst case scenario basis of zero financial return from prize money. We’d have to pick a proper dodgepot though if it had several runs in the right types of races and wasn’t placed once, but I trust your judgment to find us a tidy beast and a real trier (or non-trier when needs must as regards handicapping!!)


    However, regardless of that the entertainment value, the chance to go to a meeting and watch ‘our’ horse together, visit the stables, know when it has a serious chance of winning and when it hasn’t etc. has got to be value for money from a ‘hobby’ point of view. I’d like a share please!

  45. Steve says:

    Hi Matt

    This seems a fantastic idea, however, my current finances won’t allow me to opt in.

    Good luck with it if you get this up and running, and I would certainly be interested in the future if this idea would pop up again.


  46. Toby says:

    Hi Matt, – a bit late with the post, but yes, I’d be insterested in the syndicate

Comments are closed.