Frost and Goldsworthy take different paths

Kevin Frost - winding up

Kevin Frost - winding up

At the age of 51, Kevin Frost and Keith Goldsworthy are taking opposing views about life as a racehorse trainer. While Frost is starting out, Goldsworthy appears on the verge of packing it in.

Frost has started training at a yard called The Old Cowshed at Alcester, just a couple of miles down the road from another first season trainer, Dan Skelton. Frost is a former assistant trainer to both Ian Williams and Alan Swinbank, and told the Racing Post, “I was with Ian for five years and Alan for three. I had a few owners saying, ‘Why don’t you have a go on your own, we’ll send you a horse’, so when the opportunity arose I decided to take it.”

He had his first runner at Exeter yesterday, where Light The World didn’t live up to his name, trailing in last of the 11 runners in a handicap hurdle. Mind you, the move to a new stable seems to have done the horse good as he at least raced. Frost said, “Light The World came out of Richard Phillips’ yard with a bit of a bad reputation as he refused to race, but the owner sent him here and he’s done nothing wrong.” At the end of 2012 even Tony McCoy could not galvanise him into action at Uttoxeter.

Frost starts off with ten of his 16 boxes occupied, and says he is happy to start small. “We make sure the horses get at least five hours a day out of their boxes, which is easier to do when you are a small yard. We aim to do a good job with what we’ve got.”

K Goldsworthy - winding down

K Goldsworthy - winding down

Meanwhile, the increasing number of Welsh trainers has led Keith Goldsworthy to decide not to renew his licence next February after ten years in the job. He’s down to just four horses out in Westernmost Pembrokeshire, and with so few it’s no surprise that he can no longer make the game pay. He said, “The economics of the yard are no longer viable. I can’t get the support, and there are too many licences in Wales I think. When I started there was only Peter Bowen but now there are plenty of trainers and it’s a small pool – there aren’t enough fish to go round.”

The last few winters proved difficult. 2010 got off to an awful start when his prolific winner Hold ‘Em was fatally injured in a mass pile up in a Cheltenham chase. In the last two winters a virus limited his operations, and this year he hasn’t had a runner since June. His six runners on the flat yielded one fourth placed finish and £144.31. Things were a little better over the jumps: 15 runners, two seconds, a third and a fourth; £2,351.61. It’s hardly a living wage.

Goldsworthy has yet to decide what he’ll do after he hands in his licence. I don’t imagine he’ll want to resume the skip hire business he had ten years ago, so it might be a case of settling down on the farm.

Good luck to both of them.