As a little boy, Hughie Morrison received good advice from the late Sir Henry Cecil.
& # 39; Learn about life before you think about training & # 39 ;, the legendary trainer told the teenager. They proved wise words and Morrison reflected this week when he was thinking about the possibility of winning the £ 1.5 million Investec Derby, a race that was won four times by Cecil.
If Morrison, 58, who worked for a healthcare group and a lighting company before he started training with 37, can win the 240th run of the historic race with Oisin Murphy-ridden Telecaster, Cecil's advice will be a neat symmetry to have.
Trainer Hughie Morrison says he is in the minority at Investec Derby in the afternoon
They also helped shape Morrison to cope with everything that was thrown at him.
Two years ago there seemed to be a good chance that Morrison would not be in a position to saddle a runner somewhere, let alone in the Derby.
When his temperate mare Our Little Sister tested positive for a forbidden anabolic steroid in Wolverhampton in January 2017, he may have been confronted with a minimum ban of two years.
But Morrison fought to clear his name, he passionately claimed to be the victim of a & # 39; malicious plot & # 39 ;, a scenario supported by the seemingly motion-free, evidence-free drug use of a poor performer in a case without roller coaster patterns .
An independent BHA disciplinary panel Morrison finally concluded the & # 39; on balance, Mr. Morrison was innocent of any involvement & # 39; because a fine of £ 1,000 was imposed on him.
Ironically, two years later news about the case came to the fore that Telecaster won the Dante Stakes to come forward when the British top Derby hopes.
Morrison said: & # 39; It was very traumatic that I spent my entire life trying to be honest and honest to be accused of something that had absolutely nothing to do with us.
& # 39; It was a bit like someone's character. I was upset and will always stay that way. & # 39;
Morrison thinks fighting his case costs him £ 150,000 and also horses. His stables in Berkshire contain 70 horses, but are no longer full.
They also could never contain a horse like Telecaster, the son of the 2008 Derby winner New Approach who was sent to Morrison when he could not reach his reserve for the 2017 yearling sale.
Morrison had educated the mother of Telecaster, 2012 Oaks-runner Shirocco Star, and soon the new recruit saw the family talent inherited.
But the foal did not make the song until March, when it was second in Bangkok, another big heap today, at Doncaster.
Over the past two weeks, the owners of Morrison and Telecaster have had to debate paying the £ 85,000 additional Derby contribution for a foal whose third career start at the Dante Stakes in York took place just 16 days ago.
It is a calculated risk and a somewhat frustrating decision, given the then uneducated Telecaster, a yearling Derby entry, had been squatted during the decaying stage in March when it was thought he was too immature to be an Epsom contender . If he had been left there, he would cost £ 7,860 to make him run.
So Morrison was certain that at Epsom he would not be obliged to make plans this afternoon to attend his cousin's wedding in Stockholm.
Morrison, who chose to run Telecaster today after discussions with Mark Weinfeld, head of his owners Castle Down Racing and MD of his Meon Valley Stud breeders, said: “We always thought he was a seriously nice horse and we had a long debate before it was initially He pulled him out of the Derby in March.
& # 39; The moment of the light bulb was Doncaster. I thought he would run very well and we had also heard that Bangkok scored very high.
& # 39; Oisin then pressed the button and taught him to be a racehorse in his second race at Windsor. He is an intelligent horse. He picks things up quickly. & # 39;
Morrison, who spent two years as assistant coach Paul Cole, got the race bug from his father James, the long-serving MP for Devises.
He owned and bred two Oaks winners – Juliette Marny (1975) and Scintillate (1979) – and also bred the winner of the St. Leger winner Julio Mariner.
Morrison, who trained for the queen and the duchess of Cambridge's parents, Mike and Carole Middleton, has a house commissioner who was responsible for a Boris Johnson during his schooling in Eton for a short time.
Given that background, it might seem strange to throw him in the role of underdog, but with the power of Aidan O & Brien & # 39; s stole responsible for seven of the Derby 13 riders, in a sporting sense this afternoon, that is what Morrison is.
The trainer joked: & I am a supporter from Southampton and it looks a bit like the five-team team from Southampton taking the first eleven from Manchester City. & # 39;
The kind of challenge Cecil would have loved.
Trainer Hughie Morrison says that he is in a minority with Investec Derby on Saturday afternoon, but not as well as he saddles up the leading hope of Telecaster trained by Great Britain.
The winner of Dante Stakes in York, ravaged by Oisin Murphy, faces the sevenfold challenge of the Aidan O & Brien stable.
Morrison said: & # 39; I'm a Southampton fan and it looks a bit like Southampton's five-man team taking the first XI from Manchester City. & # 39;
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