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Green with envy: is this the most beautiful setting to train horses?

The horses stabled at Welsh National-winning trainer Christian Williams’ yard enjoy morning exercise with a scenic backdrop, that can rival many of the gallops within the racing world.

Based in Ogmore-by-Sea, Wales, the racehorse trainer canters his horses through the stunning Welsh valleys as part of their fitness regime.

Christian’s yard is on the same farm where he grew up in south Wales and a barn has been converted to house nearly 30 stables. The yard boasts a picturesque location with the backdrop including ruins of a 12th-Century Grade I castle. The former jump jockey trained Potters Corner to success in the 2019 Welsh Grand National at Chepstow.

The horses in his care benefit from the undulating countryside and the nearby sea.

In the morning, the string of horses head alongside the River Ewenny towards the coastline for a workout. The dunes on the beach at Ogmore-by-Sea provide useful inclines for the equine athletes to complete their hillwork, in addition to the benefit of the Welsh valleys. The horses also gallop on the beach itself – reminiscent of Grand National hero Red Rum, who was also trained on a beach.

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After a beach gallop Christian’s string cool off with a paddle in the North Atlantic Ocean.

The waters of the River Ewenny provide valuable hydrotherapy for the horses, too. At the start and end of every ride, the horses go through the river. Any of them with a history of leg trouble – such as stablestar Potters Corner – benefit from standing in the cold water.

Christian does things slightly differently to his National Hunt counterparts in that most of his horses live out 24/7, with rugs on — they are turned out in groups of eight whatever the weather.

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