Footballer Michael Owen, 27, has set up a racing stable. The first 25 horses moved into Manor House Stables in Cheshire 10 days ago and have been put into training with resident trainer Nicky Vaughan.
Manor Farm is a 160 acre former dairy farm and following an extensive refurbishment programme, now boasts stabling for up to 25 horses and a seven furlong gallops. A planning application has been submitted for a further 50 stables and an extended gallops.
“The intention is to train horses for other people and sell them on,” said Steven Smith, managing director of Manor House Stables.
Owen himself owns nine horses at present but is not actively involved in training.
“He can’t take an active role due to his commitments to Newcastle United Football Club,” Smith explained. “But the business will be built up for him to take more of an interest in later on.”
Michael Owen said: “This is fulfilling one of my passions in life and is something I hope will build up over the next 20 or 30 years into a substantial and successful training yard.”
Owen and his wife, Louise, have a longstanding interest in horses. Louise is a patron of the Thoroughbred Rehabilitation Centre which cares for horses once their racing days are over. Owen bought his first racehorse, Treble Heights, after winning the League Cup, FA Cup and UEFA Cup treble with Liverpool and it won a number of listed races.
Treble Heights is now installed at Manor Farm with her third foal.