Team Ditcheat's superb team of riders
At Ditcheat we have a superb team of jockeys led by Sam Twiston-Davies, Nick Scholfield and Sean Bowen, backed up by some up-and-coming conditionals and top notch amateur, Will Biddick
Sam heads up our jockey team. With over 450 winners to his name including six Grade One winners and four Cheltenham Festival winners he is already established as one of the best jockeys riding today. Originally from Naunton in Gloucestershire Sam is the son of Gold Cup winning trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies with whom he has achieved some notable career highs. Sam broke on to the scene as an amateur when landing the Cheltenham Foxhunters aboard Baby Run in 2010 before turning professional at the end of that season.
A Conditional Jockey’s title quickly followed, in a season that saw him claim the prestigious Paddy Power Gold Cup and the Becher Chase along the way. More recently Sam has played a key role in some memorable victories for Team Ditcheat. He recorded his first winner for us at Wetherby in November 2013 shortly before steering the legendary Tidal Bay to victory in the Grade Two West Yorkshire Hurdle on the same card. Sam rode over 100 winners in one season for the first time in the 2013/14 season and recorded his first success as number one jockey at Manor Farm Stables aboard Pressies Girl in May 2014.
Nick is a very familiar face at Manor Farm Stables having started out here as an amateur. He graduated from the point-to-point ranks having finished national champion novice rider early on in his career and went on to secure the amateur riders championship at the end of the 2007/08 season.
Since then Nick has gone on to ride over 350 winners under rules including two Cheltenham Festival winners and two Grade One winners. Nick has also had many memorable days in the saddle for us. He has won the Grade Two Cotswold Chase on Taranis, the Grade three Newbury Handicap Chase on Natal and New Little Bric and the Badger Ales Trophy on Cornish Sett. More recently Nick won five Grade Two races for the stable during the 2013/14 season and claimed the stable’s 100th Grade One winner in the 2014/15 season. Nick rides out in Ditcheat one morning a week and is also a regular jockey for Jeremy Scott, Kim Bailey and Andy Turnell.
Sean capped a brilliant first season as a conditional jockey by winning the bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown on Just A Par on the final day of the campaign for two of the yard’s long standing owners Paul Barber and Graham Roach.
Sean was also crowned champion conditional at 17 in April 2015 with 51 winners despite missing around six weeks with injury mid season. Further highlights included a treble at Chepstow on Welsh Grand National day and another notable treble at Haydock.
He first made his name as a fiercely competitive, mustard-keen rider on the pony racing circuit.
2015/16 was the first season Harry spent at Manor Farm Stables and he made quite an impression. Within months of arriving he recorded his debut Cheltenham victory aboard Old Guard, a month later winning the Grade 3 Greatwood Hurdle aboard the same charge.
He reached 30 winners in his breakthrough season finishing second in the conditional jockeys title and winning the hands and heels training series.
Harry is a focused, driven young man who allows the horse to run underneath him and he has already had some great results on the big days coping well with the pressure of a big race.
His 3lb claim is a valuable advantage and he is a rider that has already shown he can deliver on the big stage. A young talent who will hopefully progress and develop under our care at Ditcheat.
Son of Matt Sheppard the Eastnor-based National Hunt trainer, Stan joined us after leaving school when just 16 years old. He is now in his third year at Manor Farm Stables and having ridden 18 winners as an amateur in the 2015/16 season, he has made the step up to the professional ranks.
Massively improved over the last few years Stan is a hard worker who does a fantastic job on the tricky Marracudja everyday at home. Last season’s highlights included finishing runner up in the National amateur title, riding 19 winners between the flags and winning on Captain Buck’s at Taunton for Paul.
Keen to always improve his riding technique Stan, with luck, will do well over the next couple of seasons as his claim remains a valuable asset to us.
Jack joined Team Ditcheat at the end of August 2013. Originally graduating from the pony racing and point-to-point circuits, Jack won the 2012/13 Conditonal Jockey’s training series and the 2013/14 Conditional Jockey’s Hands and Heels series including the final aboard our own Silsol. Jack has had notable successes to include five Saturday winners shown on Channel 4, winning the Welsh Champion Hurdle on his old friend Silsol and culminating last season with winning the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockey’s hurdle at the Festival on Ibis Du Rheu. This season he and Silsol have got together again to win the Grade 2 bet365 Hurdle at Wetherby.
Jordan gained valuable experience riding on the flat before joining the team as a conditional jockey in 2015. The grandson of Welsh trainer Bernard Llewellyn, he was champion amateur flat jockey in 2014 and will continue to ride on the flat while he is light enough, though he is keen to advance his career over jumps.
Champion point-to-point rider for the past five seasons, Will Biddick is very quickly becoming the most formidable name in the pointing field.
In the 2014/15 season he smashed the record number of winners for a season which stood at 56 adding another 12 to that total posting a massive tally of 68, a record he is busy trying to beat once again.
The son of a Cornish farmer will spent some time as a conditional jockey with Venetia Williams before turning back amateur, with his weight posing a problem in the professional ranks.
Not only does he regularly provide an education for our young horses in the pointing field he spends time breaking in horses and getting to know head strong or troublesome youngsters.
A brilliant asset to our team of jockeys, Will is a fun loving hard working character who is a popular guy in and around the yard.
Like many of our other young men with licenses in the yard, Lorcan left school after completing his GCSE’s and has quickly made a good impression within the yard.
Pony racing was his way into the sport and a friendship with Sean Bowen encouraged him to move from his native Wales to learn his craft here at Manor Farm Stables. A talented hard working young man who rides point to pointing and will get his chance for us under rules as the season develops.