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Horses in Training



Whatcombe Racing Stables is one of the largest and oldest training centres in the UK and is set in 450 acres, boasting 5 sets of gallops (three grass and two all weather surfaces), an equine swimming pool and an indoor school.


Our Team

Paul Cole - TrainerPaul is one of Britain’s most successful trainers, responsible for winning high performance races, Classic races, Group races and Handicaps.

Paul was Champion Trainer in England 1991 and has won the Champion European Trainers 4 times and holds European record for the most prize money won with one horse, Snurge.

Royal Ascot is one of Whatcombe’s favourite meetings, having had four winners in one week. Paul is one of the top trainers on the list for the most winners at the meeting having won the Coventry Stakes, Jersey Stakes, Chesham Stakes, Windsor Castle Stakes, Norfolk Stakes, Hardwicke Stakes, Wokingham Stakes, Queen Mary Ascot Stakes and the Queen Alexandra Stakes.


Oliver Cole - Assistant Trainer: Oliver is our Assistant Trainer here at Whatcombe. After leaving the Royal Agricultural College in Cirencester, Oliver spent 6 months in Kentucky completing an equine course. He then went on to complete 18 months stud experience at Coolmore in Ireland and Australia and then to France to be assistant for Mr J. C. Rouget.

Before joining the Whatcombe team he worked in pedigree analysis at James Underwood’s in London. He rides out regularly on his hack, Cornelius who was a Group 2 winner for the team.

Alastair Lidderdale  - Assistant Trainer.


Duilio Da Silva - Head Lad: Duilio started as our Head Lad in 2012, rejoining the company after holding his Apprentice licence here a few years ago. Duilio moved back to Whatcombe having decided he wanted more of a challenge. He lives here with his wife Thais, who works for Mrs Cole. Duilio rides out every morning and still runs his owns motorbike business in Brazil!

Helen Bridges - Racing Secretary: Helen has recently moved to Whatcombe after spending 6 years working within the racing industry. She is in charge of the running of the office and is also a qualified equine sports massage therapist.


Christine Lycett-Still - Bookkeeper: Christine joined us in August 2012. She run her own business providing business support. Here at Whatcombe Christine deals with the accounts. She lives in Newbury with her husband Bob and her many animals.


Philip Godden - Gallop Man: Phillip has been here since 2002 and looks after the day to day running of the estate including the hedges/gallops and grasslands. Previously Phillip was in the building trade, he has a farming background and continues to help out on the family farm at the weekends.


Famous Wins

Ascot Gold Cup Mr Dinos
Cheveley Park Stakes Pass the Peace
Derby Generous
Dewhurst Stakes Generous
Fillies' Mile Culture Vulture
King George VI &
Queen Elizabeth Stakes
Lockinge Stakes Broken Hearted
Nassau Stakes Ruby Tiger
St. Leger Snurge
Sun Chariot Stakes Lady in Waiting
Yorkshire Oaks Bint Pasha

Grosser Preis von Berlin Ibn Bey
Preis von Europa Ibn Bey

Derby Italiano Zaizoom, Time Star
Gran Criterium Torrismondo
Gran Premio d'Italia Posidonas
Gran Premio di Milano Snurge, Strategic Choice
Oaks d'Italia Bright Generation
Premio Lydia Tesio Ruby Tiger
Premio Presidente della Repubblica Great Palm

Canadian International Stakes Snurge

Poule d'Essai des Pouliches Culture Vulture
Prix de la Forêt Sarab
Prix d'Ispahan Zoman
Prix Marcel Boussac Culture Vulture
Prix Royal-Oak Mr Dinos
Prix de la Salamandre John de Coombe
Prix Vermeille Bint Pasha


Irish Derby

Irish Oaks Knight's Baroness
Irish St. Leger Ibn Bey, Strategic Choice
Pretty Polly Stakes Bint Pasha, Ruby Tiger
Tattersalls Gold Cup Zoman

Washington, D.C. International Stakes Zoman

Whatcombe's History

The Domesday Book was commissioned in December 1085 by William the Conqueror, who invaded England from Normandy, France, in 1066. The first draft of the Domesday Book was completed in August 1086 and contained records for 13,418 settlements in the English counties south of the Scottish border (marked by the rivers Ribble and Tees at the time).

  Whatcome was recorded as a medieval village. It is a mile or so south east from Fawley Manor. Saxon remains were found here when in the 1930s a grave was dug for Blandford, probably the most famous stallion of his day. The present house incorporates parts of the old Norman church which, like the original manor house, has long since fallen into ruin.

It is said that stones from this church were taken to build the chantry chapel at Lambourn. Another well known tradition has it that the bells were stolen from Whatcombe’s church and were surreptitiously melted down, so that they could not be traced, and were then recast to provide bells for East Garston church. Local legend maintains that Whatcombe was also at one time a monastery and that a secret passageway linked it to the Manor at South Fawley Many generations of children have searched for the priest’s hole and the secret staircase that would lead them down to this underground escape route.

Whatever its origin, in the present century Whatcombe has become fam¬ous as a racing stable, first under R. C. Dawson, later under Arthur Budgett and now Paul Cole. Several Derby winners have been trained on nearby Woolley Downs, one of the best training gallops in the country, known both for the superlative quality of its turf and for its contours which closely resemble those of Tattenham Corner.  
  At the junction of the South Fawley road and the A338, there is a wooded and waterlogged area where used to stand three famous elms known as Adam and Eve and the Serpent. When one succumbed to Dutch elm disease a decade or more ago they said it must be the serpent. Now alas Adam and Eve have also left this Berkshire Eden.

Horses Trained

Blandford (1919) by Swynford out of Blanche
Blakeney (1966) by Hethersett out of Windmill Girl
Generous (1988) by Caerleon out of Doff The Derby
Snurge (1987) by Ela-Mana-mou out of Finlandia
Morston winning the 1973 Derby
Mumtaz Mahal (1921) by The Tetrarch out of Lady Josephine

Past Trainers

Richard Cecil Dawson Arthur Budgett Paul Cole
(1865 - 1955)

Famous Owners

  HRH Prince Fahd Salman H H Aga Khan  

Location & Directions

Whatcombe is situated one hour west of London, 5 miles off junction 14 of the M4. It is on the A338 and is clearly signposted and easy to find.

Click on map to zoom

Contact Us

Paul Cole Racing
Whatcombe Estate
Oxfordshire OX12 9NW

Tel: 01488 638433

Fax: 01488 638609