Oliver Sherwood and Nicky Henderson continue with Trevor Hemmings tributes after three-time Grand National-winning owner dies
Lambourn trainer Oliver Sherwood has been leading the tributes after three-time Grand National-winning owner Trevor Hemmings passed away at the age of 86.
The news rocked the sporting world earlier this week as the Preston North End owner was a huge supporter of National Hunt racing.
Hemmings is one of five owners to have won the Aintree steeplechase three times.
In the famous green, white and yellow colours, Hedgehunter was the first time he tasted Grand National success in 2005.
This was followed up in 2011 with Ballabriggs and then again in 2015 with the Sherwood-trained Many Clouds.
Prior to the 2015 Grand National, trainer Sherwood was unsure whether or not it was the right time to run Many Clouds at Aintree, but Hemmings was keen on the task.
Sherwood said: “Without him I wouldn’t have won a National because when I had Many Clouds, I thought it was a year too soon after he ran in the Gold Cup.
“I thought it was too soon, but Trevor said we had nothing to lose and we should have a crack at it.
“We did and the rest is history,” admitted Sherwood. “It was his input, he wasn’t telling me he was asking me and that is teamwork for you and as he did everything in the right way and it ended well.
“He came down after the National and he joined in with the local community in Lambourn for the celebrations and he loved that as much as winning on the day.”
As well as success at Aintree, Hemmings won the Ladbrokes Trophy (formerly known as the Hennessy Gold Cup) at Newbury on three occasions with Trabolgan (2005), Many Clouds (2014) and Cloth Cap (2020).
Hemmings had horses with a lot of trainers across the country and Sherwood was full of praise for the man who was a huge supporter of horse racing.
“He was a remarkable man, he was very easy to train for and he had a lot of different trainers, but he let us get on with it.
“He enjoyed the highs and he knew the lows and he was a legend in the National Hunt racing world.
“He was a gentlemen, he came from very humble beginnings and he created an empire, but he knew where his roots were and he was a very likable man.
“It’s too early to say what will happen to the horses, but he’ll be a huge loss in the racing world and that is certain.”
Meanwhile, Seven Barrows handler Nicky Henderson took to social media to pay tribute to both Hemmings and Sir Peter Gibbings, who also sadly died.
He said: “The world of National Hunt racing and the world of the great entrepreneurs has lost one of its most loved and respected supporters.”
Henderson trained Trabolgan, to hand Hemmings his first Grade 1 winner as an owner, and he explained how emotional the day was.
“We had some wonderful horses for him – Trabolgan was almost certainly the best of them winning the RSA at Cheltenham and the Hennessy the following year when Trevor, like the true sportsman that he was, stood by Mick Fitzgerald who hadn’t ridden for several months.
“We will all miss him enormously, but have so many fond memories,” he added. “Farewell to a great man and a great friend.”
In regards to the sad passing of Sir Peter, Henderson said: “Sir Peter and his wife Louise had horses with us over many years and we had some wonderful days together, and nobody cared for their horses more than they did.
“I know how much enjoyment Peter gained from National Hunt racing, and a kinder, and more enthusiastic man would be hard to find.
“We shared some great days, particularly with a little horse called Isio who won a number of top-class races for us including what I always thought was one of the greatest races of current times when he beat Azertyuiop in a titanic battle in the Victor Chandler at Ascot.
“We at Seven Barrows have so many wonderful memories and send our love and deepest sympathies to Louise.”