• George Scott


Lady Cecil's assistant tells Tom Peacock the time is right for him to go it alone as a trainer

Lady Cecil's assistant George Scott is to become a trainer in his own right and will start saddling runners early next year with several solid cornerstones of support.

The decision by Sir Henry Cecil's widow to retire at the end of this season has hastened the 26-year-old into launching his venture, which will be based at Saffron House Stables, at the top of Newmarket's Hamilton Road.

Previously tutored by Derby-winning trainer Michael Bell, Scott was called back from a stint in America when Lady Jane made a plan to continue operating the historic Warren Place yard beyond 2013. He is acknowledged to have played an essential role in the resurgence of Frankel's brother Noble Mission, who won the 2014 British Champion Stakes.

"A lot of Jane's staff have shown an interest in coming with me, some of whom were with Henry for years," said Scott.

"For a first-season trainer it's hard to get your hands on staff like that, and it's really my strong point that I know I've got a team I've worked with."

He hopes several of the higher-profile equine names will move across town with him too, he has been promised the distinguished patronage of the Niarchos family.

There are a couple of two-year-old fillies that look like they'll peak further on, and they have very kingly agreed to support me by sending their remaining horses at Warren Place," Scott said

"It's been a real privilege to train for an operation like that to begin with. Everyone says you need older horses to go to war with, to get yourself about, and hopefully I'll have at least eight or nine until the two-year-olds come out"

Scott has saved as his phone background a screen shot of Richard Hughes' sale itinerary, and he is likely to bump into the champion jockey around Europe as they hunt for yearlings. However, both aspiring trainers have taken very different routes".

In my GCSE year at Harrow it was pretty clear I wanted to get into racing and had to prove it to my house master and my parents. They could see I wasn't going to take my education any further and we decided I had to go and muck out, be a lad for a year and understand what it requires," Said Scott

Family friend and bloodstock agent David Milton put him in touch with Paul Nicholls and Scott was working at Ditcheat in 2008 when Denman led home the Cheltenham Gold Cup one-two-three. He looked after the Tolworth Hurdle winner and Breedbreeze and rode a few point-to-point winners.

Henry Skelton, Ryan Mahon, Harry Fry, Jack Barber and Nick Scholfield were all down in the bottom yard and we were starting our careers together"

Now his peers are the rising Flat stars Ed Walker, Hugo Palmer and Charlie Fellowes. Like that trio, Scott believes communication is key in order for owners to "feel part of the process"

It has to be a positive that people in the industry are prepared to give young guns a go. It gives me a lot of reassurance that the timing is right."

#LadyCecil #TomPeacock #SirHenryCecil #MichaelBell #WarrenPlace #Frankel #NobleMission #BritishChampionStakes #NiarchosFamily #RichardHughes #PaulNicholls #Ditcheat #Denman #TolworthHurdle #HenrySkelton #RyanMahon #HarryFry #JackBarber #NickScholfield #EdWalker #HugoPalmer #CharlieFellowes


Eve Lodge Stables, Hamilton Rd, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 0NY

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