Grand Palace

Super consistent gelding who won on every All-Weather track at which he raced.


Grand Palace Profile

Grand Palace had initially been purchased on behalf of TV presenter Simon Mapletoft by Stef Higgins, but actually went into training with Derek Shaw. The gelding had originally been with Michael Stoute but was picked up at the sales as the top Newmarket handler dispersed some of his lesser lights. His first run for us (in partnership with Simon Mapletoft) in June 2006 was a winning one at Southwell. Trainer Derek Shaw was insistent he was a good thing and so it proved.

The following year he was wonderfully consistent, made even more remarkable by the fact that he rarely galloped at home and did nearly all his training in the circular swimming pool that Derek had at his stables while training in Danethorpe. He won three times during the calendar year and was placed a further seven times, including five times as runner-up. He wasn't entirely straight forward and hung noticeably left on a couple of occasions around the right-handed track at Kempton.

Derek kept working with the gelding and he did eventually land a decent handicap at the Surrey course off a mark of 67 in February 2009. That was his last win for us but he continued to race consistently after that and was unfortunate not to add to his tally of wins.

His seven wins were spread across four All-Weather tracks, three at Wolverhampton (2 at 6f and 1 at 7f), two at Lingfield (both at 6f), two at Southwell (1 each at 5f and 7f) and at Kempton (6f). For a gelding by Grand Lodge out of a Reference Point mare he showed tremendous speed as witnessed by him winning over the minimum trip. He was also placed over the extended mile at Wolverhampton and so was tremendously versatile. He didn't have a great turn of pace but did have a good cruising speed and always kept going towards the line. It was this versatility and honesty that endeared him to many shareholders over several seasons.

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