Trainers – Mark Johnston, Saeed bin Suroor

Mark Johnston and Saeed bin Suroor are considered the young guns of the horse training fraternity, and they have both met with considerable success at Goodwood even though they are relatively new to the game.

Mark Johnston

Johnston languishes in third place, behind Cecil and Dunlop, as one of the most successful trainers at Goodwood. To date he has claimed a total of 52 wins, 38 of which came over the 5 day Festival Meet.

A qualified vet from Scotland, he only started training horses in 1987, but quickly established himself as one of the premier trainers in Britain.

He has already clinched the Top Trainer Award at the Glorious Goodwood Festival no fewer than six times, which is an indication of his total dominance of the trade at present. (2006 with 4 winners, 2005 with 3 triumphs, 2003 with three champions, 2002 with five wins, 2000 with 4 strikes and 1998 with 3 successes). In 2001, he was awarded the Media Dinner Award at Goodwood.

His first success at Goodwood came in 1991 when his charge, The Can Can Man, won the SIS Handicap, and since then he has just kept the winners coming. He also trained Double Trigger, which is the only horse to have won the Goodwood Cup three times!

A Selection of Big Race Wins at Goodwood

Veuve Cliquot Stakes (3)
Goodwood Cup (5)
Totesport Mile (2) Stakes (3)
King George Stakes (1)
March Stakes (1)
Richmond Stakes (1)
Prestige Stakes (2)
Saeed bin Suroor

Suroor is currently the head trainer for Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin team, and he is champing at the bit just behind Mark Johnston on the list of the Top Trainers at Goodwood.

He has a great success rate at Goodwood, having won a total of 50 races overall, 14 of which have come over the Festival week. He won the Top Trainer at the Festival Meet in 1987, but 1999 will be a year he will never forget – he pulled off a real coup by winning both Goodwood’s Group one pattern races – the Sussex and Nassau Stakes, as well as being the top trainer of the five day meet with a total of four winners.

Godolphin owned Aljabr set a new course record, winning the Sussex Stakes in 1minute 35.66 seconds, and Zahrat Dubai claimed the Nassau Stakes. He also won the Group 2 Goodwood Cup with Kayf Tara, the Celebration Mile, also a Group 2
race with Cape Cross, and two listed events with Slip Stream and Dubai Millenium.