John Oxx and Patrick Prendergast are to join forces to form a new alliance from the same Curragh base.
Oxx, trainer of some of the sport’s greatest names, including Sea The Stars and Sinndar, is approaching 2000 winners, although he has had a quiet few years since his long association with the Aga Khan ended.
On the other hand Prendergast, who will not renew his licence, has been steadily growing his business with the filly Skitter Scatter providing him with a maiden Group One success, in the Moyglare Stud Stakes in September.
That Oxx’s Currabeg Stables and Prendergast’s base at Melitta Lodge are close together is an obvious benefit and no jobs will be lost in the venture, which has been backed by all owners.
“We feel the timing is good for both parties, we’ve got the space and Patrick has run out of it. I think Patrick would like a change in direction a bit,” Oxx told Press Association Sport.
“It suits us and it suits him, so hopefully it will work out well for both of us.”
He went on: “In Australia it is common to have two names on the licence, but that might be the case where they have a yard in Sydney and one in Melbourne, which is different to this. Patrick doesn’t want to be the trainer and is happy to come and work for me.
“The yards are a few hundred yards apart as the crow flies, with a railway line in between, but we used the same gallops on the Curragh.
“The horses are moving to my place, they are not going to stay at Melitta Lodge, he won’t be training from there.
“It’s a good boost for us, he’s got some good horses. I haven’t seen Skitter Scatter yet and Patrick has said she’s small and he doesn’t know how much scope she has, but she’s been a very good filly already.”
Prendergast was quick to stress nothing much will change for the new stable star.
“Very little will change for Skitter Scatter. She will work on the same gallops she has always worked on, she will be ridden by the same jockey, Ronan Whelan,” Prendergast told The Irish Field.
“The only difference is that there will be an extra set of eyes on her. That those eyes belong to John Oxx is an obvious benefit.”