Take up the reins from a rac­ing leg­end

This prop­erty comes with a thor­ough­bred rac­ing pedi­gree. Sharon Dale re­ports.

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY -

IDYL­LIC Low Farm in Hut­tons Ambo, near Mal­ton, has mass ap­peal, but it comes with an added ex­tra that makes it a dead cert for pro­fes­sional jock­eys.

The house has a sauna and shower in the at­tic, which is ideal for rid­ers who need to sweat off a few pounds be­fore a big race.

It was put there by rac­ing leg­end Ed­ward Hide, who built the prop­erty in 1964.

A sauna was a must for Ed­ward, who reck­ons his nat­u­ral weight has al­ways been 10 stones. So keep­ing a top weight of eight stones was a bat­tle he had to win to be­come one of the 20th cen­tury’s most suc­cess­ful jock­eys.

He rode 2,593 win­ners dur­ing a long ca­reer that in­cluded sev­eral Clas­sic tri­umphs, and his most fa­mous race was the Derby in 1973 on Morston, a 25/1 out­sider.

Al­though he is still an avid fol­lower of the sport, Ed­ward, 72, won’t be at the Derby next month.

He says: “I don’t go rac­ing much be­cause it’s not the same when you’re not rid­ing, and I’m not in­ter­ested in gam­bling.

“I al­ways say I fol­low it closely from a dis­tance.”

He checks the run­ners and rid­ers each evening and marks off the win­ners, and then records Chan­nel 4 Rac­ing when he’s out, which is of­ten.

He is a keen golfer and ten­nis player and helps out his wife Sue, who breeds ponies.

His work­load is about to get big­ger, too, af­ter he and Sue pre­pare to sell their home of 45 years.

It was on the mar­ket in 2007 for £795,000 and taken off for a year or so while the Hides re­assessed their op­tions.

It is now now back on for £100,000 less, at £695,000.

The cou­ple bought Low Farm 46 years ago and had their large de­tached home de­signed by an ar­chi­tect and built to their spec­i­fi­ca­tion. Now, af­ter de­cid­ing to down­size, they are plan­ning to go down the self­build route again.

“We are down­siz­ing due to age and with the chil­dren grown up and gone, we don’t need a fivebed­room house,” says Ed­ward.

“We are hop­ing to build an­other, smaller house nearby and we are keep­ing some of our land so my wife can con­tinue to breed show ponies.”

He is, he con­fides, think­ing about the fu­ture when they may need a more man­age­able prop­erty. He doesn’t take his present good form for granted, af­ter a shock bout of ill-health eight years ago.

On Derby Day 2001, he had an op­er­a­tion for prostate can­cer, which he sur­vived, only to have a heart at­tack a few months later.

“I was lucky be­cause I was sit­ting in the doc­tor’s surgery when it hap­pened or I wouldn’t have sur­vived,” says Ed­ward, who had a triple heart by­pass.

The heart at­tack sur­prised him be­cause he con­sid­ered him­self fit and healthy af­ter years of rac­ing, though the weight re­stric­tions may have taken their toll.

When his ca­reer as a jockey ended, he de­voted more time to golf and ten­nis and still plays of­ten. Even though his daugh­ter, a con­fer­ence or­gan­iser, and his son, a travel writer, now live in London, leav­ing the Mal­ton area is un­think­able for the Hides.

“All our old friends are here and my golf and ten­nis friends are here, too,” says Ed­ward.

He ar­rived in York­shire in the early 1950s and it has been home ever since, even when his ca­reer forced him to work away, with long stretches in New­bury, New­mar­ket and Hong Kong.

He is orig­i­nally from Shrop­shire and rac­ing was in his blood. His fa­ther was a trainer, as was his brother, and his nephew Philip is a Na­tional Hunt jockey.

“My only aim in life for as long as I can re­mem­ber was to be a jockey. It’s what I wanted to do and I’m for­tu­nate it came off for me.

“I had a pony from when I could walk, I went hunt­ing and I man­aged to keep light enough for the flat,” he says.

He started rid­ing for his fa­ther and when he was 14 he was spot­ted at New­mar­ket by Cap­tain Elsey, of the High­field Yard in Nor­ton, near Mal­ton.

The Cap­tain saw star qual­ity and even­tu­ally made him High­field’s sta­ble jockey.

His first clas­sic was the 1959 St Leger on Can­telo, owned by book­maker Wil­liam Hill and trained by Cap­tain Elsey.

He later es­tab­lished a part­ner­ship with Sher­iff Hut­ton trainer Mick Easterby, for whom he won the 1,000 Guineas on Mrs McArdy in 1977.

Known as Ed­die Hide, he was renowned as a great tac­ti­cal jockey, and would walk the course be­fore a race to find where the fastest ground was.

He went on to win a to­tal of six clas­sic races in­clud­ing the Derby, The Oaks, The 1,000 Guineas (1972 and 1977), and the St Leger, which he also won twice.

His per­sonal life mir­rored his suc­cess on the course. He met and mar­ried Sue and they bought the 45-acre Low Farm.

“It had a small farm­house and we couldn’t con­vert it and make it big­ger, so we built this house in­stead,” says Ed­ward.

Weare re­ally happy here. It’s lovely and quiet and we have beau­ti­ful scenery all around us.

It sits in a beau­ti­ful, ru­ral spot with views across the York­shire Wolds. In­side it has an en­trance hall, study, 30ft draw­ing room, din­ing room, kitchen with Aga, walk-in larder and laun­dry room.

Up­stairs there is a mas­ter bed­room with en-suite bath­room, four fur­ther bed­rooms and a house bath­room. The sauna and shower are in the at­tic.

Out­side there are gar­dens with a stream and a 2.87 acre pad­dock with fur­ther land avail­able by sep­a­rate ne­go­ti­a­tion.

The Hides cre­ated a stud on their farm­land and went on to breed the win­ners of 90 races. The stud busi­ness ran along­side Ed­ward’s ca­reer as a jockey un­til he rode his fi­nal race at the age of 49 in 1986.

He and Sue re­tired from breed­ing thor­ough­breds when they closed the stud in the 1990s.

"The last few years I’ve spent play­ing golf and ten­nis and keep­ing this place tidy,” he says.

Leav­ing the house will be a wrench, but mov­ing will not be too much of an up­heaval.

“The rea­son we’re build­ing an­other house on our land is be­cause we are re­ally happy liv­ing here.

“I’ve never thought of leav­ing, even when I was work­ing away.

“It’s lovely and quiet and we have beau­ti­ful scenery all around us and if we don’t sell the house then we’ll stay here.”

Low Farm, Hut­tons Ambo, near Mal­ton is for sale through Ch­ester­ton Hum­berts for £695,000. Tel: 01904 611828, www.chester­ton­hum­berts.com

Pic­ture: Simon Hulme

BACK ON MAR­KET: Ed­ward Hide with his wife Sue out­side their home of 46 years at Low Farm, Hut­tons Ambo, near Mal­ton.

RE­TIRED: Ed­ward Hide, 72, was one of the 20th cen­tury’s most suc­cess­ful jock­eys. He and his wife are down­siz­ing from their five-bed home.

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