Lord 'Teddy' Grimthorpe has been appointed as racing manager to Imad Al Sagar, whose Blue Diamond Stud has recently undergone a major restructure.
A widely respected figure in the racing world who last November took on the role of chairman of the National Stud, Grimthorpe was racing manager for more than 20 years to Prince Khalid Abdullah of Juddmonte Farms, who died a year ago this week.
Grimthorpe has replaced Tony Nerses and will begin in his new position in February. In addition to his National Stud role, he is also deputy senior steward of The Jockey Club and on the board of York Racecourse, where he held the position of chairman for nine years at the track as Chairman.
Alongside Grimthorpe, Ted Voute will also join the Blue Diamond Stud team as interim chief executive officer while continuing his duties at Eydon Hall Farm and as racing and bloodstock advisor to Prince Faisal's Nawara Stud. He will fulfil the role until a permanent CEO is appointed.
“We have taken the opportunity to restructure our team at Blue Diamond Stud for 2022 and are delighted to welcome Teddy Grimthorpe as Racing Manager,” said Imad Al Sagar. “Tony Nerses was a major contributor to the growth and success of Blue Diamond Stud and we wish him all the best in his future endeavours.
“Teddy is a widely respected racing figure on an international scale. He played a key role in the sustained success of Juddmonte Farms and with his wealth of knowledge and experience, will undoubtedly prove a valuable asset to Blue Diamond Stud. I am greatly looking forward to working with him.”
Lord Grimthorpe said, “I am very touched to have been asked by Imad Al Sagar to join his team. He has built up an impressive bloodstock portfolio and I will look forward to being any help I can with his operation.
“I will continue to be chairman of the National Stud and serve on the boards of both Jockey Club and York Racecourse, all of which should fit nicely into this new role.”
Imad Al Sagar's original involvement in European racing came in partnership with Saleh Al Homaizi, the pair enjoying notable success with 2007 Derby winner Authorized (Ire) and the previous year's Irish 2000 Guineas Araafa (Ire). In 2010, they established Blue Diamond Stud, which is formed of two farms in the vicinity of Newmarket and has a broodmare band of 40. The stud's most successful homebred to date is the treble Group 1 winner Decorated Knight (GB), who remains in the ownership of Al Sagar and stands at the Irish National Stud.
Al Sagar and Al Homeizi parted company in 2018, with Al Sagar retaining the stud and buying out his partner in Pearling (Storm Cat), the dam of Decorated Knight, for 2.4 million gns during a partial dispersal of stock.
In July 2020, Al Sagar appointed Hollie Doyle as retained jockey for the Blue Diamond Stud horses. Her contract has been renewed for 2022 as first jockey, as has that of Martin Dwyer, who was appointed second jockey last year.
In a further new appointment for the stud, Gerry Meehan takes up the role as yearling manager, having previously served a lengthy stint in the same role for Newsells Park Stud. He will also oversee sales consignments under the name of Blue Diamond Stud Farm (UK) Ltd, with three lots consigned under this banner for the forthcoming Tattersalls February Sale.
Andrew Rawlin, who has been with Blue Diamond Stud for 11 years, has been promoted to mares manager, and Nancy Sexton has been named as bloodstock and media advisor. Sexton is a well-known bloodstock journalist and is also the European representative for the Kentucky-based Schumer Bloodstock.
Al Sagar added, “With such a strong team on board for 2022, I believe we are well placed to not only consolidate Blue Diamond Stud's position as an elite presence within the industry, but also to strive for further growth and success. As such, we have started the year on a positive note and I look forward to a successful year.”