Best Mate, Henrietta Knight and Terry Biddlecombe

Henrietta Knight: Best Mate trainer to return 11 years after retiring

Best Mate, Henrietta Knight and Terry BiddlecombeHenrietta Knight and her late husband Terry Biddlecombe helped train Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Best Mate

Henrietta Knight, trainer of three-time Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Best Mate, will return to training 11 years after retiring.

The 76-year-old won three successive Gold Cups between 2002 and 2004.

She has spoken to the British Horseracing Authority to gain her licence and hopes to return on 1 January with a team of 25 to 30 horses.

“I like an aim in life. I’d like to go back to Cheltenham and back into the winners’ enclosure,” said Knight.

“I love the idea of training horses again because I have a lot of horses here to teach to jump and do things with.

“I see other trainers winning and I’d like to be involved a bit more with them myself.

“One good race at Cheltenham would be my ambition.”

Knight sent out more than 700 winners from her Lockinge yard in Oxfordshire between 1989 and 2012.

After matching the achievement of the great Arkle at Cheltenham, Best Mate missed the 2005 race with a burst blood vessel and died later that year at Exeter after a suspected heart attack.

His ashes were scattered on the Cheltenham course.

Knight was married to three-time champion jump jockey Terry Biddlecombe, who died in 2014 after a lengthy illness.

She also trained Edredon Bleu, who won the Champion Chase in 2000, ridden by AP McCoy.

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