Dual-purpose trainer Mary Reveley dies, aged 77

Tue 31 Oct 2017
Mary Reveley - Racingfotos Mary Reveley has died, aged 76 (Racingfotos)

By Racinguk.com staff

Britain's winning-most female trainer Mary Reveley has died aged 77, her son Keith has revealed.

The former dual-purpose trainer, who saddled over 2,000 winners in a pioneering career, died of a suspected heart attack at her family's North Yorkshire stables on Monday morning.

Keith Reveley said: "She was walking about the yard and was with Gill Boanas, who is training there now.

"She was around the horses, feeding them, and basically collapsed of a suspected heart attack.

"We're all still in shock, but it's just typical of her that she was around horses right up to the end."

Based at Groundhill Farm stables in Saltburn, Cleveland, Mary Reveley took out a training licence with just four horses in 1982 but soon emerged as a powerhouse of the northern circuit.

She was the first woman in Britain to saddle 100 winners in a calendar year, having reached the significant milestone in 1991.

In the same year she landed the Cambridgeshire handicap at Newmarket with her favourite horse, Mellottie.

Mary Reveley with James Reveley - Racingfotos Mary Reveley with her jockey grandson James at Kelso (Racingfotos)

In 1992, she then became the only British female to claim 50 victories in a Flat season.

She twice won the Cesarewitch with Old Red (1995) and Turnpole (1997), while the likes of Cab On Target, Marello, Seven Towers and Into The Red secured big-race victories over jumps for Reveley.

She retired from training in 2004 and passed on the baton to her son, who announced his own retirement this January.

Keith Reveley said: "The only good thing was that she didn't suffer at all.

"She always loved been on the farm and wasn't ever keen on going races as she just wanted to be around the horses.

"She did it all without any publicity and always wanted to stay out of the limelight.

"Even in spite of not wanting publicity, she was sent all these horses and enjoyed wonderful success.

"Her favourite horse all along was Mellottie. We bred him ourselves and he was her first ever foal.

"We bred him as jumper but he was just a freak on the Flat and went from a mark of 60 up to 110, winning Listed races at Newmarket and also the Cambridgeshire.

"The memories we have of her are just amazing.

"Her career was unbelievable and we didn't appreciate at the time just how successful she was."

Reveley's grandson, James, is the current National Hunt champion jockey in France and told the Yorkshire Post: "Nan was my biggest supporter.

"She was a very wise woman and the most loving grandmother you could wish for. May she rest in peace."

The National Trainers Federation said in a statement that Reveley "was from that rare seam of trainers whose fundamental horse knowledge enables them to bring out each horse's full potential, whatever its characteristics and aptitudes".

Trainer David Pipe said on Twitter that Reveley was "a tremendous trainer", while former northern-based jockey Dominic Elsworth said she was "so shrewd and was great at giving young lads a chance".

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