Charles Laird will no longer be training racehorses.
The multiple Gr1 winning conditioner told Tabnews: “I haven’t officially handed in my licence yet, but sold my last 15 at the Shongweni sale last Tuesday, and am not training anymore. About 90% of my stable was owned by Markus Jooste and since December they have been selling off anything worth racing, so it was time to call it a day.”
Part of one of South Africa’s great racing dynasties, Laird took out his licence in September 1995, taking over from his father Russell after five years with the yard. Things got off to a great start when National Emblem won the John Skeaping at his very first meeting, and Charles still rates the great racehorse and stallion as “the best I have trained”.
Prior to that, he had worked as a handicapper at Turffontein, for the TBA and at a stud farm – so he has experienced racing from many different sides.
After going to stud, National Emblem also provided Laird with a couple of latter day superstars in Nhlavini and Rebel King, and he also mentions Our Giant, Warm White Night, Seventh Rock and July hero Hunting Tower as others that stand out from a long career.
Asked about his future plans, Laird said he was “busy consolidating and winding up the CC and business. After that I will think about what to do next.”