Horse racing fans braced for Storm Force Ten to hit Sussex

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The remarkable story of the popular one-eyed racehorse Material World reaches two milestones in the next few weeks.

This week a new racing club called Storm Force Ten is being launched in West Sussex for people who want a stake in the racing career of her second foal, born earlier this year.

And soon, the second birthday of her first-born, Ollie, will see him given his racing name as he undergoes his first spell of work under his trainer.

Material World, owned by West Wittering’s Robin Smith, won a legion of fans for overcoming her disability in a jump racing career which saw her win five races and be placed in another 11.

Now Smith’s trainer daughter, Suzy Smith, is overseeing the development of Ollie – as interest grows in the second foal, Millie, sired by international racing success story Shirocco.

Shirocco won £1.3m-plus prize money in a career which included wins in the German Derby, the Italian Derby, the Coronation Cup at Epsom and the Breeder’s Cup Turf in the States.

Shirocco offspring are fetching up to 300,000 euros and between them have 28 entries for classics in 2011.

Robin Smith said: “Even before our Storm Force Ten Racing Club has been launched, I’ve had people phoning me wanting a share.”

Material World was described as an inspirational mare of outstanding courage.

Her first foal, sired by the Ascot Gold Cup and Irish St Leger winner Kayf Tara, is two on May 22, when the result of a vote on his racing name by members of the first Material World racing club will be revealed.

Smith said: “He’s developing well and looks fantastic. He’s now with Suzy at Lewes where he’s being introduced to work. He’s a relaxed horse and has been very well handled.

“After two months he’ll be back to Overbury Stud in Gloucetershire, where he’s developed to date, then he’ll go back to Lewes next year.

“The aim is to run him as a four-year-old in 2013. He’ll start with bumper races.

“Material World had some memorable performances at Cheltenham and it’d be lovely to aim him at Cheltenham’s World Hurdle. That would perhaps be the dream.”

The club members who own Ollie are a mix of Sussex enthusiasts and others from further afield.

Apart from the excitement of seeing the two youngsters develop, there’s also the small matter of Material World being covered for a third time, this time at a stud in Ireland. It seems her story is one that will run and run – hopefully like her offspring.

To register interest in the Storm Force Ten club, call Robin Smith on 01243 513933 or email robin@materialworld.org.uk

STEVE BONE