"Whatever he turned his hand to, he could make it work"
Industry figures pay tribute to Bob McCreery, the breeder of Old Vic
Chris Harper, Whitsbury Manor Stud
He was the prime mover behind the European Breeders’ Fund and a tremendous supporter to the Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association.
Bob also bred Old Vic, High Top and a lot of very good horses, despite not having that many mares. He was a remarkable chap and a very good friend of mine. We still miss him.
We stood Electric here at Whitsbury Manor Stud who he bred and was a very good middle-distance horse. I've known him for donkey’s years and had mares in partnership with him. We met up through breeding circles and I knew him from when he had Moreton Paddox Stud in Warwickshire.
I always got on very well with him, and we were good friends.
On the breeding side, his crowning achievement was perhaps Old Vic, an Irish Derby winner, or High Top, another Classic Winner with the 2,000 Guineas.
The EBF was one of his crowning glories in supporting breeding. Bob was a pioneer, and was one of the first to see the problems with the lack of prize-money.
Geoffrey Howson, bloodstock agent
I knew Bob for many, many years. I first met him in the 1960s, and met him through breeding, when he was a really successful breeder. I can remember watching the 2,000 Guineas with him in 1972, when a horse he bred, High Top, won the race.
He was a very perceptive reader of the bloodstock market and he had some very good ideas that were perhaps thought of as “out of the box” but worked.
He was a very successful breeder, particularly with Old Vic and High Top. I remember him also as a successful amateur jockey. I thought Brough Scott paid an excellent tribute to him and summed him up very well.
Whatever he turned his hand to in bloodstock, he could make it work.
David Elsworth, trainer
I’ve known Bob periodically for a good number of years. I've known him since he was an amateur jockey, as we rode at the same time.
He was a man who didn’t suffer fools, but he was a very kind fellow. Beneath that brash exterior, he was a very nice man.
Bob was a very successful breeder and he bred Old Vic. He was very enthusiastic and professional about his breeding and his matings. He always had very good, strong bloodlines. He was very successful at what he did, and he had some very good horses.
Whatever he turned his hand to, he did it thoroughly. He worked very hard at breeding horses. He had some very strong theories on breeding which he followed through at all times.