Landmark winner puts Philip Hobbs into select company among training greats

Philip Hobbs: recorded his 3,000th career winner with Zanza's victory in the Denman Chase
Philip Hobbs: "unassuming style and easy to underestimate, but in achievement he is a giant"Credit: Edward Whitaker

Philip Hobbs joins the ranks of great trainers with his 3,000th career victory, a score that comprises 2,945 over jumps in Britain, 15 in Ireland, three in France and 37 on the Flat.

His tally includes 20 at the Cheltenham Festival, notably the Champion Hurdle in 2003 with Rooster Booster, the best horse of his career, and the Queen Mother Champion Chase in 2002 with Flagship Uberalles. He gained the first of his 3,000 wins at Exeter on August 22, 1985 with North Yard, ridden by himself.

Hobbs is only the 12th trainer based in Britain to win 3,000 races, the all-time list (Flat and jumps combined) being headed by the recently retired Mark Johnston with a domestic score of 5,050. The others are Richard Hannon snr, Martin Pipe, Sir Michael Stoute, Nicky Henderson, Paul Nicholls, John Gosden, Sir Henry Cecil, John Dunlop, Barry Hills and Richard Fahey.

Counting wins over jumps in Britain only, Hobbs (2,945) lies fourth behind Pipe (3,930), Nicholls (3,531) and Henderson (3,510), having recently overtaken Arthur Stephenson and 19th-century trainer Arthur Yates.

His other champions include Pleasure Shared, who was both the champion staying hurdler and the top novice of 1995-96; Captain Chris, who never got the credit he deserved but was the official champion steeplechaser over two and a half miles in 2013-14; and Defi Du Seuil, the biggest contributor to the trainer's tally of 28 Grade 1 wins.

Hobbs, a rarity among top trainers in being a university graduate, has never been champion trainer, although he was runner-up to Nicholls in 2005-06 and provided most of the horses who made Richard Johnson champion jockey four times.

Philip Hobbs has an unassuming style and is easy to underestimate, but in achievement he is a giant.

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