InterviewThe Big Read

'If I don't like a trainer, that's it - whether they're a good trainer or not'

Bill and Tim Gredley talk to Peter Thomas about terrorising trainers, beating bombs and plans for Ambiente Friendly

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Like father like son: Bill and Tim Gredley share the same bold approach to campaigning good horses
Like father like son: Bill and Tim Gredley share the same bold approach to campaigning good horsesCredit: Edward Whitaker

Talk to anybody who's trained a horse for Bill Gredley and you'll see a look in their eye that suggests they're in some way chastened, even exasperated. Press for details and there may be a puffing of the cheeks, a rolling of the eyes, the need to sit down in a darkened room for a few minutes.

I asked James Fanshawe about it in the lead-up to Gredley's Ambiente Friendly running in the Derby, and he gave me the censored version: "With Bill, your mind's made up, there's no fannying about."

The two had not been of one mind regarding the colt's optimum trip, it transpired. Bill and his son – and racing manager – Tim had spotted staying genes somewhere deep in the pedigree and had lobbied hard for a middle-distance campaign at three, but the trainer sort of wondered if all this was simply the figment of ambitious imaginations.

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