Love Island lads Chris and Kem cause a stir on Jackdaws trip
For much of the summer Love Island stars Chris Hughes and Kem Cetinay were seen on television cavorting like a pair of stallions. It therefore seemed quite fitting that on Monday they spent a morning with a collection of top racehorses, albeit most of them geldings.
Jackdaws Castle neighbour Chris brought TV 'bromance' pal Kem to Jonjo O'Neill's base, where stable staff not surprisingly became rather excited, although not nearly so excited as leading jockey Aidan Coleman.
Kem and Chris finished first and third respectively among the men coupled up in the ITV surprise hit of the summer, whose twin elements of old-fashioned romance and rampant fornication attracted nearly three million viewers.
However, while spending time in a racing yard was new to Kem, Jackdaws is an old stomping ground for Chris, whose father, Paul, is O'Neill's electrician. His half-brother Tom Arkell manages the trainer's public relations.
"I live only a couple of fields away and I love my racing so it was nice to pop down there, especially as Jonjo and Jacqui are close family friends," said Chris, speaking to the Racing Post.
"We were filming but more or less just minced around. I showed Kem around the place and we even did a bit of mucking out.
"I'm obviously familiar with horseracing but he's totally not. He's the opposite. We're two completely different people but best mates.
"He'd never stroked a horse in his life – and he was scared to touch one, bless him. It was funny. He enjoyed himself, though."
Joining the boys on Monday were Sir Anthony McCoy, Richie McLernon and Coleman, who it transpires has thinner legs than Chris.
"A lot of the stable lads and girls came to watch while we filmed, but Aidan was the worst," revealed Chris.
"I think he was a little bit starstruck. I had to have a word with him, just to tell him to calm down. He's a good stick, though. I tried to put his boots on but he's got very small calves. I couldn't get the zip up!"
Although Chris's diary is bulging at the seams, time for racing will be made, including a trip to British Champions Day, while Love Island lover and now girlfriend Olivia Attwood - who attracted tabloid headlines when comparing Chris to a racehorse on the programme - may then join him at Prestbury Park.
"I'm looking forward to the winter meetings at Cheltenham but I'm also off to Ascot next month," he said.
"I'm that busy at the moment, filming every day, including in LA next week. I've got my calendar to do, my fitness DVD and appearances, so it will be nice to have a day at Ascot.
"Liv has been racing but she's never been to Cheltenham, that's the issue. I've had to tell her you haven't actually been racing until you've been to Cheltenham. It's the home of racing. There's no debating that. I will be taking her in November or March. She can get glammed up and enjoy it."
He added: "I've been a member at Cheltenham for the last eight years but, as I'm now 24, my junior badge will soon run out and I'll have to get a full adult membership badge next year. I'm a bit livid about that."