The Brimming Water

It had been his brother’s birthday and Mum and Dad had taken a Newbury table braced, I suspect, by more than water. Up on the second-floor balcony we were surrounded by a cheery group who yelled the winner home (though ‘Come on The Brimming Water’ isn’t exactly the catchiest slogan to yell at a race crescendo). Most of them then poured into the winners’ enclosure where, from the hugging, shoulder-slapping and high fives, it appeared the cheery jockey knew them all personally. It really was a true family and friends affair: Samuel Drinkwater was an accomplished rider on the point-to-point circuit where his 100-plus winners included successes for Sam’s father Nigel Twiston-Davies and for the day’s two other victors Fergal O’Brien and Tom Lacey. A bad accident, which saw Sam Drinkwater nearly lose his foot, put an end to his riding career. Undaunted he sold his house, and his parents Karen and Paul sold theirs to set him up in his Worcestershire yard at Strensham where they all live. ‘Without them I’d have nothing,’ says Sam quietly and after a dream start he’s certainly been through the highs and lows of racing.

Tour des Champs was a 50-1 winner at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day 2017 within weeks of the rookie trainer taking out a licence. ‘I rather took it for granted and thought the winners would keep coming after that,’ but tragically Tour des Champs had to be put down after an operation for colic. ‘That was a real setback,’ and in season two the virus struck. Since then, however, the stable has prospered. Already this season they have 13 winners on the board, comfortably beating last season’s total of eight.

at Hereford Racecourse, Hereford. Picture date: Sunday February 28, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story RACING Hereford. Photo credit should read: David Davies/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only, no commercial use without prior consent from rights holder.