Michael Appleby – Trainer Profile

Michael Appleby
License: UK and Ireland
Date of Birth:
Yorkshire, United Kingdom
UK and Ireland
Notable Horses:
Titles Awarded:
Biggest Wins:
  • £34,026: Betfred TV Chipchase Stakes (Group 3) 28Jun14 Danzeno Andrew Mullen

About Michael Appleby

Rising star trainer – Michael Appleby

From nowhere the name of Michael Appleby has become known and respected in the British horse racing world over the last few seasons. The man who gave up at the end of 2008 after a first unsuccessful attempt to succeed at training is now on the fast track to the big-time after a stunning run of success since 2011.

In 2008 Appleby accepted an offer to work as assistant trainer to Andrew Balding and the experience gained at the legendary Kingsclere stables where a host of smart horses are housed clearly made all the difference. Setting up again on his own in 2010 at Danethorpe in Nottinghamshire, Appleby’s bandwagon began to roll with 3 winners from just 29 runners at an amazing level stakes profit of more than £106!

In 2011 he sent out 15 winners, then a year later really began to set tongues wagging sending out no less than 40 winners at a strike-rate of 12%, again with a level stakes profit of more than £54 that included a 20/1 success with Art Scholar in the feature November Handicap at Doncaster on the last day of the Flat season.

In 2013 Appleby set himself and his team a target of 50 winners for the season, something they achieved with something spare in sending out a total of 65 winners during the calendar year, most having been cheaply bought horses who were cast-offs from other stables.

With his yard now completely full and owners on the waiting list the future looks particularly bright for Appleby in 2014, and at the time of writing (mid-June) he had already had an impressive 43 winners for the term, including an outstanding across-the-card treble on June 14 that included the most valuable race won by the yard when young apprentice rider Ali Rawlinson steered home Demora to win the Scottish Sprint Cup at Musselburgh, and with it a first prize of over £62,000.

The rising star trainer’s aim is to try and improve the quality of horses at the yard and have the opportunity to compete at a higher level, something Appleby believes may well be possible with the progressive Danzeno, winner of a Redcar maiden in autumn 2013 before reappearing to score in a hot Newmarket handicap in April. He believes Danzeno could well win a listed or Group race by the end of the season.

Appleby has forged a good partnership with the capable northern jockey Andrew Mullen, but from the percentage strike-rate angle has also enjoyed plenty of success with other riders. Silvestre de Sousa has a tremendous 57% win ratio when riding for the yard, Tom Queally 27%, apprentice Ali Rawlinson 23%, while Mullen, who has partnered no less than 71 winners for the yard has done so at a strike rate of 15%.

Appleby trains close to Southwell racecourse and has enjoyed more than 50 winners at the track at a respectable strike rate of 19%, but it pays to follow him elsewhere, including at Bath (33%), Newmarket (30%), Chester (27%), Catterick (20%) and Nottingham (19%) [1].

Although those stats are something to consider when selecting which horse to bet on. Appleby has a fine collection of them and not all will be in their prime. Another trainer with more than double success rate is easier to handicap, like Dan Skelton who has a 43% win rate.