A new book on horse racing is set to invoke a broad spectrum of emotions for racing fans and will raise funds for the Injured Jockeys Fund, when it is launched in October.

‘UNDER ORDERS: The Diary of a Racehorse Owner’s Husband’, by John Timpson, tells the epic journey of how John and his wife Alex pursued their dreams of racehorse ownership.

When John Timpson bought his wife Alex a racehorse in 2002 to fulfil a long-held dream of hers, a friend commented that it would be ‘a marvellous way to lose money’.

Little did he know this was to be the start of a thrilling, frustrating and expensive adventure culminating in 20 racehorses and numerous visits to betting shops and top racecourses to see their horses run – sending them well on their way to proving the old adage that the best way to make a small fortune is to start with a larger one, and buy a few racehorses.

“It is well documented that we have turned our business around from rock bottom to a multi-million pound enterprise but perhaps not so generally realised that Alex was genuinely at the heart of my success,” says John. “So, when we found ourselves in a position to afford it, I wanted to make her dream come true: she wanted to own racehorses.”

Underlying their experiences with the racing world, John and Alex’s shared joie de vivre took a tragic turn when Alex was diagnosed with cancer. Throughout a rigorous course of treatments she continued to follow her horses with John by her side, until her untimely death in January 2016.

Timpson discusses his life as a ‘racehorse owner’s husband’ detailing the fun and financial situations he discovered after fuelling Alex’s passion for horseracing, including a unique exposé of the costs of racehorse ownership.

The book concludes with John’s heartfelt tribute to his wife and soul mate. “Finishing this book gave me a chance to reflect on how much pleasure Alex got from being an owner and the joint pleasure that racing gave to us in the last years of her life.

“Lots of racing connections will miss Alex and I will miss her most of all. But I’m the really lucky one, I have spent two thirds of my 73 years with Alex and am therefore the person who benefitted most from her love of life. When we got married I could never have guessed that it would involve 90 foster children and 20 racehorses. Life with Alex was never dull.”

John Timpson CBE is one of the UK’s most successful businessmen. He is Chairman of the eponymous high street cobblers, key cutters, engravers and watch repairers, with more than 1,400 branches throughout the UK and Ireland. Timpson also writes a column in the Daily Telegraph where he provides straight-talking, no-nonsense business advice.

Sales of the book, which is published in October 2016 and will cost £14.99 Demy PBK, can be made through http://UnderOrders.co.uk and will raise money for the Injured Jockeys Fund.


PREVIEW READERSCOMMENTS (more on http://UnderOrders.co.uk):


“I haven’t seen such a good account of the sums involved anywhere else.” “I really think this book could become a handbook for The Racehorse Owners Association.” more…    Paul Webber, Racehorse Trainer


“It is well written and I personally enjoyed the book as an owner myself.” Nigel Payne, Chairman of the PJA


“I would certainly recommend to anyone foolish enough to start thinking of owning a racehorse or two or even a leg as a must read.” “Maybe the jockey school should have it as compulsory reading for their apprentices.” more…    Richard Page


“The book is factually honest and a wonderful description about how horseracing (steeple chasing) is purely for fun.” more…    Michael Stoddart, Racehorse Owner


The comments on the different types of racecourse hospitality racehorse owners can expect to receive was an eye-opener.” more…   Angela White, member of the Northern Racing Club


 “I learned a lot about NH Racing even though I have been interested in it for decades.” more… Brian Thompson


 “A charming and personal insight into the world of racing which embraces both the pleasure and the pain associated as well as the real cost.” more…  David Morgan


“I think a lot of current owners would enjoy it (and recognise the truth of so much of it) but in particular I think it’s required reading for newcomers to ownership!” more… Martin Broughton