Horse Racing

Horse racing’s richest owners, like the secretive Chanel brothers worth £19BILLION to the ruler of Dubai and The Queen

IN horse racing there’s tons of money.

And it isn’t cheap to run a successful stable and train future winners in the glam sport.

The Wertheimer brothers are the richest horse racing owners around with a £19billion fortune
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has a fortune estimated as high as £14bn

That’s where some of the world’s wealthiest men and women come in – armed with wads of cash praying their fillies, mares, stallions and colts prove to be sound investments, and finish first past the post.

But, who are horse racing richest owners? Let’s find out.


Alain and Gerhard Wertheimer control French fashion giant Chanel, which means they are worth a STAGGERING £19billion.

The private pair, who rarely give interviews, inherited the company from their father Jacques, as well as a horse racing business.

It’s La Presle Farm – also known as Wertheimer Farm – in the US that seems to give them the most pleasure, with a load of Conditions race winners coming from that stable.

Their biggest success came with Goldikova, who became the only horse to ever win a Breeders’ Cup event three times when she won the TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

And Kotashaan was named 1993 American Horse of the Year after winning the Breeders’ Cup Turf in the same year.

They celebrated with The Queen after their horse Solow won the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at the QIPCO British Champions Day at Ascot in October 2015.

Alain and Gerhard Wertheimer control French fashion giants Chanel

SHEIKH MOHAMMED – up to £14bn

Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum owns the Godolphin stable.

With a net worth estimated by some as high as £14bn but as ‘low’ as £3bn by other outlets, Sheikh Mohammed’s firm has recorded over 5,000 winners worldwide since its inception in 1992.

And with money no object, the competitive owner is happy to spend over £4million to acquire a potentially winning horse, despite owing more than 1,000 around the world.

The half-brother of Group One winner Barney Roy was the Dubai ruler’s personal favourite when he visited Tattersalls October Yearling Sale in Newmarket in 2019.

Sheikh Mohammed owns the fabled Godolphin stable.

No pressure for it to deliver, then.

Sheikh Mohammed’s son, known as Fazza, also loves his horses and regularly posts photos of himself alongside superstars such as Pinatubo to his 10 million Instagram followers.

Fazza – full name Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum – is also good mates with Cristiano Ronaldo and UFC icon Khabib Nurmagomedov.

The Dubai Crown Prince stands as heir to the mega successful Godolphin team.

The Dubai Crown Prince can call Khabib one of his good friends
Fazza can also rely on pal Ronaldo for a nice selfie

THE QUEEN – £350m

Incredibly, the Queen has been a racehorse owner since 1952 – a year before her coronation – after inheriting the breeding and racing stock of her late father King George VI.

And even more amazing is that she’s overseen almost 2,000 winners during that time.

Her horses have won all the British classic races multiple times, except the Epsom Derby.

In terms of winnings, the Queen, worth around £350m, is laughing all the way to the bank. It was reported last year she has made £7.7m from horse racing in her lifetime.

The monarch makes the horse racing rich list, but she is far from the wealthiest on it.

The Queen has been a racehorse owner since 1952

Over the years the Queen has made around £7.7m from horse racing


A former Manchester United shareholder, McManus is one of Ireland’s leading thoroughbred stud owners.

The Cheltenham Festival appears to be his most favoured event, having 50 winners there including 2017 Champion Hurdle victor Buveur d’Air.

Worth around £2bn, McManus famously challenged a fellow business mogul to a game of Backgammon and won £15.2m in 2012.

He also owns the renowned Jackdaws Castle facility in the Cotswolds, where trainer Jonjo O’Neill works from.

McManus, a gambler and businessman, forked out a record £570,000 on Jonbon, a brother of Douvan who won his first race by 15 lengths.

JP McManus is worth around £2bn and the jockeys riding his horses always wear the famous green and yellow silks


Magnier, often referred to as ‘The Boss’, is another of Ireland’s most famous faces in horse racing.

His £2.5bn fortune has been amassed by a business portfolio that includes UK nursing home group Barchester Healthcare, Britain’s biggest pub group, Mitchells & Butlers, and Luttrellstown Castle, where David and Victoria Beckham had their exclusive wedding.

But it’s his Coolmore Stud breeding operation that’s raking it in, and is said to be worth an astonishing £4bn on its own.

Incredibly, that was set up by his ancestors in the 1850s and has been home to champion sires Sadler’s Wells and Danehill.


Ranked as one of Britain’s richest women, the Sunday Times Rich List 2019 placed Rausing 6th (jointly with her brother Jörn) with an estimated fortune of £12.25bn.

She breeds horses at her stud farm Lanwades Stud in Newmarket.

Rausing has enjoyed countless winners domestically and abroad in a 40-year race career.

Her first, and perhaps most famous stallion, was the Nijinsky horse Niniski.

He sired the champion two-year-old Kala Dancer and the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes winner Petoski in his first crop of foals.

Kirsten Rausing is worth an astonishing £12.25bn

She breeds horses at her stud farm Lanwades Stud


Although B Wayne Hughes has been the owner of thoroughbred horses since 1972, you could argue he didn’t find his best horse until this year.

His three-year-old colt Authentic stormed to victory in at the 2020 Kentucky Derby and won the Breeders’ Cup Classic.

In the latter, it set a new track record at Keeneland.

Wayne Hughes, worth around £2.3bn, operates at the Spendthrift Farm in Lexington, Kentucky.

Despite his advancing years, he’s now 87, he’s still very involved in the business.

That was shown at the recent Fasig-Tipton’s Night of the Stars auction, in which Hughes’ stable splashed £19m in one night on the top horses.

Despite his advancing years, Wayne Hughes, 87, is still very active in the horse racing world

Remember to gamble responsibly

A responsible gambler is someone who:

  • Establishes time and monetary limits before playing
  • Only gambles with money they can afford to lose
  • Never chase their losses
  • Doesn’t gamble if they’re upset, angry or depressed
  • Gamcare – www.gamcare.org.uk
  • Gamble Aware – www.begambleaware.org

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