There has been a stud at Highclere for over 100 years. Siddown Warren Stud, as it was originally named, was founded in 1902 by the 5th Earl of Carnarvon. The stud is made up of 300 acres of rolling chalk paddocks situated in the valley between Beacon and Siddown Hills; a location which affords shelter and has an ideal mix of flat and undulating paddocks.
The 5th Earl laid out the foundations of the stud with the purchase of Grand Prix (by St. Simon) in 1900 for 700gns. Grand Prix was the dam of the outstanding broodmares Jongleuse (by Juggler) and Malva (by Charles O’Malley), the dam of the 1930 Epsom Derby winner Blenheim. Not only did the 5th Earl found Highclere Stud, but he was also a keen supporter of the new racecourse at Newbury which opened in 1905 and he was one of the first stewards. The 5th Earl was also the famous Egyptologist who together with Howard Carter discovered the tomb of King Tutankhamun.
The 6th Earl (1878-1987), who was a well-known amateur jockey in the 1930’s, bought further success to Highclere Stud by importing yearlings from the USA. Nevertheless, it was the 7th Earl (1924-2001) who truly developed the bloodlines at Highclere. Lord Porchester, as he was then, did this by reintroducing the families that had been around in his grandfather the 5th Earl’s day. In 1962 he bought Grand Prix’s descendant Jojo. Jojo foaled 13 winners in all, including Queen’s Hussar (the sire of champions Brigadier Gerard and Highclere) and the outstanding broodmare Hiding Place. Group 1 performers Little Wolf and Smuggler were both progeny of Hiding Place, as was the mare Cubbyhole who produced the 1,000 Guineas second Niche, the first filly to win the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot. This family continues today with the mare Ravine (Indian Ridge) who is the dam of Gr.2 winner Captain Hurricane and who has a 2012 colt by Paco Boy.
John and Carolyn are always aiming to improve and develop the bloodlines at Highclere Stud, and have made a number of significant purchases in recent years namely Model Queen (Kingmambo) who is the dam of 3 stakes horses including dual Gr.1 winner Regal Parade.
The Hon Harry Herbert, younger brother of the current Earl, runs the most successful racing syndicate in the world, Highclere Thoroughbred Racing Ltd, in which John Warren is also a director. Successful horses include Lake Coniston, Tamarisk, Petrushka, Delilah, Highest, Collection and World Champion Harbinger. Also the Royal Ascot Racing Club champion Motivator who was managed by Highclere.
As his father was, Harry Herbert is currently a member of The Jockey Club as is Lady Carolyn Warren. Jake Warren, son of John and Carolyn is also now involved in the business having spent two years working for leading sports agency Pitch London.