Richard Hannon Jnr. – who, in fact, is one of triplets – is, of course, the son of four-time Champion Trainer Richard Hannon Snr. and took over the training licence at Herridge and Everleigh Stables near Marlborough, Wiltshire following the retirement of his father at the end of the 2013 season. Having spent twelve years as assistant to his father, one of the most successful trainers in the country, Hannon Jnr. wasted little time in making his own mark on the training ranks.
His first runner as a licensed trainer in his own right, Unscripted, won a lowly median auction maiden stakes race at Wolverhampton by 10 lengths on January 3, 2014, and by the end of the year Hannon Jnr. had saddled 206 winners and earned £4.75 million in prize money to become Champion Trainer at the first attempt. His first major prizes of the season came on consecutive days in April, courtesy of Shifting Power in the European Free Handicap and Toormore in the Craven Stakes, both on the Rowley Mile Course at Newmarket. Toormore subsequently ran in the 2,000 Guineas, but weakened in the closing stages to finish seventh, beaten 4¼ lengths, behind unfancied stablemate Night Of Thunder, who thus provide Hannon Jnr. with his first British Classic winner.
Further success at the highest level followed, with victories for Olympic Glory in the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury, Toronado in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot and Tiggy Wiggy in the Cheveley Park Stakes at Newmarket. In fact, the latter won six of her eight starts as a juvenile to become Cartier Champion Two-Year-Old Filly. In a stellar first season for Hannon Jnr., other money-spinners for the yard included the two-year-old colts, Beacon, who won four races, including the Flying Childers Stakes at Doncaster, and Baitha Alga, who won three races, including the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot. Later, reflecting on the transition between father and son, Hannon Jnr. said, “My father is still the only man in the world I am frightened of. I think that is only right.”