The saying about racehorses not knowing what price they are in a race could be extended to their purchase price at public auction. Forest Fairy, secured for €78,000 as a yearling at the 2022 Goffs Orby Sale, took on two Godolphin newcomers that collectively cost 2.25 million guineas when she made her debut at Wolverhampton in February.

A six-length victory in that mile-and-a-half novice contest made Forest Fairy look incredible value, a sentiment that was only enhanced when she produced a battling display on her next start to take the Cheshire Oaks at Chester, in the process putting herself in the frame for the Oaks at Epsom at the end of May.

Forest Fairy races for owners Guy Myddelton and Vernon Taylor, and in famous silks – blue and silver halves, scarlet cap – more associated with the winter game.

“My colours were given to me by my grandmother,” explains Myddelton, whose father’s family was associated with Chirk Castle since the late 16th century – the property passed into the ownership of the National Trust in 1981 – although the racing interest comes from the maternal side.

“She had a lot of jumping horses in the late 1940s, 50s and 60s. The one of note is Freebooter, who won the Grand National in 1950 and ran in the race three times.

“I was mainly brought up in Yorkshire and there were always horses around at home with my mother, too. She owned some decent horses in the 1970s and 80s, including Polly Peachum and Scattered Scarlet, both good sprinters with Mick Easterby.

“My mother also bred Able Albert, winner of the Ayr Gold Cup, and Macarthur, a decent two-miler chaser. We are a riding and hunting family and I’ve always been interested in the sport.”

Myddelton’s interest had previously focused on jumpers; he lives in Cheshire, next door to up-and-coming trainers Oliver Greenall and Josh Guerriero – “I can see their gallops from the house” – yet a move towards the Flat is already paying dividends with the Ralph Beckett stable.

“There’s a quicker turnaround on the Flat, both financially and in getting the horses to the track,” Myddelton says. “The jumps is a longer game but perhaps more fulfilling when it goes right.

“As far as the involvement with Ralph is concerned, it’s a Yorkshire connection that goes back a long time since we were both youthful people! I’ve had horses in training with him on my own before – but haven’t had anything as good as Forest Fairy.

“It was an easy thing to go back to Ralph once we started to take the Flat a bit more seriously. He’s a very successful trainer who happens to be a good friend. So, I went there and introduced Vernon to that relationship.”

Forest Fairy was sourced by her trainer and bloodstock agent Alex Elliott. The figure she commanded may have been relatively modest, yet it did exceed the initial budget.

Myddelton says: “Alex took an order from me when he was in Ireland for the Orby Sale. He rang me and said he and Ralph had found this filly by Waldgeist – an absolute cracker – and that I had to buy her.

“I said that was fine but told them not to exceed the budget. He called back to say they had bought her – over the budget! – so I told them to find another shareholder.

“Ralph came in for 25%, with Vernon and I holding 37.5% each. That was the Forest Fairy Partnership, but it’s now been dissolved as Vernon and I have acquired Ralph’s interest.”

Owning racehorses, under both codes, required plenty of patience and Forest Fairy didn’t see the track at two.

“It was a struggle last year as she just needed more time, so we left her alone,” Myddelton relates. “I’m very much one to tell trainers that I’m not desperate to go the races until the horse is ready. It’s up to the trainer to run the horse in the right race at the right time, and then I’ll turn up.

“We were all surprised first time out and then at Chester we were hopeful that she would give a good account of herself – we thought she could be placed. That would have been wonderful in a Listed race. When she won, we were slightly gobsmacked!

“Vernon couldn’t speak for about five minutes. Watching from our position in the infield, I didn’t think she’d quite got there. It was a really wonderful moment when she was called the winner.

“If you win an Oaks trial, you’re almost duty-bound to go to Epsom. She’s a very well-balanced filly who can handle tight, turning tracks. It’s a dream come true, particularly for two guys who are more jumping people. We can’t quite believe it.”

Cheshire Oaks day became even more memorable when, just a couple of hours after Forest Fairy’s success, Myddelton’s son Harry, an amateur rider attached to the Greenall/Guerriero stable, partnered Go On Chez, jointly-owned by his father, to victory in a hunter chase at Kelso.

Myddelton says: “We couldn’t quite believe that both horses performed so well on the same afternoon! The plan is for Go On Chez and Harry to race at Stratford’s evening meeting on Oaks day.”

Having diversified with his runners, Myddelton has now turned his attention to the business of breeding.

He has two Flat broodmares at the Player family’s Whatton Manor and two National Hunt broodmares – maiden mare Shewearsthewellies, in foal to Jack Hobbs, and Letthetruthbeknown, who has a Golden Horn filly foal and is back in foal to that stallion – on his own property, which sits on 200 acres of farmland near Malpas in Cheshire.

He says: “The plan is to retain the fillies and sell the colts. We are, hopefully, at the beginning of an exciting journey.

“My main aim in racing was always to get the colours back to Aintree. We haven’t achieved that yet, but it remains an ambition of mine.”