Christophe Ferland grew up among horses. He was born in Chantilly. His father was a jockey who became head lad. Christophe Ferland has always been attracted to this world… However, he perfectly knew that his size would not allow him to follow in his father’s footsteps. It was therefore natural for Christophe Ferland to intend to be a horse racing trainer. He chose to study on the other side of the Channel, in the homeland of thoroughbred horse racing.
Apprenticeship at “Sir Mark”
The ﬁrst experience of Christophe Ferland was at the Lambourn training center, where he worked for two famous professionals – Charlie Mann and Peter Walwyn. This ﬁrst apprenticeship allowed him to apply for an assistant job at Mark Prescott successfully. Mark Prescott was one of the most titled trainers in Newmarket, which is a Mecca for ﬂat races in the United Kingdom.
After two years in collaboration with « Sir Mark », Christophe joined a young British trainer recently settled in Chantilly, Richard Gibson. He was assistant and travelling head lad for 9 years. This was a position which involved many responsibilities and brought him to escort champions such as Doctor Dino and Lune d’Or to the USA, Hong-Kong, Dubai, Singapore, Japan, Sweden, Spain, Italy… and even in Kazakhstan.
A tremendous start
At the end of 2007, Christophe Ferland set up his own business with around twenty horses and the support of many owners of his former boss. He chose the training center in La Teste de Buch, not far from Bordeaux, for its climate and its localization in the heart of a region with rich race programs. In January 2008, his first runner appeared in the programs and he got his first winner three months later. His career advanced at a dazzling pace at once : 10 winners during his first season and a number of horses that doubled two years later. Less than three years after obtaining his licence, he reached the apotheosis of first Group win, closely followed by two Group 1 titles ! These three trophies have been brought home by the same horse, the phenomenal DABIRSIM.
Dabirsim, the two-year-old champion
Dabirsim was purchased only at the price of €30.000 at the Arqana yearling sales marked the year 2011. Indeed, he remained undefeated in 5 races and won the European two-year-old title. Dabirsim won his debut easily – by 10 lengths and franked this with a second victory in La Teste, again at 1200 meters. Sent to Deauville for the Prix Cabourg Gr.3, where he showed an usual turn of foot to defeat his competitors easily. Three weeks later, he floored the opposition in the first European Gr.1 for the younger generation – the prix Morny, which is one of the most coveted races of the program. His devastating acceleration left the respected Family One three lengths behind.
On Arc de Triomphe Day, Dabirsim made it perfect at the mythical Longchamp racecourse by realizing the difficult double Prix Morny – Prix Jean- Luc Lagardère. Last of all three hundred meters from the winning post, he sneaked up to the rail and achieved a maximum speed that would be remembered. Dabirsim won by three – quarters of a length from Sofast, in the Wertheimers’ brothers’ colors.
2011 – the entry into the big league
The year 2011 was a real turning point in Christophe Ferland’s career. Indeed, Christophe Ferland saw his string exceed 80 horses while continuing to obtain impressive success rates : 70% of his horses earn a check, and one win every 5 races !
A new step was taken in 2013 with 7 Listed and Group victories for the stable won by 7 different horses. These victories allowed Christophe Ferland to burst into the top 10 of French trainers, after only six years of experience.
He has succeeded in keeping this ranking thanks to his steady results and the owners’ confidence over the years.
Since then, many international challenges have punctuated the performance of the team : FUNNY KID’s 1st place in the Betway Marathon Stakes 2018, HESHEM’s 2nd place in the Dubaï Turf 2017, CAVALE DOREE’s 3rd place in the Breeder’s Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf 2016… not to mention many other races in England, Spain, Germany, Italy, and Switzerland.
Christophe Ferland has already 705 victories and seems to be determined to maintain and improve his results with his dynamic and motivated team !
“Here we have a fantastic team, historical team members, together with newcomers who have joined us. We have very little turnover of staff. They are good people, who are involved in the racing stable, and especially in horses. This is just a story of humans. Nothing could be possible without them. » Paris-Turf, March 14, 2020.
Société d’entraînement Christophe Ferland
Hippodrome du Béquet
Route de Cazaux
33260 La Teste de Buch – France
+ 33(0)5 56 83 34 60