Life begins at 40 (or,does it just begin?)

This blog was going to be dedicated to Ber Fahey, wife of master trainer Peter Fahey, but a late entry has complicated things. I will get back to Ber in a moment but, first, I and Kim do want to congratulate David and Jo Johnson on the birth of their first baby, Amy. I will be seeing David at York races in August (he thinks he’s going to be allowed to go) and will congratulate him properly then.Congratulations to his dad, my great friend Ian, on becoming a Granddad for the first time (and Linda, his wife, on being a grandma!)  Great news.

Amy is about 40 hours old but Ber, today July 26th, turns forty. I could not let the occasion pass without a few comments and all I would say is that I am hopeful Ber will still be talking to me at the end of this blog


If A wasn’t the first letter of the alphabet, I would have to invent a new alphabet as there is no better word to start with. Sláinte


How can you go wrong when your father has been head lad at Jesse Harrington’s for years, your brother is an ex-jockey and your husband is an outstanding horseman?


In the evocative words of the English Times on March 12, 2017:

Last November, in a corner of the Cheltenham parade ring, Ber Fahey lost herself: in the moment; in ecstasy; in public; on camera. Peregrine Run hit the front after the last flight and Ber started bouncing: up and down in a frenzy, her hair flapping, her handbag jiving, her left arm swinging. Peter, her husband, the trainer, joined the dance after Peregrine Run crossed the line; Ber clasped him in a feverish hug. Her race card went flying. He won.


The scene – outside of an exclusive bar at Cheltenham races. The problem – we needed six tickets; we had none. The solution: Ber walked in (probably between the security guy’s legs before he had chance to see her) and returned, two minutes later, with six pristine tickets. No idea what she did and probably best not to try and find out


When you get home at 6am and have to look your best by noon the following day (or, is that the same day?); that takes energy. Something that Ber is seldom without.


This has always been a problem for Ber. Don’t get me wrong, she always looks wonderful but I can’t help wondering how many children’s clothes shops she has to go in to find the perfect outfit. It must be exhausting!

Girl Scouts

Ber is a committed Scout Leader and only too happy to give over her home and, more likely, nearby fields for the Monasterevin version of ‘glamping’ . Of course, if she has owners coming over from America that commitment may be severely tested.


What would Ber be without heels? My guess is: ‘about’ 4ft 2in.


Impish is a synonym for mischievous and I have already have a much more important word for M so ‘impish’ it is.

Imagine the scene: Peter, the most conscientious buyer, goes to the sales to buy a horse. He buys the wrong horse but convinces himself it is fate and the horse is one he would like in his stables. Ber has an idea and asks Peter: Who do we know who will believe that this horse is the result of intensive research and we can’t believe we have got him for a song?

Read future blogs to discover the identity of this ‘mug’


Ber is an accomplished rider; albeit she has confined herself to the odd charity race. I have to confess I can feel my confidence increasing when she says great things about how Bay of Freedom feels. Hopefully, one day she will say something before he races. 


Ber was born to be a mother and is as loving, proud and protective as can be; quite right given that she has three wonderful children. I once made an offhand comment about Lauren four weeks after she was born and Ber mentions it at every opportunity (although I have beaten her to it this time)


Ber and Peter took the kids to Lapland last December. We met them a few weeks later and it was with a  profound sense of relief that Ber had returned; I had been convinced she would have had a job for life as Santa’s Helper


There is no more important role in life and none for which Ber is better qualified. It is her finest achievement (even including marrying Peter) and she should be very proud of her children. 

Night out

Hmmmm Not sure where the ‘s’ went as , surely, this cannot be singular. I will, however, confine, myself to describing one night. It was Galway, 2015 and the night before Bay of Freedom was running. There were ten of us out and one by one we retired to bed; Kim left about 11.30 and I stuck it out until around 2am. My brother-in-law, Brian, (Kim’s brother) likes to party and he wasn’t going to be leaving at 2am for anyone. He eventually returned to the hotel at 6am; tired and frustrated. The tired part is obvious; the frustration less so. He had left when, in his own words, “Ber was just getting going”

Needless to say, she turned up at Galway looking immaculate. I do, however, have my suspicions that Bay of Freedom’s atrocious run can be put down to an excess of alcoholic fumes in that part of the parade ring.


The colours for the top of this blog (a one time only event) are in Ber’s racing colours of pink, blue and white. These are colours no self respecting owner should ever choose but that’s just my opinion


Ber’s maternal instincts make her extremely protective and someone you would not want to cross.  Of course, an even worse position is to be an arbiter in any argument between Ber and someone else. The constant looking back and forth between Ber’s face and the face of her normal sized opponent is almost guaranteed to induce some form of vertigo 


The next partial eclipse on the sun in Ireland is March 25, 2025. I am hoping to receive my next statement the day after!


Ber should patent whatever it is she takes to get going the morning after the night before.

Social Media

Facebook aside, this is perhaps not Ber’s strongest forte.

Screen Shot 2018-07-24 at 3.52.21 PM.png

Not the most active Twitter account

Tea and/or coffee maker extraordinaire

A few owners have been persuaded to send horses to Peter because of the quality of  Ber’s tea and coffee making skills. I don’t drink the stuff and her Mango and Orange juice tastes just like Texaco’s – just saying


In support of Peter and that horrible term “Team Fahey”


You may have got the emphasis on alcohol by now so this may be redundant

White Wine

And this….

X Factor

Or, in Ber’s case, XL (and that does not mean extra-large)

Young at heart

Something you have to believe in when you turn forty


And we’re all way back to A


Happy Birthday Ber from Paul and Kim!