Mr Scupham presented Johnny Barnes with the photo earlier this month. *Photo supplied
Mr Scupham presented Johnny Barnes with the photo earlier this month. *Photo supplied

Popular Bermudian ambassador Johnny Barnes has come face to face with the racing horse that has been named after him.

The colt, Johnny Barnes, is one of two Bermudian horses that is currently being trained up to race on some of the most famous courses in the UK. The second horse is called Horseshoe Bay.

The two Irish colts were recently purchased by Bermuda Thoroughbred Racing as part of a new scheme to allow islanders to become part owners in some of the most promising horses.

The project is the brainchild of Bermudian businessman Simon Scupham.

Mr Scupham joined Johnny Barnes earlier this month, in front of his statute on the way in to Hamilton, to present him with a picture of the colt Johnny Barnes.

Both horses, Johnny Barnes and Horseshoe Bay, are currently being put through their paces in Aldbourne in the UK where they are saddled and ridden for the first time.

Once they are cantering the Bermudian racing duo will then go off to their trainers, which is likely to be mid to late January.

Mr Scupham told the Bermuda Sun he expects Johnny Barnes to race, all being well, for the first time in April or May. While Horseshoe Bay should be on the track in August or September.

The new venture has seen Mr Scupham team up with arguably the world’s most well-known racehorse ownership company, Highclere, to create Bermuda Thoroughbred Racing.

And it will mark the first occasion that ‘Bermudian’ horses race on famous courses like Goodwood, Ascot and Newmarket.

While the jockeys that ride Johnny Barnes and Horseshoe Bay in competitive racing will wear silks in Bermuda’s traditional pink and dark blue colours.

The two colts were chosen earlier this month by John Warren, who is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading ‘bloodstock’ advisors and is also the bloodstock agent to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth.